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Image for article titled The Weirdest Ways You Never Knew You Could Reuse Your Banana Peels

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The jury’s still out on the “right” way to eat a banana, but there’s no denying that you’re wasting a banana peel if you just throw it in the trash. Banana peels have anti-inflammatory properties and antioxidants, but they can also be used around the house in some weird, creative ways. Just don’t bother putting banana peels in your garden soil—that’s somewhat nonsense.

Consider saving banana peels for any of these potential purposes:

Itch relief. According to Healthline, a banana peel is a viable option to use as for itch relief from sunburn, poison ivy, or bug bites. Simply press the white side of the banana peel against your skin, and you should begin feeling some temporary relief.

Removing a splinter. According to Dr. Steve Silvestro, the banana peel’s moisture is absorbed into the skin, making the tissue ever so slightly swollen, and pushing the splinter up and out. To do it, slice off a small section of the banana peel and place it skin-side up against the splinter. Then cover with a bandage and leave it on for a few hours. This should draw the splinter to the surface, making it much easier to remove.

Shining shoes. Turns out, banana peels are excellent at shining leather: They’re filled with potassium, which is one of the key ingredients in commercial shoe polish. To use a banana peel to shine your leather shoes, just take the inside of the peel and rub it over the leather, covering the entire surface. Then just use a dry cloth to rub it over and remove any excess banana residue.

Make tea. If you enjoy the taste of a banana, odds are you might enjoy a cup of banana peel tea. Banana peel tea is exactly what it sounds like: You boil a banana peel in water to make a banana-flavored tea. Over at Healthy Green Savvy, they recommend adding a sprinkle of nutmeg, cinnamon, or vanilla extract, as well as a bit of almond milk or coconut milk. Just don’t buy into the idea that banana tea will work as a sleep aid—there isn’t much evidence to back up that claim.

Make vinegar. You can make vinegar from banana peels, so long as you’re willing to wait for it. All you’ll need is a couple of pounds of banana peels, water, sugar, baker’s yeast, vinegar starter, a large pot, and two months of patience. If you have it in you to carry out this recipe, you can use your banana peel vinegar to top salads or make sauces.

 



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