10 Smart Uses For Sandpaper You’ll Wish You Knew Sooner

If you're only using sandpaper on your woodworking projects, you're tapping just a fraction of its potential. Here's how to put sandpaper to work all around the house.

New uses for sandpaper
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Clever sandpaper uses that will save you time, money and effort

Variations of sandpaper have been used throughout time, from shark skin to crushed shells and seeds. Most modern versions of sandpaper are variants of the 3M brand waterproof sandpaper, which was invented back in 1921. If you’re wondering how relevant all this is, well, it probably isn’t. But what is relevant is that sandpaper has lots of nifty applications around the home. Here are 10 cool sandpaper uses you’ll wish you knew sooner.

Uses for sandpaper - remove scuffs from suede
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Use sandpaper to remove scuff marks from suede

A little fine-grit sandpaper and a gentle touch is great for removing (or at least minimizing) an ink stain or small scuff mark on suede clothing or shoes. Afterward, bring up the nap with a toothbrush or nailbrush. You might avoid an expensive trip to the dry cleaner!

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Uses for sandpaper - remove stubborn grout stains
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Remove stubborn grout stains with sandpaper

Sometimes your bathroom abrasive cleaner is just not abrasive enough. Get tough on grout stains with fine-grit sandpaper. Fold the sandpaper and use the folded edge to sand in the grout seam. Be careful not to sand the tile and scratch the finish.

Discover more brilliant bathroom cleaning tips.

Uses for sandpaper - emery board for nails
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Make an emery board from a scrap of sandpaper

If you don’t have an emery board handy the next time you need to smooth your nails, just raid the sandpaper stash in the garage workshop. Look for a piece marked 120 grit or 150 grit on the back.

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Uses for sandpaper - deter slugs from potted plants
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Use sandpaper to deter slugs

Slugs are truly the unwelcome guests that will never leave, but you can stop them from getting into your potted plants in the first place. Put those used sanding disks to work under the bases of your pots, making sure the sandpaper is wider than the pot base.

Get to know more gardening tips.

Iron on ironing board
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Use sandpaper to hold pleats while ironing

If you’re a pleat perfectionist, keep some fine- or medium-grit sandpaper handy with your iron. Put the sandpaper under the pleat to hold it in place while you iron a nice sharp fold.

Check out more helpful laundry hacks.

Sewing needle and thread
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Sharpen sewing needles with a scrap of sandpaper

Think twice before throwing out a used piece of fine-grit sandpaper; the unused edges or corners are perfect for tucking into your sewing box. Poking your sewing needles through sandpaper a few times, or twisting them inside a folded piece of sandpaper, will make them sharper than ever.

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Sandpaper uses - sharpen scissors
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Sharpen your scissors with sandpaper

Are your scissor cuts less than crisp? Try cutting through a sheet of fine-grit sandpaper to finish off the edge and keep your cuts clean.

Here’s how to get the most out of your kitchen scissors.

Woman holding a stack of folded sweaters
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Use sandpaper to remove fuzzy pills on sweaters

If you’re fighting a losing battle with the fuzz balls on your sweaters, a little sandpaper will handle them. Use any grit, and rub lightly in one direction.

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Leather soles
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Roughen slippery leather soles with sandpaper

New shoes with slippery soles can send you flying, so take a little sandpaper and a little time to sand across the width of the soles and roughen up the slick surface. It’s thriftier and easier than taking your new shoes to a repair shop to have new rubber soles put on.

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Use sandpaper to open a stuck jar - pickles
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Use sandpaper to open a stuck jar

Having a tough time opening a jar? Grab a piece of sandpaper and place it grit side down on the lid. The sandpaper should improve your grip enough to do the job.

Now that you’ve got these sandpaper uses under your belt, check out 40 genius aluminum foil hacks.

Originally Published in Extraordinary Uses for Ordinary Things

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