Good to the Last Drop: How to Use It Up!

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Welcome to #ThrowbackThursday! Every Thursday we’ll be celebrating the wisdom of our foremothers with some themed tips from the Great Depression era. Feel free to get in on the fun! Write your own Throwback Thursday tips on our Facebook wall, or tweet @CatchyFreebies with the hashtag #ThrowbackThursday. If we choose your tip for a feature, we’ll send you a sample from our stash! 

This #ThrowbackThursday, we’re going back to the basics of Great Depression saving with the adage “Use it up, wear it out, make it do, or do without!” This slogan has been passed down as a tried-and-true method of making saving simple. Most of the phrase is fairly straightforward, but there’s a lot to unpack in “use it up” – there are so many ways to use up the last drop of all kinds of essentials, especially when it comes to beauty buys and jarred or canned foods. So, to make things a little easier, we’ll break it down into different types of products.

Ways to use up the last drop of beauty and skincare products:

  • Cut open that bottle of your favorite moisturizer, BB cream, foundation, shampoo, conditioner, or other liquid beauty buys to get the last bits out – there’s a lot of product hiding in the crevices!
  • Alternatively, to use up the last of your shampoo or conditioner, add a little water to the product and shake it up. You can even transfer the mixture to a spray bottle and use it that way – if you’re shaking up the last of your conditioner, you can use it as a detangler or leave-in conditioner spray for easy styling!
  • Get every last iota of pigment out of your lipstick tube by scooping it out (with a knife or the end of a makeup brush) and melt it down by holding it in a metal spoon over a low-burning stove top or a candle, then pour it into a clean, empty palette or flat gloss container. Then you can use it with a lip brush or with your finger for a sheer look!
  • To use up the last of your nail polish or mascara, add a few drops of saline solution or generic eyedrops, and carefully roll the bottle or container between your palms to mix it up – don’t shake or agitate!

Ways to use up the last drop of home essentials:

  • Getting to the end of your essential oil bottles? Take apart the pieces of the EO bottles and stick them in a large glass jar filled with epsom salts, then seal it tightly and gently roll the bottle in your hands. Let sit for a day or two, then open up your jar and remove the bottle pieces for super-easy bath salts or foot soak!
  • Scraping the bottom of your coconut oil jar? Use your fingers to get every last bit out, and swipe it on your skin for quick and easy body lotion!
  • Running low on hand soap? Add some warm or hot water to the bottle and shake it up to get every ounce out of there!
  • Laundry detergent running thin? Don’t toss that bottle just yet – either cut it open or screw the cap on really tight and leave the bottle upside down overnight to summon up the dregs from the bottom.
  • When it’s getting difficult to squeeze out your toothpaste, just cut off the end of the tube and you’ll be able to squeeze easily from the other end.

Ways to use up the last drop of food products:

  • Shake a little water in your tomato or cheese sauce jars to get the last remnants of saucy goodness off the sides and bottom of the bottle.
  • If you’ve got barbecue sauce, mayonnaise, citrus preserves, or dressing to use up, splash in a little vinegar to loosen up the dregs. Then you could use it as a marinade or spruce it up with some herbs and oil or lemon juice for an easy dressing or sauce.
  • Is the last bit of peanut butter just taunting you in the jar? Don’t crack open a new jar yet. Mix in some honey for a delicious fruit dip, or make some oatmeal right in the jar for an easy, pre-flavored breakfast or lunch.
  • Enjoy the last of your mustard by adding some horseradish and mayo for a yummy spread, or add honey and vinegar to make a frugal vinaigrette.
  • Finish off your honey jar by adding an equal amount of hot water to the bottle. Then shake it up to make a natural simple syrup that’s delicious in oatmeal, tea, coffee, or cocktails!
  • Got mushy, overripe fruit or veggies? Whip up some smoothies, juices, sauces, or dressings with that unsavory-looking produce – the taste of the finished product will still be great!
  • In addition to overripe fruits, you can also use the dregs of canned fruits or preserves to make homemade popsicles – even if you don’t have popsicle molds, you can use ice cube trays or small plastic or paper cups and toothpicks!
  • Don’t let those leftovers go bad! For inspiration, read up on ways to use leftover food in our September post on leftovers!

What’s your favorite way to use up the last drops? Leave us a comment on Facebook or send us your thoughts on Twitter @CatchyFreebies using the hashtag #ThrowbackThursday!


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