How to Take Advantage of Used Tea Bags?

· December 12, 2015
People who drink tea or infusions are often wasting something that could be very useful in a variety of ways: the tea bags which they have finished using.

Actually, they are not just the dried remains of a plant that has no more use. Therefore, in this article we will explain the surprising uses they can have: fertilizer for your plants, treatment of the bags under your eyes, remedy to eliminate odors from the refrigerator and closets, remedy against mosquitoes, etc.

Environmental awareness

Each day more and more people are becoming interested in making the most of everything they use, as well as wasting as little as possible. In this article, we will discover that drinking tea or an infusion daily is not just a healthy habit but we will learn that we can find a practical solution for just about everything.


Fertilizer for the plants

Many people who have a garden or an orchard already have a compost pile: a place where they daily throw the organic leftovers from cooking or the unused portions taken from the garden, and that in a few weeks is converted into fertilizer for the plants.  Without a doubt, this is a resource that allows us to have less waste, and at the same time, to have more fertile ground.

Following this same idea, the contents of tea bags allow us to fertilize, on a small scale, the plants in our house. We can wait until we have several, or even better, use each one right after making tea. You can simply dump the contents from the used tea bag right into the soil in your pots and mix just a little.

If the tea bags are of organic material and do not contain a metal closure, you can bury them directly in the soil and cover with a little soil on top.


Anti-inflammatory treatment

The majority of teas have beneficial properties not only for our internal health but also for our skin. The most common, black tea or green tea, also have anti-inflammatory properties that help to soothe, for example, bags under the eyes, swollen eyelids or insect bites.

The tea bags will be even more effective if they are cold, since cold also helps to reduce swelling, therefore, we suggest that you always have some used tea bags in the freezer. When you need one, you can get it from the freezer and apply it directly for several minutes.

Absorbs odors

This is possibly one of the most unknown uses. Used tea bags, once dried, have a function similar to sodium bicarbonate (baking soda): they absorb bad odors. For this reason, they are ideal to have inside the refrigerator or in closets.

One tea bag is not sufficient to eliminate the odors from a large space, therefore we recommend that you place several of them together in a box with holes. It will look more elegant too.

With this same objective you can also use them to clean the carpets and beds of your pets. You only need to sprinkle the contents of the used tea bags on top, let it sit for a few minutes and then clean it with the vacuum cleaner.  In this way you will eliminate the dust and bad odors at the same time.

Incense against mosquitoes

Those who love incense and aromas should know that tea and infusion leaves can also be used in an incense burner to clean the air and drive away mosquitoes, especially if they contain black tea, lemon, lavender, rosemary or eucalyptus.

Reuse the same tea bags

If we are trying to save the maximum possible, you should also know that you can reuse the same tea bag for another infusion, especially if it still has a lot of flavor left. Perhaps the second time you can use two used tea bags for one infusion, thus you will achieve a flavor similar to a new tea bag.

You can also boil a few used tea bags and use this water to prepare a foot bath, or just add it to your bathwater. The properties which it contains, as we have already mentioned, such as anti-inflammatory and elimination of bad odors, will also work in this case.

Images courtesy of A girl with tea, rabi w y Anders Adermark.