Disclaimer: This Article was First Published On forreason.com and is published here with approval.
Though most of us dreamed of the days where we could stay at home for weeks on end without doing anything, now that we're actually living our dream, it's safe to say most of us are losing our minds. But maybe we're just going about it all wrong.
Maybe now is the time to use our boredom in ways to make our lives easier. Who doesn't want to have an easier life even in the current situation? Well, some online users are using their minds for the best by coming up with smart life hacks that you can use in and outside of your home. Follow these next hacks for home improvement, and please tell us below if you've ever tried any of them while cooking at home :)
No mask, no problem
When the virus hit everyone around the world, people began to panic as they ran to shops and emptied their wallets, bulk buying whatever they could get their hands on. Of course, most people stocked up on essentials, including masks and gloves, leaving many without them.
But you don't need a medicinal-grade mask to take extra precautions when trying to stay safe. This guy decided to make his own mask by wearing his sweatshirt the other way around, using the hood to cover his face. Not a bad idea if you don't have any masks lying around your house.
Most of us have a shoebox full of our old phones. Most of us are too sentimental to give them away or recycle them, so they collect dust in our closets. But, if you have a bunch of old smartphones at your disposal, and they're still working, why don't you put them to good use?
Wipe the dust off of them and use them as security cameras for your home. Sure, they may not have motion detection, but if you place them at the entry points of your home, they're just as good as actual security cameras.
Dog bowl garden
The one thing about having animals in your home is that you're constantly cleaning after the. With dogs, they dive into their water bowls, leaving pools of water everywhere, and if you're trying to stay clean and healthy, that's not helping.
This doesn't mean your dog needs to live outside; instead, you just need to use this hack. By creating a miniature garden around their bowl, with moss-like plants that love water. They'll soak up the splashes, and your floor will stay nice and clean. Not a bad solution, if you ask us.
Don't have a smaller baking dish?
Not all of us live with four other people where we use a full baking dish for cooking our food. Many people live alone or with one other person, and let's be honest; not many dishes are made for one or two servings. So, what can people do?
Well, one person decided to make their own customized baking dish by using aluminum to hold their food to one side of the baking dish. It's a pretty smart hack to make baking easier for smaller sized homes.
If there's one thing people aren't happy about with the current situation, it's their inability to go to a gym. Most people, if they were gym freaks, they had strict schedules of what they would do when at the gym. And now, that routine has been killed.
But this doesn't mean you can't work out just because the gym isn't working. People are finding their own ways to stay active at home, and this one person made their own backyard gym. They have everything they need to keep in shape.
No dentist? No problem!
When it comes to being stuck at home, you never know what could happen. Being on lockdown is intense enough, but what happens if your retainer breaks? There's no chance for you to go to a dentist until the current situation is over.
But you also don't want to go days, even weeks without wearing your retainer. Well, you can always make your own short-term retainer for the time being. If you have moldable plastic, place it around your teeth, creating a mold of them. And ta-da! You have yourself a makeshift retainer.
Not so sloppy joes
The thought of eating a sloppy joe is always a fun one until you're actually eating a sloppy joe. The minute you have meat sauce dripping down your arm, you remember why they're called sloppy joes. So, how can you enjoy a sloppy joe without it being so sloppy?
Instead of making a sloppy joe with a hamburger bun, use hotdog buns. They're a lot less sloppy, but give the same taste as a traditional sloppy joe. See? Problem solved! Now we can all continue to enjoy not-so sloppy joes.
Riding a bicycle is a lot of fun, but you always have to put on shoes before doing it, or else it'll kill the soles of your feet. And let's be honest, sometimes you just don't want to put on shoes. We all have our lazy moments.
One twelve-year-old from Reddit decided to solve this problem by putting squares of carpet over the pedals. That way, they could bike ride without any shoes on and enjoy a painless bicycle ride. The perfect solution that was under our noses the entire time.
