By Tricia Goss
In the 1970s, the Colgate-Palmolive company introduced Irish Spring soap. The green and white striped bars boasted double deodorants for long-lasting protection. Since then, people have found alternate uses for the soup outside of the shower.
Some of these innovations are thanks to the soap’s ingredients, including sodium tallowate, which is derived from animal fat. Other uses lean on the unique fragrance of the suds. Glorious scent aside, many of these hacks will work just fine with any bar of soap — while others are unique to Irish Spring.
1. Repel Pests In The Garden
If you have deer, rabbits or other unwanted guests in your yard or vegetable patch, you might be able to deter them with a bar of Irish Spring or two. Slice the soap into half-inch cubes. Fill several pouches with the cubes and attach the pouches to wooden stakes. Place the stakes around your garden to ward off pests, who dislike the scent. Alternatively, you could just place the pouches on the ground around your yard.
2. Air Freshener
Help the air in any room of your home smell “fresh and clean as a whistle.” This Instructables post gives you the step-by-step to create your own air freshener.
3. Drawer Sachets
Keep clothing or linens from becoming stale or musty-smelling. Tuck a bar of Irish Spring (or another favorite scented soap) into a drawer. The scent will keep the fabric smelling fresh.
4. Cast Iron Soot
If you use a cast iron pot or skillet over an open fire, it can quickly become quite sooty. Prevent this problem by rubbing the bottom with a bar of soap prior to placing it on the coals. In this case, any brand of soap will do.
5. Deodorize Shoes
If your sneakers smell less than sweet, a fresh bar of Irish Spring or other fragrant deodorant soap can help. Simply tuck a fresh, opened bar of soap in each shoe and leave them overnight.
6. Calm Restless Legs
Restless leg syndrome (RLS) can keep you tossing and turning all night. If you’re losing sleep due to RLS or leg cramps, try tucking a bar of soap under your bottom sheet. Some people swear by Irish Spring, while others say Dial, Dove or Ivory work best, so you might need to try a few brands for the best result.
7. Lubricate Zippers
A stuck zipper can put a damper on your day. Rub a dry bar of soap along the teeth to lubricate them. Make sure to coat the teeth above and below the sticky area.
8. Fix Sticking Drawers
Similarly, you can use a bar of Irish Spring or other bath soap to lubricate a sticking wooden drawer. Simply rub the bar over any areas where the drawers meet the dresser.
9. Craft A Pincushion
When you’re sewing, crafting or altering a garment, stick pins and needles into a bar of soap. The oils in the soap will help the points glide more smoothly through the fabric. The fragrance of the soap is an added bonus.
10. Fix A Hole In The Wall
Soap can quickly patch nail holes. Choose a bar that closely matches the wall color. Dampen the soap and rub it over the hole until it disappears from view.
11. Stop A Squeaky Door
If a noisy interior door is making you nuts, stop it with soap. Take an old, dry bar of any soap and rub thoroughly into the crevices of the hinges. The soap will grease the hinge and quiet the squeak.
12. Treat Clothing Stains
Keep a bar of your favorite soap in the laundry room. Rub it directly onto oily stains as a pre-treatment. Soap works best on stains such as cosmetics, crayon or perspiration.
13. Make A Mirror Fogless
The next time you clean your bathroom mirror, follow up with some soap. Rub a dry bar of any soap all across the surface of the mirror. Wipe it off with a soft, dry cloth. The light layer left behind can prevent fog from shower steam.