20 Clever Uses for Plastic Wrap You’ll Wish You Knew Sooner

If you're only using plastic wrap to keep your leftovers fresh, you're tapping just a fraction of its potential.

Keep bananas fresh
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Use plastic wrap to keep bananas fresh

Bananas, much like avocados, are notorious for quickly moving from fresh to over-ripe. To slow down the process and keep your bananas fresh, try wrapping the stems of the fruit with plastic wrap.

Paint Brush plastic wrap hack
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Use plastic wrap to keep your paintbrush from drying out

Taking a break from your home makeover? Don’t let your paint rollers or brushes dry out overnight. Simply wrap the paint-covered brushes and rollers with plastic wrap until you’re ready for the next coat.

Discover more painting tips the pros don’t want you to know.

Plastic wrap uses
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Protect your phone

Screen protectors can run anywhere from $15 to $40, but one box of plastic wrap is roughly $4 or so, making a DIY plastic wrap protector a no-brainer. First, make sure to clean your phone screen. Then cut the plastic wrap, so it’s about three inches bigger than your screen. Stretch and smooth it over your screen and wrap any excess in the back of your phone before cutting it off. Then put your regular phone case back in place.

Here are 10 iPhone hacks you’ll want to try right away.

Keep flowers fresh
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Keep flowers fresh

Extend the life of your fresh bouquet with plastic wrap. Cut a rectangle of plastic wrap and place a damp paper towel on top. Then put the ends of your flowers in the middle of the moist paper towel and fold them both up to keep the flowers fresh. You can use a bow or tissue paper to cover up this plastic wrap hack.

Discover more home hacks that’ll stretch your decorating dollar.

Use plastic wrap to trap flies
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Trap fruit flies

Pesky fruit flies are no match for plastic wrap. Here’s what to do: grab a small cup and a few pieces of fruit. Then use plastic wrap to cover the top and poke a hole in the middle with a pen or pencil. The flies find their way inside the cup but have trouble escaping the plastic wrap, effectively trapping them.

Find out how to get rid of fungus gnats.

Use plastic wrap to fix shattered makeup
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Fix shattered makeup

You don’t have to toss out every broken makeup compact. Instead, try using plastic wrap to firm-up the powder. First, cover the powder compact with plastic wrap. Then crush the powder with your fingers or a spoon, so it’s loose. Add a drop or two of rubbing alcohol to make a paste. Use the same spoon to smooth this out and wait 24 hours for it to dry before using.

Check out more uses for rubbing alcohol all around the house.

plastic wrap toilet
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Unclog your toilet

If the plunger fails, it might be time to try this technique for unclogging your toilet. Use plastic wrap to cover the toilet bowl and flush. Once the plastic swells, you should push down on creating enough pressure to unblock the pipeline.

plastic wrap heater
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Lower your heating bill

To help cut heating costs, try using plastic shrink film on your windows. Just apply double-sided tape to the perimeter of the window, cut and apply a slightly oversized piece of plastic to the tape, and seal the deal by using heat from a hairdryer to the film.

This energy-saving guide will save you money all year long.

Plastic wrap uses
Photo: Shutterstock

Stop bottle leakage

Frequent flyers often learn the hard way that some bottle caps are bad at their job. Avoiding shampoo, conditioner and body wash spills is easy with a piece of plastic wrap. Remove the lids or caps, place a piece of plastic wrap over the top of the bottle, then secure the lids back into place. It’s an easy packing hack that ensures everything that’s in the bottle stays in the bottle.

Here are more travel hacks that could save your next vacation.

plastic wrap poached egg
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Poach a perfect egg

This plastic wrap hack could be the key to finally perfecting poached eggs. Start by covering a bowl in plastic wrap. (Be sure to use good quality plastic wrap that has a melting point between 250 to 290 Fahrenheit, so the plastic doesn’t melt during the poaching process.) Spritz the wrap with cooking spray, so the egg doesn’t stick. Crack your egg into the lined bowl. Tie and knot the corners of the plastic to keep the egg in place. Then simmer your water and cook the eggs for six minutes to poach them perfectly.

Here’s expert advice on how to buy the best eggs.

plastic wrap shelves
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Line your shelves

Cover your shelves with plastic wrap to make them easier to clean. The plastic is easy to peel off, catches leaks, and means there’s one less thing to scrub down in your kitchen.

Find out how to clean absolutely everything in your kitchen.

plastic wrap freezer
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Prevent freezer burn

Never let good ice cream go to waste because of freezer burn again. Cover the top of your ice cream container—or anything else you freeze—and put the lid back on top. This double-duty system keeps frozen food fresh.

Discover the secret to freezing cold cuts.

plastic wrap wine
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De-cork wine

Some wines are “corky,” meaning they have a musty chemical smell that makes the wine unpleasant to drink thanks to TCA—a natural compound found in wine. You can ball up some PVC-based plastic wrap and place it in a pitcher or jar of wine to lessen this stink.

Check out these clever uses for corks around the house.

plastic wrap paint brushes cans
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Keep paint from drying out

If you’re saving the remnants of an opened can of paint, use plastic wrap to keep it fresh. Seal the cans with the wrap and then cover with the lid. This not only preserves the paint, but also keeps the harsh smell at bay, too.

plastic wrap stickers
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Take off stickers and labels easily

You’d love to keep that big glass pickle jar for storage, but it’s got an ugly label stuck on the front… Don’t give up on it just yet. Start by soaking the sticker with warm water and dish soap. Then completely wrap the wet container with plastic wrap and wait five minutes. The label should remove easily after taking off the wrap.

These cleaning hacks take the hassle out of housekeeping.

plastic wrap mug
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Make any cup a to-go cup

Ever notice how you can never find the right lid for the to-go cup you’ve just poured your morning coffee into? Skip the hassle and use plastic wrap to make any cup a to-go cup. Simply cover the top of your cup and poke in a reusable straw.

plastic wrap jewelry
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Keep jewelry from tangling

If you’ve ever lost a half hour trying to untangle a fine gold chain, you need to try this plastic wrap hack. Cut out a piece of plastic wrap and lay your jewelry on top. Then cut a second piece of plastic to smooth over your necklaces and bracelets and voila!

These home organization hacks will help you conquer clutter.

Plastic wrap uses
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Protect clothes

Kitchen aprons are great and all, but they’re just another thing to clean after cooking. Try using a piece of plastic wrap instead to cover your chest and clothes when you’re stirring that simmering pot of tomato sauce. You can peel it off and contain the mess after you’re done and save time, too.

If you prefer using fabric aprons, these brilliant laundry hacks will make quick work of stains.

plastic wrap lettuce
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Keep lettuce fresh

Keeping lettuce fresh with plastic wrap is similar to keeping flowers fresh with plastic wrap. Take your bowl of lettuce and cover it with a damp paper towel before covering the whole bowl in plastic wrap. It should keep for seven days or so.

Find out 40 kitchen hacks that’ll change the way you cook.

Plastic wrap uses
Photo: Shutterstock

Make moving easier

Move smarter, not harder. Use plastic wrap to cover drawers that still have clothes in them. This makes moving them easier and takes out the step of emptying the drawers. You can also wrap the furniture in plastic wrap, protecting your clothes and making sure the drawers don’t move at all. This tip also works for sealing utensils in utensil trays so they stay in place during the move.

Next, check out 40 aluminum foil hacks to save time, money and effort.

Reader's Digest
Originally Published on Reader's Digest

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