Social distancing 101
If there's one phrase that has been circling around the world, it's 'social distancing.' Now, that phrase is truly open to interpretation. There's not just one way to practice social distancing. People are coming up with wild ideas to make sure people stay 2 meters away from them, and we have to say, this is the most creative.
Attach a couple of pool noodles to your head, and you'll be amazed at how easy it is to keep people away from you now, and probably even years ahead. Let's just say, pool noodles are a strong statement.
Bed tablet holder
If there's one thing people have started to dislike, it's holding their tablets and phones. After hours of staring at their screens, people's wrists and arms start to cramp. The last thing you want is to leave the house with tendonitis. But this one Reddit user made sure that wasn't going to happen during their curfew.
Though this may look a little complex, if you have the time, you might as well create your own bed tablet holder. That way, you stay nice and tucked in your bed while watching YouTube.
Don't throw out your rubber gloves
You've probably heard enough about gloves during the last days, but we're not going to be lecturing you to wear gloves. If you've been using rubber gloves instead of latex ones, you know they're reusable. But even when you're done using them, don't throw them out.
Instead, you can cut them up and use the rubber as elastic bands for your cables and basically anything else you want to tie up. The beauty of rubber gloves is that they never stop being useful. Get those rubber gloves out and start cutting!
Are You looking for a pretty big DIY project to keep you busy these days? It looks like we found just the project for you. You'll definitely need some tools, but if you're a handy person, you have the basics in your toolbox.
If you live in a small space or just need extra storage space, turn your bed into a walk-in closet. Okay, sure, it doesn't look like the Kardashian's walk-in closet, but you have to admit, this is a great idea. And an even better way to spend your time nowadays.
Best way to clean your earbuds
You're probably looking to do just about anything right now while you're stuck indoors. Well, now that you're no longer spending hours on the train, listening to music, why don't you spend a couple of minutes cleaning your earbuds? The best part is you don't need much.
Take some putty or mold and wrap it around your earbuds. Then you just take the putty or mold off, and you have yourself a clean pair of earbuds. This way, your earbuds are ready to go when you have to go back to work (cause you will eventually go back to work).
Grated butter is the best butter
If there's one thing people have been doing more lately, it's baking and home cooking. People are getting creative a trying out loaves of bread, muffins, cakes, and cookies. No one is arguing against this. If anything, the world needs more baking.
If you happen to be testing your pie-making skills, there's a quick trick you can do to make sure your crusts are flaky and tasty. Instead of using blocks of butter, grate it instead. This will ensure your crusts are soft, flaky, and delicious. Not a bad hack if you want to walk out of this indoor situation as a baking master.
Indulge in the avocado sale
When you're at the store, you've probably noticed that the avocados are on sale for ridiculously low prices. It's hard not to by them by bulks. But you also know how quickly avocados go bad. So, do you risk it and buy a bunch in hopes of eating all of them in a day or two? Or do you play it safe?
Well, go for it and buy as much as you want. When you get home, peel them and cut them up into cubes before placing them into freezer bags. Freeze them up, and the next time you want avocado, you'll just take some out of your freezer.
No-contact light switch
Like it's been said before thousands of times, the less you touch shared surfaces, the better. But that's easier said than done. Sometimes, we don't even think about shared surfaces like light switches. These are things that are getting touched hundreds of times a day by different people.
To reduce the spread of viruses, place a paper clip onto the light switch. It makes it easier to turn on and off the switches with your elbow. An easy no-contact fix that everyone can do.
Most of us use toothpicks to help get food out between the cracks of our teeth. There are some moments when you want to take a break from the toothpick, but you don't want to put it on a dirty table. Well, did you know that most toothpicks come with their own holders?
One Online user on discovered this, and well, now you're indoor staying just became a little more interesting. This takes tooth picking to a whole new level. Now you can pick, rest, and continue later.
DIY face shield
This is actually cool. We are pretty sure that the original intention was to create a mask for the incredible transparent super-hero.
But as always, he ditched the glasses saying they are outdated and out of style. We, however, kinda like it. Come on, stay fashionable while being able to see everything? This is brilliant!
