Unusual Uses for Garlic Slideshow
Slice open a clove of raw, fresh garlic and apply it to breakouts as a home remedy for acne. Your skin won’t smell terribly good, but the antibacterial properties of garlic will help lessen the appearance of acne, even those deep acne cysts that can otherwise be difficult to treat.
Whiteflies, aphids, cabbage loopers, and squash bugs. All of these creepy-crawlies and more can decimate the beautiful organic garden you’ve been tending all season. Ward them off with an all-natural garlic pesticide spray. Mince three garlic cloves and let them sit in two tablespoons of mineral oil for 24 hours. Then strain out the garlic and add the oil, along with a teaspoon of liquid dish soap, to a pint of water in a spray bottle. Spray on infested plants.
Cold Sore Treatment
These unsightly lesions always seem to pop up at the most inopportune times, like the morning before a big date. Raw garlic may work just as well as commercial medical treatments, though the acidity may cause discomfort at first. Cut a garlic clove in half and place it directly on the cold sore for 10 minutes, several times a day. Garlic supplements in capsule form may also speed up the healing process.
If you don’t mind smelling like Italian dressing, garlic can work wonders in warding off pesky mosquitoes without the use of DEET and other potentially toxic chemicals. Try this oddball garlic mosquito spray: Let a few minced cloves of garlic infuse in an ounce of mineral oil for 24 hours, strain, and mix the garlic-scented oil with two cups of water and one teaspoon of freshly squeezed lemon juice. Strain again if necessary and pour into a spray bottle.
Did you know that garlic juice is a natural adhesive? While it's not up to any major jobs, it can be used to fill in hairline cracks in glass and hold them together. Crush a clove of garlic and rub its sticky, viscous juice into the cracks and wipe away the excess.
Need natural flea protection for your dog? Consider garlic. Many natural pet health stores sell capsules of garlic and brewers yeast, which are taken orally to discourage fleas from biting. You can also grate a small amount of fresh garlic onto your dog’s food once per day, but don’t overdo it, as it may be harmful in large amounts.
Garlic is a potent natural antifungal, making it ideal for treating fungal infections like the irritating and itchy athlete’s foot. Add a few cloves of crushed garlic to warm water in a foot bath and soak the affected foot for 30 minutes.
A common folk remedy for centuries, garlic can indeed kill the bacteria that cause ear infections. Of course, this doesn’t mean you should shove a clove of garlic into your ear and hope for the best. Crush a clove of garlic with a press and place it in a teaspoon of hot olive oil for five minutes. Strain, allow to cool, and drip a few drops at a time into your ear canal. You can also purchase garlic oil made for this purpose at natural health food stores.
Splinters suck. They’re painful to remove and sometimes they slice too far into the skin to pull out. Instead of waiting for it to come out on its own, try this odd trick: Place a thin slice over the splinter and hold on with a bandage. The garlic should help the splinter work its way out of the skin within hours.
It’s not exactly common, but some women swear by using garlic as a facial cleanser to dry out acne and tighten and exfoliate the skin. It will definitely burn, so take care if you have any open wounds. Make a paste of finely mined garlic, olive oil, facial cleanser, and sugar; massage into skin in circular motions, then rinse.