Though I’m not a big soda drinker, I usually stock up on Coca-Cola because a lot of our guests can’t seem to get enough of it. Usually, this means I have a partially-used bottle or two waiting to go stale. It never goes unused at my house, though, because it turns out that Coke can be used for a lot more than just drinking. This soda leads multiple lives! Here are seven unconventional ways to use Coca-Cola:

 

1. Marinade

Coke can add a rich, sweet flavor to your meat. Try out this chicken marinade recipe. I substituted chicken thighs for the breasts because that’s what we tend to have on hand, but it turned out very well. It can be tough to get my children to eat meat, but they loved this!

2. Hair de-frizzer

I read that Coke will curl your hair if you pour it on and let it sit for a few minutes before rinsing. While it didn’t exactly curl my hair, it did significantly cut down on the frizz. I washed and conditioned my hair as usual, then poured flat Coke over it and let it sit for about three minutes. Then I rinsed it, combed it and let it air dry. I was extremely surprised to see that my hair didn’t frizz up (think Gilda Radner on Saturday Night Live) but actually stayed mostly smooth and behaved itself!

3. Blood stain remover

I dabbed Coke on a small blood stain on my daughter’s shirt and let it sit for 10 minutes before washing. While it didn’t completely remove the stain, the carbonic acid in the Coke did a pretty good job at breaking down the blood.

4. Toilet cleaner

Again, I was surprised that this worked. I poured some Coke into our toilet, which is stained from hard water. I let it sit overnight and scrubbed it in the morning. It didn’t completely get rid of the stain, but it definitely brightened up the toilet and removed the lighter-stained areas.

5. Window cleaner

I know what you’re thinking…Coke to clean windows? But believe it or not, this works because of the citric acid present in the cola. In fact, it worked just as well as any glass cleaner, and when I was done, I didn’t notice any sticky residue on the windows!

6. Chrome cleaner

Chrome spots easily, and I’m never really sure what to clean it with. I poured a bit of soda onto a paper towel and wiped down all of the chrome in the kitchen. It worked well to remove the fingerprints and water spots, while also making the chrome shine.

7. Science experiment

This one is sure to have children excited. When you drop a pack’s worth of Mentos into a brand new bottle of Diet Coke, the soda will shoot out like a volcano, or more like a rocket if done perfectly. There aren’t any clear explanations of why this happens, but when the MythBusters on the Discovery Channel tested it out, they determined that the explosion is thanks to the gum arabic and gelatin in the Mentos combined with the caffeine, potassium benzoate and aspartame in the soda. Note: Be sure to wear eye protection and take appropriate safety precautions when attempting this experiment.

The next time you run out of your favorite cleaning product or the kids are bored, turn to that bottle of Coke sitting in your pantry. At this point, I’m wondering if there’s anything Coca-Cola can’t do!

This is a guest post by Nancy
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