I’m sure we’ve all heard by now that using cotton swabs to remove earwax from your ear canals can be counterproductive, and even dangerous! But don’t let that sour you on cotton swabs, because they’re seriously useful little tools that have a myriad of uses! Today I’m sharing some of my favorite ways to use those humble cotton swabs for beauty, cleaning, crafting, and more!
Clean up eye makeup. Use a slightly dampened cotton swab to wipe away rogue mascara, smeared eye shadow, or perfect liquid liner.
Apply eye cream. Use the tip of a cotton swab to gently apply eye creams.
Apply skin clearing medications. Blemish creams can be really drying to your skin. Avoid excess flakiness around blemishes by using a cotton swab to apply blemish treatments to a more precise location.
Clean up messy manicures. A cotton swab is the perfect tool to gently clean up at-home manicures. Simply dip the swab into a bit of polish remover and swipe away!
Smooth out cake-y foundation. Foundation has a sneaky way of settling into fine lines on your face. Smooth out those foundation lines by dipping a cotton swab into a bit of moisturizer and using it to blend the foundation.
Clean piercings. A cotton swab dampened with a drop of Melaleuca oil or some saline solution makes the perfect tool for cleaning any crustiness from healed piercings. (Avoid using cotton swabs with fresh piercings, as the fibers can get caught in a healing piercing and potentially cause issues.)
Remove stubborn eye makeup. After a night out, removing eye makeup can be a real pain! Help remove any stubborn eyeliner, mascara, or eyeshadow by using a cotton swab dipped in makeup remover.
Fill in brows. A cotton swab can serve as a great brow brush in a pinch!
Apply adhesive to false lashes. Using the tip of a cotton swab can help ensure you have an even layer of glue without any globs.
Keep potted products sanitary. For beauty products that are in pots instead of bottles, using a cotton swab instead of dirty fingers can help keep those products germ-free.
Around the House
Clean electronics and keyboards. We use many of our electronic devices every day, yet we rarely think about cleaning them! Use a cotton swab dipped in isopropyl alcohol to clean the nooks and crannies of phones, tablets, and desktop computers. They’re also great at cleaning the crevices between the keys of your keyboard.
Clean your car interior. A damp cotton swab can help get dust and grime out of the crannies of your car interior, like door handles, window buttons, vents, and gear shift.
Remove lint from a hair dryer. Lint build-up in your hair dryer can create a potential fire hazard! Help keep it clean by swabbing the air vent on the rear of your hair dryer with a damp cotton swab.
Touch up paint on furniture and walls. You don’t need to haul out brushes or rollers for quick paint touchups around the house! Use a cotton swab for painting over small scuffs and scrapes.
Unstick a zipper. Dip a cotton swab into a small amount of lip balm or oil and swab it around a stuck zipper to help it slide loose.
Shine up your jewelry. A cotton swab makes a great jewelry cleaning tool! Just dampen a swab with a jewelry cleaning solution, and use it to clean rings, earrings, and the nooks and crannies of pendants and brooches.
Arts & Crafts
Decorate with polka dots. Use the tip of a cotton swab to make fun, small polka dots on your DIY or art projects.
Clean up chalk work. Chalkboard signs are all the rage these days, but making one that smear-free can be a nightmare! Use a damp cotton swab to easily wipe away chalk smudges for a super clean finish.
Apply glue to projects. A cotton swab can help you easily and accurately apply glue to your DIY projects.
Use as a paintbrush for small hands. A cotton swab dipped in paint makes the perfect paintbrush for tiny toddler hands!