Toilet paper door holder
Touching doorknobs and handles right now is a big no-no right now. Do you know how much bacteria is on an average door handle? You couldn't handle the numbers (no pun intended)! But seriously, door handles are a virus's best friend.
If you don't have a glove handy or your shirt, you can use a toilet paper roll to slip around the handle and open the door. When you're done using it, just throw it away. The good thing is that there's never a lack of toilet paper rolls.
How to make easier ramen noodles
If you've resorted to eating your emergency stock of ramen noodles, things are pretty rough at your place. If ramen noodles have become your only source of nutrients, it's clear you're over this crazy situation. But, you can make your ramen noodle eating experience even easier for yourself.
If you have a Keurig or other type of coffee maker, you can use the hot water from the machine to cook your noodles. You don't even have to boil any water - that's how easy cooking ramen noodles has become.
Your kids are driving you insane, and you've used up every possible trick up your sleeve. But you probably have some DIY projects around the house that you're not aware of. Well, good thing you're here. If your kid has outgrown their learning clock, why not let the redesign their clock face?
Maybe they're into Spongebob or superheroes; whatever it is that interests them, let them print and cut out images of their choice. It'll shave off a couple of hours, and they'll get to create some art of their own.
Most of us are trying to watch our weights while stuck inside the house for a long time. It's easy to lose yourself in pancakes, potato chips, and frozen pizza. But you can find other alternatives to enjoy in the morning, afternoon, and evening. Say hello to meat muffins. Okay, it doesn't sound so appetizing when you think of meat muffins, but just wait.
These can be ground sausages, ground meat, or chicken, mixed with spices of your choice. Then, you place them in a muffin tin and pop them into the oven. Scramble some eggs, and you have yourself a tasty meal.
Ultimate grocery list
When you're stuck at home, going to the grocery store is a big event. It's one you get extra dressed up for. But it's also important you don't forget anything. If not, you have to wait back in line and run the risk of your item out of stock. So, your grocery list needs to be exact.
Well, you don't need a piece of paper tucked in your pocket of things you need. Instead, get an erasable marker and write everything down on the fridge. Then take a photo of it. You have yourself the ultimate grocery list.
Maybe during this last couple of months, you've grown a love for horoscopes and chakras. You know you want to open your third eye. And we're supportive of your new hobby. But, you'll probably need to light some incents to get in the mood. Well, if you have incenses, then you're on a good start.
Though a common problem with incenses are that if you don't have a holder, it causes a huge mess. Get yourself a book, stick your incense in it and place it over a sink. You can wash the mess away and open your third eye at the same time.
No bowl cereal
We know, you are stuck at home and want to make your life as easy as possible. And when it comes to dishes, that's the last thing you want to be doing during this time. Who needs to eat out of a bowl anyways? That's so 2019. It's time to jazz things up and take living to a whole other level.
This Reddit user wasn't playing around when they came up with this idea. Rather than a bowl, they simply poured the milk into the cereal bag. Not all heroes wear capes. Some just want to live a simple life with their box of cereal.
Foot-only door opener
We all know one of the easiest ways to spread the virus is through touch. You may have washed your hands after going to the bathroom, but the minute you touch the door handle, it's over. Your hands are dirty again and could possibly be holding the virus.
So, eliminating the need to touch things is crucial. Using a foot door opener removes any need to touch the door handle and greatly reduces your risk of contracting the virus. Not a bad idea, right? If you're handy, you could make one for your home.
Smelly room hack
We have another smelly room hack that works wonders for people who need to freshen their homes while they are indoors for longer periods of time. It's spring, after all, you need to feel fresh and welcome the summer with open and breezy arms.
If you have a fan or heater, place a car freshener in front of the fan. That's all you have to do to get your house smelling fresh again. Don't let this indoor situation turn your home into a smelly one. We gotta keep it together, people!
At the store without gloves?
