13 Surprising Uses of Coffee 

Enjoy drinking coffee but always feel like you’re wasting the coffee grounds? Or maybe you drink coffee but always seem to have a surplus of coffee beans you don’t know what to do with? Or perhaps you’ve never been a coffee person but want to be a part of the coffee community and find other ways to experience the magic of coffee? Well, we have the perfect guide for you! 

We researched the many surprising benefits of coffee and recommended creative ways to make the most of your coffee grounds and beans and level up your whole life from skincare to haircare to home cleaning to gardening to art and more! 

Coffee: the Secret Beauty Ingredient 

Looking for ways to shake up your beauty routine? Coffee is not just a superfood for consumption but for application as well. Here’s how you can use coffee for better skin and hair. 

Skin exfoliant. Looking for a free, all natural facial scrub? Coffee grounds get the job done! You can reuse your coffee grounds as a scrub to remove dead skin cells and quickly brighten your skin. To make your DIY exfoliant, mix a half cup of coffee grounds with a half cup of brown sugar. Add a half cup of coconut oil if you’re looking for some more moisture. Mix well and voila - it’s ready to use!

Body scrub. Is regular soap getting too boring for you? Great news - exfoliants aren’t just for the face but can be a part of your shower routine as well. Use your scrub every few days to smooth and polish dry or rough skin. 

Hair scrub. That’s right, coffee ground exfoliators aren’t just great for skin but also your scalp and hair. Coffee helps to rebalance the pH and scrub away dead skin cells. It also makes for a nice, soothing head massage! 

Eye cream. Exfoliating isn’t coffee’s only beauty superpower. Beyond making you feel less tired, coffee can also help you look less tired. Caffeine stimulates the skin and improves blood flow to the face, which helps you look more radiant (no matter how much sleep you actually got!). Moreover, coffee stimulates collagen production, which helps your skin lock in moisture and minimize fine lines. Look for eye creams with coffee as an ingredient or make your own by mixing half an ounce of coffee infused oil, 0.25 ounce of jojoba oil, 0.25 ounce of rosehip oil, and 0.75 ounce of shea butter. 

Coffee: the Home Renovator 

Beyond beauty, coffee has some excellent practical benefits, helping you solve all your most pressing and head scratching problems at home. 

Dish cleaner. Have hard to clean dishes? Dish soap won’t do the trick? Turn your coffee grounds into a dish scrub to make your dishes look just like new! Mix a half teaspoon of coffee with warm water, apply the combination to a sponge or brush, and start scrubbing. Your dishes will be clean in no time. 

Odor remover. Want to do away with the garbage stench in the kitchen? You can use coffee grounds or beans to absorb the bad scent. Put a bowl of coffee beans or coffee grounds beneath your garbage bag, and you’ll quickly get rid of any bad odors. 

You can also use coffee to deodorize drains. Just mix coffee grounds with warm water, and you have a drain deodorizer (but make sure your coffee grounds are fine enough to not accidentally clog your drain!). 

Air freshener. Love the smell of fresh coffee? You can make your own coffee scented air freshener to make your home feel like a cozy coffee shop. Mix a half cup of coffee beans or coffee grounds with 2 tablespoons of molasses, cinnamon (preferably in stick form), and water. 

Furniture fixer. Did your cat scratch your table? Or maybe you recently moved and your favorite dresser was scratched in the process? Coffee is your best friend! Steep coffee grounds (however much you need, depending on the size of the scratch) in water and use a Q tip to apply the mixture to the scratched furniture. 

Sanding icy paths. Live in a place where it snows? Afraid of slipping on your driveway or walkway? Don’t have salt or don’t want to buy salt in bulk? Coffee can do the job! Pour your coffee grounds over the icy areas, and it will gradually melt the ice, making it safer to walk and drive. 

Meat softener. Coffee is an excellent yet underused cooking ingredient. If you’re making meat that you want to tenderize, coffee can help. Brew a pot of coffee, let it cool, and soak your meat in the coffee for up to a day before cooking. Not only will the meat be softer and juicier, it will also have great flavor! 

Coffee: the Outdoor Companion 

Coffee’s benefits don’t end in the home itself but extend to the garden and backyard as well. 

Fertilizer. Whether you’re growing plants purely for aesthetics or growing some of your own food, coffee is a garden miracle working! Coffee grounds are an all natural yet powerful source of fertilizer. Just take your coffee grounds and sprinkle them thinly onto your garden soil or add them to your compost (yes, coffee is compostable - it contains nitrogen rich organic material!). 

Bug repellent. Are there simply too many mosquitoes for you to host a barbecue or get together in your backyard? Coffee comes to the rescue. Burn your dry coffee grounds as a DIY insect repellent to stave off bugs and mosquitoes. 

You can also use coffee grounds as a snail or pest repellent in your garden. Sprinkle coffee grounds wherever you don’t want pests to tread. Slugs and snails, for example, dislike the smell of coffee, so they generally stay away from coffee grounds. 

Coffee: the Art Project

Tired of baking endless bread during quarantine? Looking for more creative outlets? Have young children at home you’re trying to entertain during spring break? Want to make a thoughtful, homemade gift for a friend’s birthday? Coffee is perfect for arts and crafts. 

Dye. For fun or even practical purposes, you can use a cup of brewed coffee to dye clothes. To make a fun pattern, you can tie dye. To darken faded black clothing, you can toss a few cups of coffee in with the laundry. 

Paint. Add a bit of coffee and add approximately twice as much water. Stir, and you’re ready to use the mixture as paint for your next art project. For dark tones, add more coffee. For lighter tones, add more water. 

We hope this guide has helped you rethink the possibilities with coffee! Have other ideas for creative ways to make the most of your coffee? Let us know - we would love to hear from you!