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Tea Bag Hack: How to Use Tea Bags to Eliminate Odors in Your Fridge

If you swing open your refrigerator door and get hit by a nasty smell, your first instinct is probably to rummage through the food containers and plastic bags to fish out the rotten culprit. Good move. But even after removing the offender, many times there’ll be a tinge of unpleasant odors still lingering in your chill box. Maybe it’s a spill, or perhaps it’s just the combination of smells from different leftover foods. Either way, after you’ve done all you can to clean your fridge yet still catch a whiff, the solution is to enlist a few tea bags to neutralize those odors.

Although tea’s primary purpose is to make a tasty beverage, it also has the unique ability to offset smells. As a deodorizer, tea doesn’t just mask odors, it absorbs the nasty fumes and refreshes the space. In addition, a tea bag can impart lovely scents to the air around it depending on the flavor of the leaves. Peppermint, lemon, and cinnamon are some of the best for this task.

The fact that tea is a natural product also makes it ideal for use in refrigerators where there’s a high chance of coming in contact with food. Therefore, in keeping with food safety, tea bags are much safer than commercial deodorizers that most likely contain harmful chemicals you wouldn’t want anywhere near your edibles. Now, with tea bag in hand, here’s how to deodorize your fridge.

How to implement the tea bag tip

Glass bowl with used tea bags

First, note that you don’t have to get new tea bags — this tip is one of the best ways to re-use tea bags that have already completed their beverage-making responsibilities. Collect the tea bags, put them in a small bowl, and place them in the refrigerator. After some time you’ll notice the bad odor has disappeared and now there’s a sweet aroma of the tea. However, with time, the tea’s deodorizing power will decline, requiring you to replace the tea bags with a fresh batch. You can make this swap after three or four days.

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Alternatively, there’s another method to implement the tea bag tip. Instead of just placing the tea bags in the fridge, steep them in hot water in a bowl. Once the tea water cools, use it to wipe the inside of the refrigerator. Apart from neutralizing the odors, this method also makes use of tea’s cleaning abilities. The natural chemicals in tea called tannins have antiseptic properties, resulting in a fridge that’s both fresh and clean. So the next time you finish enjoying your cup of tea, don’t throw away that tea bag — give it a second life and an opportunity to clean and get rid of bad kitchen smells.

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