We all know that latex gloves have become as valuable as gold today. Most of us were too slow to jump on the latex glove train and don't have any to protect ourselves. But this doesn't mean you need to be gloveless when at the grocery store.
Use the vegetable and fruit bags, placing them around your hand. Sure, they're not as comfortable as latex gloves, but they're better than nothing. You'll be able to keep your hands safe and clean while you're out shopping.
Clean the house game
Entertaining children, as everyone with children already knows, is not easy, especially when they're not able to leave the house. Coming up with quick and easy ways to keep the children assumed is essential if you want to stay sane. So, one Reddit user created a game that not only keeps kids occupied.
The catch is this game also cleans the house at the same time. Make a square on the ground with tape, and tell your child they need to get everything into the square. Bam! An entertained child and a clean house!
If you're stuck at home with your entire family, there's probably some issues regarding the tv. There are only so many televisions in a home, and yet, everyone wants to watch what they want. Well, this one girl found a way to enjoy her tablet as if it was an actual tv.
While watching her shows, her family gets to enjoy their shows on tv. This really sounds like the perfect solution to everything, don't you think? This one idea saved a family from hours of arguing.
Fresh room smell
The last couple of months was a pretty depressing time for people. Instead of going outside, people spend hours glued to their phones while staying locked inside their homes. Needless to say, the smell can start to get a little stale. And perhaps it's gotten to the point where even an opened window won't help.
Well, there's a way to solve this problem. Get yourself a laundry dryer sheet and place it in front of your heater or air-conditioner. You don't need too much after that. All you have to do is enjoy the smell of fresh laundry in your home.
Ultimate cookie dip
Ah yes, dipping your oreo into milk. It seems so innocent, so simple, and yet, it can be such a stressful task. For most people, they assume their cookie will be safe after dipping it into milk, but in many cases, their cookie crumbles apart and falls in the milk, causing havoc and mayhem.
Get yourself a trusty fork and insert the fork into the filling. That's all you had to do to have yourself a reliable tool for dipping your cookie into a glass of milk. Dip your cookie safely into the milk, and know everything will be alright.
Everyone loves eating wraps. But no one enjoys having their wrap fall apart the minute they put it down on their plate. Well, that's your first mistake. Why are you eating your wrap off of a plate? What you should be doing is putting your wrap in a glass. Yes, that's right.
If you don't believe us, just look at the photo. In a glass, your wrap stays perfectly intact, and there's no need to worry about it coming undone or having to hold your wrap the entire time out of fear. It's time to fearlessly eat wraps.
With the current situation comes a bunch of DIY projects, which is a pretty great way to spend your time. The only thing is DIY projects are usually a lot of mess. And when you can't leave your house, you don't want your space to become a construction zone.
If you're planning on drilling, this Reddit user found the perfect solution to minimize mess while working. All you need is some tape and a piece of cardboard. Bam! You have yourself a dust collector; it's a pretty easy and effective idea.
Never guess which cereal is which
Though "guess this cereal" could be a great game to pass the time while we are stuck at home, most of the time, you just want to grab the cereal you want and pour some milk on it. Instead of keeping the clunky cereal boxes on top of your fridge, here's a better way to organized and identify your cereal.
After pouring the cereal plastic bins, cut the name of it out of the cereal box and place it inside the plastic container. Ta-da! You have yourself a cheap and easy cereal label.
Non-stick chicken wings
When we're indoors, the smallest of things can drive us insane. Let's take chicken wings, for example. They're delicious, but you know what's annoying? When they stick to the aluminum, ripping off all the crispiness and flavor. If you don't have any parchment paper, you know this all too well. It's an experience that no one should ever have.
But one Reddit user decided to put a stop to this madness and solve this serious issue. They crinkled the aluminum underneath the chicken wings, letting the wings rest on the peaks, preventing any of them from sticking.
Toilet paper bridge
Entertaining your kids while at home, isn't as easy as it may sound to people (they must be childless). There are only so many toys that can keep them entertained, so you need to upgrade the toys they have at home, making them more interesting.
