If you need a cleaning tip, you go online. If you’re feeling sick, you google your symptoms, and it’s pretty convenient for everyone. I mean, if you find yourself in a complex situation, you want the most simple and effective solution.
With so much modern technology, we forget that people survived for thousands of generations without the Internet or even electricity. They were forced to figure out creative ways to make life more convenient. Sometimes, these vintage methods are way more effective than modern techniques.
Check out these vintage life hacks from the 1900s. Some of these still come in handy today!
The Buttery Goodness
Butter is a common ingredient used in many different foods; you can’t deny how the buttery goodness makes any meal even more delicious. However, getting pure butter for cooking is rather challenging in today’s world. Cheap butter is created by mixing it with margarine which alters the flavor while preparing certain meals.
Here is a vintage life hack to check if your butter is pure. Simply rub a small amount on a piece of paper and set it on fire. A refined smell means the butter is pure. An unpleasant foul smell indicates that there is margarine mixed in there.
The Cracked Egg
One of the biggest problems with cracked eggs is boiling them. The contents tend to split out of the crack into the water, creating an unpleasant situation. But there is a 1900s life hack that can help you solve this problem.
You can still boil the cracked egg, just simply add a spoonful of vinegar to the water. This will help prevent the contents from spilling out of the shell. It will also ensure that the egg is properly cooked. As someone who eats boiled eggs, I run into this issue pretty often. I’m definitely going to try this one.
Protecting Your Vase
When it comes to beautiful valuable vases, the biggest problem is that they are easily broken. It usually happens by complete accident but, nonetheless, it’s disappointing. But like any other art-piece, there is no point in keeping it hidden. Vases should be showcased. So how do you display a gorgeous vase and lower the likelihood of it breaking?
There is a simple, yet clever vintage hack which is the perfect solution. All you have to do is fill the vase with sand. Make sure you fill it up to a considerable level, making it heavier and more stable. That way, a small collision probably won’t break it.
Picking Up Glass
Accidents happen at home all the time. They are just a part of life, and we all have to deal with broken glass at one point or another. However, there are several ways to clean up after these incidences. Removing big pieces are easy, it’s the little, tiny pieces that are more difficult to find and can lead to cuts and injuries.
But with one vintage life hack, you don’t have to worry about this problem. Just grab a rag (that can be thrown away), put it in some cold water and use the damp rag to clean the floor. It will pick up all the small pieces which you can throw away with the rag.
Getting Rid of Ink Stains
Whether you are a student in school or working in an office, you have likely found yourself in a situation with ink stains. Whenever this happens, it’s a nightmare to remove. You want to get the stain off without ruining the quality of the fabric. So here is what you do:
Take the piece of clothing, and soak the affected area in a bowl of milk. This will remove the ink completely. Believe it or not, the milk will also give the fabric a pleasant smell after washing. This vintage hack works wonders!
Cleaning the Inside of a Bottle
When it comes to cleaning kitchen utensils at home, there are several different methods. Some utensils are more difficult to clean than others, but the desired goal is to get them all as spotless as possible. There are a lot of vintage cleaning hacks that might be able to help, you just need to know the right one for the right occasion.
A straightforward example is cleaning the inside of a bottle. Start off by pouring water into the bottle, then add a small amount of sand, and shake well. Even though you are technically pouring dirt in there, it will completely clean the inside of the bottle.
Detecting Gas Leaks
A dangerous hazard you may face at home is a gas leak. Most of the time, it takes a while before you can get a professional to check the gas pipes. But gas leaks should always be treated as an emergency. So, how would one detect gas leaks without the risk of fire accidents?
It’s quite easy if you follow this hack. Get a thick solution of soap and use it to paint over the pipe where you think the leak is coming from. The leakage point will make the soap foam up so you’ll be able to notice it, and then you can take the necessary steps to stop it.
Squeaky, New Boots
New boots are exciting but sometimes they can be a little hard to break into and make squeaky sounds while you’re walking. Eventually, the squeaking sound will go away but some folks get so annoyed (me) and have no patience to wait for it to stop. There are actually two methods to get rid of that obnoxious sound.
