We know we can drink it — and drink, and drink, and drink it… — but did you know that vodka can be used from everything from dulling dental pains to banishing soap scum? Here are 10 surprising uses for the popular distilled drink.

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make the Crunchiest fried chicken

Fried chicken isn’t even worth eating unless you can count on that delicious crispy crust. Did you know, adding a bit of vodka to the batter can help fried foods reach maximum crispiness? Because vodka evaporates more quickly than water, the batter will dry out faster, creating larger bubbles in the batter resulting in a crispier crust for your fried chicken.

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Everyday cleaning

If cleaning with harsh chemical give you the creeps, consider vodka. First, soak a cloth in the clear liquid, and the tackle areas with difficult soap scum or water spots. Prevent mildew from growing by spritzing your bathroom tiles with vodka. Let the stuff soak for about 15 minutes then scrub with an old toothbrush before rinsing. It works wonders on glass too. Spray it on windows and wipe with a cloth for a streak-free shine.

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Remove goo

Peeling off price tags or window stickers can leave behind sticky residue. Soak a small corner of a towel with vodka and scrub the gunk. Rinse with water and you’re back to the original smooth surface.

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Weed Killer

Weed killers and pesticides are notorious for their environmentally toxic ingredients. Banish weeds without wondering what harm you’re causing to local wildlife. In a medium-sized spray bottle, mix vodka with water and add a few drops of everyday dish washing soap. Spritz directly on the unwanted weeds.

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Make Gems sparkle

Brighten your baubles with a five minute soak in vodka. They’ll appear cleaner and less tarnished. It’s safe for diamonds and other gemstones.

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Elimiate poison ivy itching

Uh oh! After a long day outside, you see a red rash beginning to crawl up your leg. You’ve brushed against poison ivy, and you’ll need a quick fix for that nagging itching sensation. This annoying side effect is caused by a chemical that the three-leaf stemmed plant leaves on your skin. Pour vodka directly on the affected areas. The alcohol will wash away any of the chemical residue and should minimize itching and help the healing.

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Soothe Toothaches

Dental pains come at the worst times. If you can’t make it to a dentist right way, you’ll be looking for a quick pain reliever for that toothache or mouth pain. Try swishing vodka. It’s a natural antiseptic, so not only does it kill bacteria, but it can numb the area and ease your discomfort until you can make an appointment with a professional.

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Save a day at the beach

Jellyfish are known for their painful stings, but that vodka bottle you snuck in your beach bag just might come to the rescue. Pour the liquor onto the wound to disinfect, while healing the hurt.

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Enjoy Flowers longer

Vodka can kill the bacteria that builds up on the inside of the vase and around the cut stems. Add one teaspoon of vodka to one liter of water (be sure not to overdo it!). This will keep your bouquet looking beautiful longer.

freshen musty towels

Maybe you took towels to the beach, or maybe, you left your hot yoga towel in your gym bag overnight. Maybe you’re just plagued by the humidity of summer. There are many reasons why your towels might not be smelling as fresh as they should even after laundering — tough stenches can linger long after the load has been washed. Try adding 1/3 cup vodka directly into your washing machine along with your favorite detergent. Let the cycle fill up the machine, then turn off to let the towels soak for an hour. Restart the machine, and let it finish the cycle. Have a sweet smelling savasana!


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Meghan is a full-time writer exploring the fun facts behind food. She lives a healthy lifestyle but lives for breakfast, dessert and anything with marinara. She’s thrown away just as many meals as she’s proud of.