If you have a train or car set, use toilet paper rolls to create and support a bridge. It'll make the set more dynamic and interesting for your kids. Well, at least we hope it'll grab their attention for at least a couple of more minutes.
Many people were told not to come into work without being fully prepared. All their equipment is at the office, and now they're left to create their own home offices. Some of the simplest of tools can make a huge difference. Take the mousepad, for example.
Without one, using your mouse can be a huge hassle and annoyance. But, if you have an eraser in your house, it looks like you have a mousepad to use. A simple solution that makes working at home so much easier.
Ice chest shopping cart
Did you leave your shopping bags at home? Don't' want to pay extra for plastic bags? You don't have to. If you have an ice chest lying around your garage, you don't need to wait to go camping to use it. Instead, you can make it your own personal shopping cart.
Wheel around with you at the grocery store, placing everything you need inside. The beauty is you don't need to touch any shopping carts that have been used by hundreds of people. Not only is it convenient, but it's also safe.
While we keep moving further away from nature, it looks like we find new ways of enjoying the great outdoors. Why have a traditional picnic when you can order some take-out and enjoy it while sitting on the trunk of your car?
You have to admit whether you like it or not; it does look pretty comfortable. I mean, it looks like she has a pretty good set up for a modern-day picnic. Next time you get McDonald's, give it a try!
Most people have a piano in their house, but let's be honest here, that piano sitting in your living room hardly gets used. So, why don't you switch things up and make your piano and an outdoor statue?
Fill the piano base with a bunch of flowers and let the water pour off the keys like a waterfall. It'll definitely add atmosphere to your backyard. And plus, if you have an old piano sitting around, this is a great way to make use of it.
Tea for the birds
Being a bird isn't easy. They spend most of the days hunting for food. Of course, bird lovers give them a helping hand and have bird feeders for them to enjoy a quick snack. Bird feeders can get quite pricey, but you already have a bird feeder in your kitchen.
Grab an old teapot and fill it with bird food before hanging it on a tree. Small birds will be able to sit on the rim or spout of the teapot and snack on some seeds.
Mirror, mirror on the wall
Mirror, mirror on the wall, who's the fairest tennis player of them all? If you have a vintage tennis racket or badminton racket, don't be so quick to throw it out or sell it at a garage sale. Instead, take a mirror and place it in the inside of the racket.
It'll give a vintage feel to your wall, and plus, you'll be able to take a quick peek of yourself when you walk by. So, dust off your old tennis racket and make your vintage mirror.
Maybe you have a ceiling you want to decorate or a backyard that is in need of something new. Well, you don't need to dish the dollars to make a space beautiful.
Instead, why don't you collect some old colanders, spray paint them to the colors of your choice, and use them as lamps on top of any light bulb? They'll make for an interesting wall piece and add some funk to your room. Funky!
When you have people over, you don't always want to have a bunch of different condiment containers on your table. But you don't need to do that. Instead, use a muffin tray to put a variety of different condiments inside each little muffin cup.
It'll keep things organized and clean, plus, you have twelve different spots for twelve different condiments! It's a great idea for a BBQ or a birthday party. It's a fun and easy idea.
You want to test your green thumb but don't want to buy a bunch of flower pots? Who said you had to? If you're a wine lover, save your corks! Use your old wine corks and use them to plant succulent plants.
You can place magnets behind them and stick them to your fridge. Not only do they make an amazing decoration, but you can also test out your green thumb without needing to buy hundreds of pots! Amazing idea.
Need more freezer space?
If there's one thing we all have problems with, it's that we never have enough fridge space. No matter how much we try to move things around, we never seem to make enough space for all our frozen foods.
So, why don't you try this out? Use office clips to hang your frozen food bags. It's similar to hanging up clothes. You'll be able to use so much more space and fit all your frozen foods in! It's a pretty good idea if you ask me!
We all need bookshelves in our house, but not all of us want to have a conventional white shelf from Ikea. So, what are your options? Of course, you have a ton of different objects to use as a bookshelf, but one great object to use is a ladder.