The first way is to drive a few brads into the sole of the shoe. Or you could put the whole sole into a bowl filled with oil and make sure it’s completely soaked. The oil should prevent the shoe from continuing to squeak.
Getting The Candle in the Candlestick
Planning a nice romantic dinner with a loved one usually comes with a lot of effort and energy. Unfortunately, sometimes one small detail can spoil all the fun. One thing that can ruin a romantic evening is when the candle is too thick to fit into the candlestick.
This genius vintage hack offers a simple solution. All you have to do is place the candle in a bowl of hot water for a few minutes. Wait a little for the wax to soften. Now, you can press the candle into the candlestick without breaking it.
Like most food items, eggs taste the best when they are fresh. When they are not appropriately preserved, they start to give off an unpleasant smell and are pretty much useless. So, how can you keep eggs fresh for a long time?
There is an extremely easy and effective hack from the 1900s that is proven to work. All you have to do is bury the eggs in a tin filled with salt, and make sure they are totally covered and don’t touch the air. The salt will ensure that your eggs stay fresh longer than usual.
Tanning a White Buckskin Shoe
You can find various beauty hacks to revive old clothing items. This one works wonders when it comes to buckskin shoes. After a little while, white buckskin shoes usually need tanning in order to preserve their beauty and other alluring qualities.
One way to reach this goal is to simply mix together ten drops of saffron, and about three teaspoons of salad oil. The combination has been used for decades to clean shoes. After you clean it, give your shoe a good old polishing. That should really revive the buckskin shoe and all its glory.
Removing a Ring
If you try on a ring that doesn’t quite fit, or even after just wearing a ring for a while, it might start to get uncomfortable. Unfortunately, taking it off can become a problem. We’ve all been there, and it’s not fun. Luckily, there are two vintage life hacks that can solve this problem, pain-free.
The first one is pretty obvious: Apply soap to the ring. A soapy mixture can slide the ring right off your hand. Another way is to raise your finger for a little bit; gravity will actually reduce the blood flow making it way easier to take off the ring. You can combine both for guaranteed results!
Cleaning the Brush Handle
When done alone, painting can be fun, peaceful, and intuitive. But it can also be stressful when you are an amateur in the field making rookie mistakes. One particular problem artists struggle with is keeping the paintbrush clean when not using it.
Dropping it means that it will likely come in contact with dirt and sand, or worse, it can stain other things at home. All you have to do is take a card, cut a hole in the middle, and put the brush inside. This will hold the brush until you’re ready to paint again.
Stopping Color Ruins
When it comes to home cleaning, laundry is a major part of it. Laundry can be such a pain, especially when it’s not done right away. And it seems to me that washing whites is way easier than cleaning colors. When different colors are washed together, sometimes they stain each other.
So, when you’re washing various colors together, how do you prevent stains? It’s simple! Immerse your clothes in a saltwater solution before washing. You can create the concoction by mixing two handfuls of salt in a liter of water. This especially works when it comes to clothes that are dyed.
Reviving Cut Flowers
Flowers are a beautiful addition to any home or work environment. But much of nature’s beauty, flowers are really delicate. Sometimes, during transport from the farm, the bloom and color of the flowers fade. So how do you revive these cut flowers?
You should first put the stem in hot water and keep it there until the water cools down. At that point, you’ll notice the fade will disappear, leaving you with stunning fresh flowers. Make sure to cut off the stem that was in the hot water, and the rest should be kept in cold water, the way you would normally preserve them.
Every person has gotten a splinter at one point or another. If you’re not careful, you can easily get one from picking up tiny glass particles or wood shavings. Removing splinters is both difficult and painful. If you don’t take it out correctly, you might accidentally push it further into the skin.
Splinters were just as common (if not more common) back in the day. So, it’s no surprise that there is a vintage life hack that could help remove the fragments from under your skin. Take a wide-mouthed bottle and fill it with hot water. Then press it tightly against the affected area. It will create a suction that pulls the skin, and the steam removes the splinter.
Sea Stains On Brown Shoes
An occasional trip to the beach sounds like a wonderful, relaxing idea. But hanging out at the seaside comes with one little problem: Saltwater causes stains on brown shoes. These stains are extremely difficult to remove, and more often than not, an ordinary polish doesn’t do the trick.
