Pimples, flowers, and crystals: Awesome non-medical uses for aspirin

Updated Mar 20 2017
Guest post by Dootsie Bug

51nVUv1-wpL._SY355_Aspirin is something of a wonder drug. Aside from stopping headaches, fever, pain and possibly having the potential to stop heart attacks and strokes, aspirin has a lot of topical and day-to-day uses that you may not know about. Aspirin, or acetylsalicylic acid, has some pretty cool properties that make it useful outside of the medical realm…

A lot of the applications below ask you to crush the aspirin. I find it's easiest to either use the back of a spoon in a rocking motion or a mortar and pestle.

Stain removal:

A few stains, including armpit stains, will come clean with the application of a paste of crushed aspirin and water. Apply the paste and let sit until dry, then launder as usual.

Pimple spot treatment:

Apply a dot of aspirin and water paste to a pimple and let sit until dry. Then wash the whole area with mild soap and warm water.

Calluses:

Make a paste of aspirin and lemon juice. Rub into the spot and wrap with a warm, moist towel. Relax for twenty minutes, then use a pumice stone on the area. This is great for tough heels.

Warts:

The chemical bonds in aspirin break down in moisture, resulting in salicylic acid — the stuff everybody applies to warts to burn them off. Wash the area with warm water and antibacterial soap. Wet an aspirin and press it to the wart. Cover with duct tape and leave overnight. This can be a bit irritating to the skin surrounding the wart, so you may want to cover it when possible.

Gardening:

Some gardeners swear that they see improvement in their plants when watered rarely with one aspirin dissolved in a quart of water. I've heard people claim that tomatoes will produce earlier and more, but with smaller tomatoes.

Cut flowers:

Adding half an aspirin to the (room temperature — not cold!) water in a vase may help the flowers stay fresh longer.

De-chlorinate your hair:

If your hair goes green when you've been swimming in a pool, crush five aspirin and stir into a glass of water. Use a spray bottle to spray your dry hair. Leave for 10 minutes, then shampoo as normal.

Crystals!:

Drop a couple of aspirins into a glass of water. After a week, drop in another. Every few days thereafter, add another to the mixture. It'll form crystals eventually. For science!

    • Now that's interesting!
      I really feel like we haven't fully explored what some of our most basic resources can do. I was trying to find scientific sources for some of these ideas and there just wasn't any professional literature.
      And it makes sense–I mean, who wants to fund research of something like aspirin–but it seems like there's more learning left to be done. For science!

  1. As a heads up though, if you're asthmatic and/or on asthma medicine, use really strong caution when handling aspirin or any other NSAIDs. They can cause a pretty bad reaction. Not too fun. >.<

    Fun fact: aspirin started out as willow bark. If you want to try an all natural version of aspirin, then pick up a willow bark herbal supplement at your local health store.

    • Totally–aspirin isn't safe for everyone! There are a lot of conditions that react badly to aspirin. It's a really prevalent and common OTC, but that doesn't mean it's 100% safe.
      Always use your knowledges. And consult a physician. ­čśë

  2. Thanks for this! I'd heard of a few of these, but not the one about plants–I'll have to try this! I wish I'd known about the de-chlorinate hair one when I was in middle school–a fair-haired girl I knew spent most of the fall semester with green hair after a summer of frequent swims.

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