Borax has been around for years and was originally discovered in Tibet in dry lake beds. It was commonly used during the 19th century for laundry and other cleaning purposes. Also known as sodium borate, Borax today is still used for many cleaning purposes as well as many other tasks. You can use it to make homemade laundry detergent, add a cleaning boost to any other detergent and even keep ants and other pests away.
Known most commonly as Mule Team Borax, you can find this powder at most grocery stores, Wal-Mart and many online shops. It is relatively inexpensive which makes it a great choice for many household jobs. The great part is that it takes very little Borax to get the job done. It has awesome cleaning properties and you can use it in so many different DIY recipes. We have a great collection of some of these cleaning purposes for you that are easy to make and will really make your life a little easier.
6. Renew Your Old China
If you have an old set of china that needs a little facelift, Borax is a good choice. You just have to soak old china in a sink filled with warm water and ½ cup of Borax. Leave the dishes soaking for at least 30 minutes and then simply rinse the Borax away and wash as usual.
Even really old china can get a beautiful new look when soaked in Borax. It will remove all of the dinginess and bring the shine back to your old dishes. Even yellowing that is caused by aging can be removed with Borax, although it is not recommended that you scrub your old china. It is best to simply let the Borax do its job by soaking as opposed to risking scratches by scrubbing.
7. Preserve Fresh Flowers
You will need to cut your flowers and place them in a box that contains the mixture you prefer. Make sure that the entire flower is sprinkled with the mixture and then simply seal the box with tape and leave it sealed for at least seven days. Your flowers will dry out and you can then do whatever you want with them.
Remember to strain out any moisture from your mixture and keep it for later use. Note that cut flowers from florists normally have a special water solution to preserve them and this method may not work on them.
8. Make Homemade Candles Burn Better
If you love making your own candles, you can use Borax to treat the wicks to reduce ash and smoke. You just have to dissolve 1 tablespoon of regular table salt along with 3 tablespoons of Borax in a cup of lukewarm water. Soak butcher’s twine or whatever twine you prefer to use in this solution for 24 hours. Once the twine has completely dried, you can use it to make candle wicks.
Borax will help to seal the wicks so that they do not cause major smoking issues or ash. They burn cleaner and give your homemade candles a much longer burning time overall.
9. Make Your Own Floam
Kids love floam and they will love that you can make it for them. Floam is fun to play with and easy to make with Borax. You need to mix together 2 teaspoons of Borax, ¾ cup of water and ¼ cup of Elmer’s glue. Begin by mixing the Borax with ½ cup of water. In another container, mix the glue and the additional ¼ cup of water together with food coloring. Pour the glue mixture into a Ziploc bag and add 3 tablespoons of the Borax mixture. It is important that you do not mix this solution yet. Add 1 and 2/3 cup of polystyrene beads or 2/3 cup of microbeads and 1 cup of bean bag filler. You could also use grated packing peanuts or Styrofoam. Seal the bag and knead until it is mixed well. Let sit for about 15 minutes and then knead again.
10. Give Laundry a Boost
Just like it was intended, Borax is still a great laundry booster. Just add about ½ cup to your laundry to see clothes that are cleaner and stain-free. It leaves clothes smelling better with no fake scent. Borax offers a natural scent, sort of like drying your clothes outside.
If you have really stubborn laundry stains like coffee, grass or even something that you can’t identify, you can use Borax as a pretreatment for stains. Just mix ½ cup of borax with a cup of warm water and allow the clothing to soak for about half an hour before laundering. Borax will help soften your hard water and is really effective at removing hard water stains from clothing and from your washing machine. It is safe for fabrics and can even be used to wash the most fragile delicates in your dresser.