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The Surprising $2 Tool That Every Household Needs

Using a box cutter to open an Amazon box.

While I try to avoid cluttering up my house with single-purpose tools and gadgets, I also recognize that using the right tool for the job can save you a lot of time and effort in the long run! That’s definitely true of the humble box cutter, and you’ll learn some of the most practical household uses for box cutters in this post.

Like anyone who does a lot of their shopping online, I open and break down a lot of boxes. Before it occurred to me to buy an actual box cutter, I had plenty of unfortunate incidents with knives, scissors, and other means of opening packages.

Lucky for me, box cutters have great safety features, so even someone as accident-prone as I am can use them safely. They’re also cheap, lightweight, and compact enough to fit in even the most cluttered of junk drawers.

If you don’t already own one, the uses for box cutters in the list below will give you plenty of compelling reasons to change that!

Box Cutter Or Utility Knife? There’s A Difference!

While there is some overlap, box cutters and utility knives aren’t exactly the same thing. As more of a multipurpose tool, utility knives are sharper and more robust, while box cutters are typically reserved for cutting cardboard, tape, plastic strips, etc.

If you’re shopping for a box cutter, you might like these ones:

7 Uses For Box Cutters Around The House

1. Cutting Open Boxes

As their name suggests, box cutters are indeed excellent for cutting open boxes and packages. A box cutter with a short, sharp blade makes short work of cardboard and packing tape while protecting your fingers and the contents of the package.

Once you start using a box cutter to open packages, you’ll wonder why you put up with knives and scissors for so long!

2. Removing Staples

Simply place the tip of your blade under the edges of the staple and pry them away from the surface. It’s quick and easy!

3. Trimming Loose Threads

Next time you notice a thread unraveling from your favorite shirt or sweater, just pull out your box cutter and give it a quick trim.

4. Crafting

Box cutters may not be quite as precise as an X-Acto knife, but they come pretty close! Whether you’re using cereal boxes for crafting or repurposing old Amazon boxes, a box cutter can make a valuable addition to any arsenal of craft tools.

5. Scraping Stickers

You may need to remove the blade from its handle to use it for this purpose, but a box cutter can help you remove stickers and labels in no time.

6. Scraping Paint

Trying to remove paint from glass, metal, hardware, or tile? A box cutter can help you quickly (and safely) clean up those items.

7. Cutting Zip Ties

I use zip ties around the house for all sorts of purposes, and my box cutter makes them so much easier to remove than using scissors. You can even use the point of the blade to loosen zip ties, assuming you’re using a variety that can be loosened.

Do you use a box cutter at home?

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Jill Nystul (aka Jillee)

Jill Nystul is an accomplished writer and author who founded the blog One Good Thing by Jillee in 2011. With over 30 years of experience in homemaking, she has become a trusted resource for contemporary homemakers by offering practical solutions to everyday household challenges.I share creative homemaking and lifestyle solutions that make your life easier and more enjoyable!

About Jillee

Jill Nystul

Jill’s 30 years of homemaking experience, make her the trusted source for practical household solutions.

About Jillee

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  • How do you scrape paint from glass with a box cutter? I’ve always used a single edge razor blade which can be held flat on the glass to avoid scratching the glass. And I’d be afraid that the blade would break off using it to remove staples – those blades are great for a lots of things but they’re really not that substantial. I carried one in my pocket for 20 years at work.

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