We can all become set in our ways when it comes to how to best take care of our homes and keep them running. But sometimes a life hack comes along that makes you realize, “Oh, I could be saving so much time and energy if I just did this!”
On TikTok, there is a whole genre of this kind of advice captioned #LifeHack, #SummerHack and #TikTokTaughtMe. These videos are especially helpful because of the visual cues they give, as opposed to confusing or complicated text instructions.
Here are some of the most innovative and helpful home hacks from TikTok that will save you time and headaches, and just might inspire you to overhaul your daily routine.
1. How to move your plants into a bigger pot
If you have ever wondered how to re-pot your growing plants without turning them upside down and getting dirt everywhere, this hack is for you.
In this video, TikToker @sidneyraz places his cactus pot inside a bigger pot he plans to transfer it to and adds dirt all around it. He instructs his viewers to wet their dirt if it’s dry to create a mold. Then he lifts his “angry spiky buddy” in its old pot out of the mold, so that he can transfer it back, pot-less, into a hole that’s the perfect shape to receive it for replanting.
2. How to make a stunning DIY bouquet with just grocery store flowers and some ‘tic-tac-tape’
Although this hack is aimed at “fellas,” TikTok florist Jason Jin gave universal advice about how to arrange a bouquet using everyday flowers you can buy in a grocery store.
His tips are to:
1. Choose closed flowers because they will last longer.
2. Remove any thorns, bruised petals and most of the excess leaves. Hack off the ends of each flower.
3. Make a tic-tac-toe shape across your vase or vessel with strips of tape so that your flowers will stand up.
3. How to find your best light for photos outside
If you have ever wondered which angle is best for outside photos, TikToker Rachel Levin shared a tip she learned in film school.
“Hold your hand out in front of you and rotate it until you find the least amount of shadows. Take your photo from that angle,” Levin said in her TikTok.
4. How to make you cooler stay cold longer
Before you take your hard cooler out for an adventure, “Let some ice sit in the cooler for at least 24 hours! It will make your ice LAST SO MUCH longer and not melt as fast if the cooler is already cold!” TikToker @Anna_Truth explained.
Real-life testers back up how effective this hack is. When AllRecipes tested this for themselves, they found that the 24-hour pre-chilling process made the ice in hard coolers last between eight and 22 hours more than ice in coolers that did not get this extra prep. Although, pre-chilling wasn’t as effective with soft cooler bags.
5. How to make a stay-cold party tray with your freezer
If you are entertaining a crowd with food that needs to stay cool, TikToker @Joywhodat has a way to keep your aluminum serving trays icy cool.
In the video, Joywhodat places a big aluminum tray in the freezer and partially fills it with water. Then she adds two smaller trays inside the large one. ″You’re going to add water to the pan until your smaller pans start to float,” she said.
At that point, she weighs down the smaller pans, which forces the water to rise and freeze around the smaller pans, leaving them in a case of ice.
Using this method will allow your party food in the trays to stay cold “for most of the day, if not all of it,” the TikToker says.
6. How to take advantage of your camping chair’s key feature
In this TikTok video by Bo Johnson, no words are needed to show that there is a hole at the bottom leg of a typical camping chair that is meant for umbrellas. All you need to do is fit your umbrella between the armrest and the chair leg.
It’s a simple but effective feature that a lot of people were surprised to find out about, based on the 867,000 likes this video received.
As one commenter put it, “This app, I swear it just shows me how oblivious I am to the most simple things in the world.”
7. How to microwave your food so it’s evenly reheated
If your microwaved food is still cold in one area but mouth-burningly hot in others, you might just be putting your food in the microwave all wrong. The trick, according to one TikToker, is to not place food in the center of the microwave.
“It should be on the edge so it can actually rotate around and cook evenly,” explained TikToker @Onlyjayus, also recommending that people add a bit of water in a cup to go in the microwave if they are reheating pasta or pizza to keep it moist.
8. How to pour out and dispose of grease with tinfoil
Pouring grease straight down the drain can lead to clogs, so it’s important to dispose of it correctly. If you don’t have a container in which to put your leftover cooking oil, you can fashion one out of tinfoil, according to this hack.
To do so, put tinfoil over your kitchen sink drain and pour the grease into that. “Once it hardens, just throw away! Easy mess free clean up,” explained TikToker Paige.
9. How to get wax out of a jar candle and repurpose it
If you have little wax left in your candle, you can repurpose the candle jar and get the wax out easily by putting the candle in the freezer, as Zara Tayy demonstrates in a TikTok.
She freezes the candles until there are cracks in the wax, then takes the candles out and turns them upside down on a towel, thumping them so the wax comes out. Other TikTokers also suggest using a butter knife or paint can opener to pop out the cold wax discs.
Then, Tayy soaks and scrubs the candle jars in soapy water so the sticker comes off and the jar can be reused to store knickknacks.
10. How to dust ceiling fans without grime falling down
Janitor Brandon Pleshek, who goes by Clean That Up on TikTok, shared that you can clean a ceiling fan blade efficiently by surrounding the blade with a pillowcase and pulling the pillowcase tight.
“Pull back slowly, ensuring all the dust stays inside,” Pleshek says in his video.
11. How to quickly clean your shower
Housekeeper Vanessa Amaro shared her tip for making a clean shower part of your weekly routine. In her TikTok, she recommended filling a dish wand with dish soap and cleaning vinegar. “Ratio: 1/3 vinegar, 2/3 Dawn,” she gave as her preferred mix in a comment.
Then put that dish wand somewhere in your shower. “Once a week, when you’re putting that hair mask on, take your little brush and wash your shower while showering, ” Amaro said in her video. “If you are going to follow any of my tips, please let it be this one.”
12. How to peel off labels and price tags in one piece
Many of us are at war with the stickers stuck on our containers. You can try blow-drying and then peeling them off, as some TikToks recommend, but Lexie Byers has a no-heat method she learned from her mom that just requires a bit of tape.
In her TikTok, Byers demonstrates by putting a piece of tape on the bottom of a barcode sticker she is trying to get off a tumbler. “Stick half of it onto the tag and rub it so it is really on there. Make sure to leave a bit of a tail,” she said. “Then you wax it off.”
One commenter wrote: “You’ve probably saved billions in lost time.”
13. How to quickly plan a stress-free vacation with an online map
Many of us book a hotel before planning exactly what we’re going to do on a vacation, but as this vacation hack shows, we may have it all wrong.
Jessica, who goes by Jessicawantsanap on TikTok, shared she uses Google’s My Maps to plan her vacations more efficiently.
Before she books a hotel or Airbnb in the city she wants to vacation in, she uses Google My Maps to pin down the location of everything she wants to see, eat, and do, based on recommendations she has gotten. She then organizes them into groups like “attractions” and “activities.”
“Once you have your food and activities pinned, do a quick Google search of where the best-recommended areas to stay are and then compare that to your map,” she said on her TikTok. “And now you know where the best place for you to stay is based on what you want to do.”
She shared examples of maps she has made for Italy and Honolulu with her followers.
“The way I’ve spent hours Googling every address to see how close/far… away from the hotel or attractions,” one grateful commenter wrote. “THANK YOU.”