There is one vintage camping hack that could help solve this issue. Dissolve a small amount of baking soda into some hot milk; then, use the concoction to clean the shoe. After dying the shoe, general polishing will help restore the sparkling look of the shoes.
Floury and Dry Potatoes
Various cooking methods allow for all sorts of different options and recipes. This means that with the right approach, a specific preference can be achieved. Well, there are a few vintage life hacks that can be useful while boiling potatoes to make them dry and floury instead of soft and mushy.
Start off by adding a pinch of salt and sugar into the boiling water. Once boiled, you could discard the water. Now, simply take the saucepan with the potatoes, and place it on the fire. Shake regularly for equal dryness.
Lighting a Match
When talking about lighting a match out in the open, camping and bonfires come to mind. However, it can be difficult for people on a windy night. Luckily, there is a vintage way to overcome this irritating obstacle. The solution just needs a little creativity.
Just cut small, thin shavings on the matchsticks. The shavings should not be fully cut out and should be facing toward the striking the end. When you light the match, the shavings also light up, giving you a bigger fire when you’re up against the wind.
Certain flowers are rarer than others and might be found in a specific area. It could take over a week to send these types of flowers to these locations. Therefore, someone needs to figure out a way to preserve these flowers during the long trip. Or perhaps somebody wants to send some homemade flowers to a spouse or relative.
A wonderful way to preserve the bloom is to put the end of the stalks in freshly cut raw potatoes. I know it sounds a bit strange, but this method is very effective and can definitely keep your flowers fresh on a week-long journey.
No More Foggy Glasses
On your way to work on a cold morning, you might find out your eyeglasses are fogging up. Nothing is more distracting or annoying than steam blurring your vision. Taking them off can make this inconvenient situation even more stressful.
Thankfully, there is a simple yet clever vintage hack that can prevent this situation from ever happening. Before leaving for work, use soap to wipe and clean the lenses. Regularly using the soap will eventually leave an invisible layer of soap on the glass that stops it from steaming. How cool?!
Keeping a White Straw Hat Clean
Maintaining a white straw hat is quite a challenging feat. Anything made out of a straw isn’t the easiest to take care of but white means it will most likely get dirty at some point. Well, this problem existed back in the 1900s, and they discovered a hack that is still effective today.
Gently and properly brush the hat with a soft bristle brush to remove dust. Then, cut a lemon in half and rub the hat with the inside part of it to effectively clean the straw. This is an interesting one. If you own a white straw hat, this one is for you.
Recycling Coal Dust
Nowadays, coal dust or ash is still used as fuel. Believe it or not, recycling coal dust can save costs while protecting water and air. The way to achieve this is by turning coal dust into bricks. There is a vintage life hack that people used to use in order to create the bricks.
Mix a shovel full of coal dust and combine it with a handful of salted water. Keep stirring until the concoction becomes a stiff paste. Then, mold it into brick shapes using a pan or box and leave it to dry. The result will be perfectly molded coal bricks.
Cleaning an Old Clock
If you set a clock on a shelf or hang it on the wall, after a little while, it can become extremely dusty and unpleasant to look at. Although we live in a digital world, some people still have clocks and there is a simple vintage way to solve this problem.
Just dunk a piece of cottonwood in coal oil, then put it under the clock. Wait patiently for the oil fumes to rise. It will loosen the dust particles in the clock and fall right off. You might have to sweep the floor, but you don’t have to worry about reaching the clock.
We already mentioned a few cleaning hacks when it comes to shoes. Let’s be honest, polishing new boots can be daunting. However, there is a vintage hack that has been used for hundreds of years: You can polish your new boots using nothing but a lemon.
All you have to do is cut the lemon in half and use one half to rub lemon on the boots. Just allow them to dry, and they will so much easier to polish. I can’t wait to try this hack when I get my new boots next week. I’ll definitely get back to you on how well it worked.
Fixing Broken China
Breaking a gorgeous and stunning and valued piece of china is disappointing, to say the least. It’s not like we ever really use them, but when we do, what happens if they break? Luckily, there is a brilliant vintage hack that can be just as useful today.
