33 Everyday Things You’ve Been Doing All Wrong

Tips & tricks
10 months ago

So you invite your friend over for a cup of tea. To speed things up, you decide to skip the 5-minute steeping time and squeeze the tea bag against the spoon. Your guest jumps off the couch and knocks the spoon off your hands.

Turns out that when you squeeze a teabag or tea leaves, you release too many tannins into your drink. Tannins are a class of molecules that are found in many fruits and vegetables, like pomegranates, berries, nuts, legumes, cloves, or vanilla. When you do things the proper way and wait, most of the tannins stay with the plant material. When you squeeze, it causes the same results as over-steeping your tea. It becomes too bitter and can stain your teeth.

Besides, draining a tea bag against the cup is a form of poor tea etiquette, just like slurping. Gee, now they tell me. The best you can do is wait for your tea to brew and then leave that bag on a saucer or throw it in the trash can.

Don’t peel bananas from the stem down. Uh, uh. Do it like the monkeys and go from the bottom up. Squeeze the tip of the fruit with your thumb and index finger. It will split the skin without mashing the banana, and you won’t lose even a bit of that potassium-filled fruit.

Don’t brush your teeth with horizontal movements only. Hold your toothbrush at a 45-degree angle to the gums and go in short strokes back and forth. Tilt the brush vertically and go up and down to clean the inside surfaces of the front teeth.

To avoid splashing things around, put a paper plate on your mixer’s beaters. It will be a great temporary cover.

When you’re cutting a loaf of crusty bread, turn it over and go from the bottom. It will be easier to slice on the soft side and you won’t squish the bread.

The right way to hold a pizza isn’t flatly like you’re used to, but in a U-shape to prevent it from flopping over. Pinch the crust a bit when you pick it up and all the toppings will stay inside.

Don’t pour your juice from the box with the opening on the bottom. Flip it over. When you do it from the top, you’ll be able to control the flow and stop it neatly and quickly.

You don’t have to run around the vehicle looking for the gas tank every time you arrive at a gas station. There should be an arrow on the gas gauge to let you know on which side to refuel your car.

If you can’t squeeze the juice out of a lemon, drop it in the microwave for about 10 seconds. Take it out, let it cool, slice it in half — now you can get the most out of it even with your bare hands. The lemon becomes much softer this way.

Instead of putting the hair clip’s wavy side up, flip it over. When you place its wavy side facing down, it gets a better grip on your hair.

You don’t have to take aluminum foil out of the package to get a piece of it. Most boxes have a perforated tab on either side. Punch it and take as much foil as you need with the roll inside the box.

Don’t pour your Chinese takeout out of the paper container. Unfold it carefully, and it will turn into a little plate you can eat out of.

Instead of just scrubbing pots and pans, boil some water inside and add a small amount of vinegar. Remove it from the heat and drain the vinegar down the sink. The gunk will come off easily.

Rub half a lemon around the bottom and sides of your cookware for extra shine. Sprinkle the board with lemon juice, and you won’t have to cry when cutting onions. You can also try dropping them in the freezer for 15 minutes or slice them underwater. This way, the sulfuric compounds that make you tear won’t reach your eyes.

Never defrost meat at room temperature or under hot water! In these conditions the bacteria that were in there before multiply. Yeah, they learned that in school. The safest way is to plan your cooking ahead and put the meat in its packaging in a pan in the fridge. If you can’t wait that long, plug up the sink and put your frozen food in cold water from the tap. Heat is transferred faster through water than air.

When trying to correct a silly mistake or hide something after you’ve changed your mind, don’t just scribble lines over your handwriting. It will still be perfectly readable. Write some random letters on top of what you’re trying to hide. Now no one will be able to read it.

Don’t spread your food over the plate evenly when microwaving it. The center takes longer to warm up, and the edges might get burnt. Leave an empty round space in the middle, and the entire meal will be perfectly warm at the same time.

Instead of trying to pull the bit of the knot passing through the main knot, tap it with a spoon or a hammer. Then twist the loose end. When you loosen it, push it through the knot. It should untie easily.

To peel garlic quickly, hit the whole head with your palm against the top of the bulb. When you separate the cloves, put them in a bowl and cover it with a lid or another bowl. Shake it well for 15 seconds. The cloves will slam against the sides of the container and each other and get separated from their skins.

Stop dipping your hand into a bag of popcorn, especially if you’re sharing it with others. Rip the bag on the side and voilà — you can pick it up gracefully.

If you have standard in-ear headphones, don’t wear them straight down with the cable hanging on the front. Instead, loop them over the ear and they won’t fall out so easily.

Don’t try to clean a blender by scrubbing it. Fill it with water and add some dishwashing liquid, then blend it.

Holding the steering wheel at 12 o’clock or 10hr and 2hr as you’ve probably been taught, won’t give you the best control over your car. The right way to do it is to position your hands at 9hr and 3hr. This way the airbags will be able to fully inflate in case of an accident.

Stop using cotton swabs to clean your ears. They can damage your hearing. In fact, you need some wax in there to waterproof the ear canal. You can clean around the outside of the ear with cotton swabs, but that’s it.

Don’t buy unripe avocados and put them in the fridge waiting for them to get ready. Fresh-picked avocados need room temperature to ripen within 3 to 6 days.

Instead of putting chocolate in the fridge, store it in a cool dry place. The temperature and humidity of the fridge make chocolate flavors dull. Plus, it can absorb odors from the fridge or get a white coating. If you keep it in the pantry it will stay stable for months. If it lasts that long. Certainly not around me.

If you’ve broken enough nails adding new keys to the key ring, try doing it another way. Staple removers have teeth that are thin enough to slide between the rings. Use one of those to spread the key ring apart and add as many keys as you need safely.

To cool down a beverage in less than 15 minutes, wrap a damp paper towel around the bottle before you drop it in the freezer. The water from the towel will quickly evaporate and cool. It will help the surface of the bottle chill faster than the air in the freezer would do alone.

To defrost ground beef faster, flatten it, place it in separate plastic bags, and seal it tightly. You can also drop it all in one bag and then take a long chopstick, ruler, or anything with a straight edge to divide it into sections. When ready to thaw, you can break off a section and place it in cold water. It will be good for cooking in less than half an hour.

The right way to use a toilet seat cover is to put the side with the flap towards the front. This way it will fit better and prevent particles and germs from collecting there.

Don’t keep matching bedding separately. Fold your fitted sheet, flat sheet and pillowcase in a rectangle and tuck the bundle inside a matching pillowcase. It will save you a bunch of time you’d spend putting together a set. Plus, it makes your closet more organized.

To prevent sticky notes from curling where the adhesive is, don’t tear them bottom-to-top. Go from one side of the pad and pull the note to the other.

When you’re heating up pasta, rice, or vegetables, cover the dish with a damp paper towel. Since you normally cook them in water, these meals need some moisture to taste good after reheating. You can also put a glass of water in the microwave with pizza. It will keep the crust fresh and crispy.


Get notifications

Related Reads