If the ladder is old and worn, it'll make the shelf look even more authentic and vintage. If you want to have something cleaner and fresh, then pick up a fresh ladder from the store!
Wine bottle lights
If you've been looking for funky lights, you know that they're not cheap. So, how can you save a couple of dollars in your bank account, while still making your style dreams come true? If you drink wine, save those bottles and use them to turn your kitchen lights into a funky chandelier.
It'll give a slight industrial feel to your space and make everything feel more streamlined. It's a cheap and creative way to make more out of your lights.
Secret money holder
This one is for the ladies. As a lady myself, I always have a couple of pads and tampons in my purse. But I never thought of using the wrapping of one of them as a secret money holder.
If someone manages to slip their hand into your bag, the last thing they'll want to steal is a pad. Instead, they'll look for your wallet. Keep your money and ids in this handy-dandy (not to mention cheap) secret holder.
When you're cooking in the kitchen and following a recipe, it can become a bit of a hassle. You don't want to keep opening the book with your hands if they're covered in food, so what are you going to do?
Instead, use a coat hanger to hold your book open. That way, you can easily view the recipe you need, without even needing to touch the book or hold it open. Just hang the coat hanger of a cupboard knob.
Many of us have an old ladder in our backyards that are necessarily that safest to use. But don't throw it away! You can use it as a bookshelf for your living room! You can keep it the way it is, or paint it a bright color to bring some zest into your room.
You can place some wood pieces on each step, so you have more space to place things on. With this hack, you can really make it your own.
Some of us have old pieces of luggage from our grandparents. And though we don't want to throw them away, we don't really know what to do with them either. So, what are your options?
Well, take them out of your attic and dust them off because you can actually use them to make a funky chair. Now, you may need someone to make it for you because reupholstering furniture is a lot harder than it looks. Believe me!
Lego key holder
If you're a lego fan or happen to have a bunch of lego in your closet (apparently, many people do), why don't you make use of it? Instead of leaving the lego in a box, you can use it to make functional pieces for your home, just like this key holder.
Keep all your keys organized and tidy on this key holder. What's even better is that you can customize it to the colors you like. Just don't step on any of them!
Cleaning out the Nutella jar
If there's one thing we can't handle looking at, it's an almost-empty Nutella jar going into the trash. We need to make sure every single bit of Nutella is fully used; that's the only way we can sleep at night.
So, take a scoop of ice cream and plop it into the jar. The ice cream will melt, and you'll be able to scrape off the last of the Nutella from the sides of the jar. It's a genius idea!
Wine glass holder
We all love a glass of wine, but not all of us have space in our cupboards for wine glasses. But you don't need much space, not if you're creative. Take a garden rake and hang it on the wall. Then slide the glasses in between the rakes.
Ta-da! Now you have a wine glass holder that doesn't take up much room. Not a bad idea, right? So, enjoy the wine and your new wine glass holder!
Homemade plant pot
If you have a small plant that needs some tender, love, and care but isn't ready for a larger pot, then you can make your own small planter pot. All you need is a toilet paper roll and a pair of scissors.
Cut the toilet paper roll in half, put some soil inside, and pot your plant! Cover the bottom with a piece of the toilet paper roll to keep the soil inside. And then you're done.
If you're a fan of the vintage look, and you happen to have an old bicycle sitting in your shed, then maybe you should think about this bathroom idea. It's a fun and creative way to make the most of your old bicycle.
All you need to do is place a piece of wood on top and secure the sink. And then, ta-da! You have your beautiful sink area ready for use. It's cute, right? Just make sure the tires are inflated!
Do you have an old boat in your backyard? What kind of question is that! Of course, you have an old boat in your yard, who doesn't? Well, if you're someone who likes a challenge, this is a great way to use up your old wooden boat.
Make a bed out of it! This is a great idea for kids or young adults who want something different for a bed, but still functional and comfy. It looks pretty cool, right?