Heat alum until it melts. Then, put the melted compound on the open edge of the broken pieces to hold both parts together until they stick together. Almost like glue. Make sure you keep them set perfectly and stable until the alum finally cools down.
Cracking Lamp Glass
If you have a lamp with cracked glass, it is pretty much useless. So how do you avoid the lamp glass from cracking in the first place? There is a vintage home hack that will help lower the chances of your lamp glass cracking.
Simply place the glass into cold water and then boil it. Once it’s boiled, leave the glass in there as the water cools down. Then, once you’re ready to use it, just polish the glass with a rag. The water helps strengthen the lamp glass giving it a higher survival rate.
The reason we use corks is to preserve the contents in a bottle. They are more often used with wine, but they can occasionally be seen with expensive high-end olive oil. But if the corks are not airtight and watertight, it kind of defeats the purpose of having one at all.
So, if you open a bottle a wine that you want to preserve, here is what you do. Place paraffin wax in a pot and boil. Once the paraffin wax starts to melt, dip the whole cork into the boiling paraffin wax. It will cause the cork to regain its super-tight abilities. Science!
Duplicating Fretwork Designs
Most of us will probably agree that duplicating a beautiful fretwork is much easier than redesigning a pattern. There is a vintage life hack that can help you achieve duplicates. All you really need is a few sheets of paper.
Just evenly ink the pattern; you could just use printer ink. Then, place a piece of paper on the inked fret. After that, roll a sheet of paper over the inked pattern. That way, you can transfer the ink from one fret to another.
Cleaning an Oil Painting
In order to maintain the art and alluring beauty of oil paintings, you need to keep them clean. But you have to be careful when cleaning oil paintings because you don’t want to ruin them. This type of situation calls for special cleaning aids. Here is a very easy vintage cleaning hack.
The first thing you do is dust the painting. Then, clean it with a thin slice of potato. Yep, you read that correctly. As soon as the potato slice gets dirty, cut new slices, and keep cleaning. You can use a clean rag to wipe off the remaining little potato pieces.
Trimming a Wick
A lamp wick with charred edges can be pretty frustrating. Most people (me) would just pick up a pair of scissors and chop off the burnt edge of the wick. It sounds like the perfect solution. However, this only makes the wick deplete faster.
Don’t worry though, there is a vintage hack that could help you here. Instead of cutting off the charred edge, just pinch it off. Apparently, this is enough to fix the problem. Only trim it off if, for some reason, this doesn’t work, and you can’t get it off using your hands.
Slaughter a Tree Stump
Getting rid of an unwanted tree isn’t as easy as you would like it to be. Once you cut down a tree, there is usually still a stump. If you don’t remove the stump, it will result in the tree sprouting once again. There is one vintage trick to stop this from happening.
Dig holes in the top and sides of the stump. Then, you create a mixture consisting of solignum and salt and pour the concoction into the holes. This will eventually kill the tree completely. I don’t know how environmentally friendly this one is, but apparently it works!
Thin Bread Slices
There are plenty of vintage life hacks that are still clever and relevant in this day and age. This one comes in handy when it’s time for breakfast. It’s very difficult to cut a thin slice of bread. Well, if you run into this problem like I do, this hack can make a huge difference.
The vintage trick is to first place the knife into hot water. Then, while remove the knife and the hot knife will now cut your loaf of bread into those thin desired slices.
Tightening a Pen Cap
If you’re a writer, a fountain pen is a fun accessory. If you have one, you know that using it to write is a pleasurable experience. What’s less pleasurable, however, is when one of the pen’s caps gets loose and explodes! Nothing is more irritating than ink stains everywhere.
One fun way to avoid this agonizing experience is using this vintage hack. If you have a loose pen cap, put it over a flame for just a few seconds to soften it. Then squeeze the cap into a smaller oval pipe. Then, the cap will fit back into the pen in a sturdier position.
Often times, a cork doesn’t fit in a bottle properly, usually because they are too big. Instead of damaging the cork by cutting off parts of it in an attempt to make it fit, there is a simple vintage hack that can help you achieve this much more easily.
All you have to do is put the cork on a hard surface. Then, step on it with the sole of your shoe while applying pressure, and steadily roll the cork under your foot. This way, you can shrink the size of the cork without accidentally damaging it.
Save Gas on the Stove
Preparing several different dishes can be fun, especially for all you chefs out there. However, it can get discouraging if you think about the amount of cooking gas you are burning. But don’t worry, we got some good news! Just use this vintage hack.
Get an iron sheet that’s big enough to sit on the gas stove. It will diffuse heat across the surface of the iron sheet, which pretty much means you could prepare different meals by putting the food that requires the most heat in the areas with the most heat intensity.
How to Cure Chilblains
Having chilblains is not a pleasant experience. Chilblains are the inflammation of small blood vessels in your skin that occur in response to repeated exposure to cold (but not freezing) air- and it’s painful! But don’t worry!
We have a vintage hack that helps get rid of the irritation. All you really need for this one is salt and apple juice. Cut a slice of apple, dip it into salt, and then rub the apple on the affected area gently. This is a great way to relieve the pain and soothe your skin.
Preserving Leaves in Autumn
Autumn comes with a stunning array of beautiful colors. Flowers are blooming, leaves are falling from the sky, and the weather is perfect. It really is the best season of the year and that’s why many people want to preserve the gorgeous autumn leaves. So how can you do this successfully?
We’ve got an old vintage hack to answer that question. Simply dip the leaves in melted spermaceti while it’s still warm. Make sure the leaves are lightly coated and then leave them on a smooth surface to dry.
Long-lasting Paint Brushes
If you like to paint, you know dealing with paintbrushes can be a pain. Painters usually buy them quite often because the bristles dry out or they just get ruined. Paintbrushes were around back in the day so we’ve got a vintage hack that will make your paintbrushes last longer.
Immediately after painting, wash every bit of paint out of the brush, then squeeze it between a cloth. Then keep the brush in a container with enough water to cover the hairs of the brush. This will help preserve your brushes and save you money on new ones.
Cleaning Your Mackintosh
Not to be confused with an Apple computer, a Mackintosh is a full-length raincoat. Getting one of these coats stained is a nightmare and seems impossible to clean. Well, we got a vintage hack that will help solve this problem, and all you need is a knife and a potato.
First, take a raw potato and peel it, then you just simply use it to rub off the dirty part of the coat. This hack will remove all the stains and marks from your Mackintosh. Who would have thought you could clean with a potato?
Raising Your Saucepan Lid
All you chefs out there know that keeping a saucepan sealed while cooking can lead to a messy spillage. Cleaning it up takes time and energy, so wouldn’t it be better if we could avoid it altogether? Here is a vintage hack that people have been using for hundreds of years.
All you have to do is keep the lid a tiny bit open. In order to do so, you can use a simple peg for clothes. Just put it over the top edge of the saucepan so that it could hold up the lid. If you thought DIYs are a modern-day thing, they seem to have been around back in the day.
Separate Glass Cups
Have you ever washed the dishes and noticed that two class cups are stuck inside each other? Do you try to take one out and accidentally break it, like I do? As it turns out, forcing separation will cause the glass to break and could lead to cuts and injuries.
However, with this easy vintage home hack, you will manage to separate the glass cups easily and safely. Put both cups over a bowl of hot water and fill the top glass with cold water. After that, you will easily be able to separate the glass cups.
Sprained Ankle Treatment
Jumping too high or falling off a bike can lead to a sprained ankle. A sprained ankle is extremely painful and inconvenient and without proper care, it will continue to swell up. So, what do you do? Back in the day, they would wrap the ankle with a piece of cloth soaked in water.
Make sure your leg is elevated before you wrap it. In order to keep the cloth wet, keep one end in a jug of water so that you could continue to have wet cloth without having to change it. The wet fabric will help reduce swelling and soothe the pain.
Cool Glass of Wine (No Ice)
Drinking a nice, cold glass of wine can be good for the soul. Unfortunately, some circumstances make it pretty much impossible to get a bucket of ice. Luckily, all you wine lovers out there don’t have to worry. Here is a vintage hack that can help.
All you have to do is wrap the bottle in a piece of woolen cloth. Then, put it in the sink under running tap water for about ten minutes and a nice cool bottle of wine is ready to be enjoyed. I don’t know how this works exactly… but it’s all the magic of science.