16 wonderful uses for garlic that will take you by surprise

16 wonderful uses for garlic that will take you by surprise

Garlic is pretty marvellous - it's used around the world as the base for many delicious recipes. Did you know that's it's also rather good for you? I've put together a list of 16 wonderful uses for garlic that may just take you by surprise.

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Using garlic in health & beauty...

1. Make yourself a home cough remedy

Garlic - make yourself a home cough remedy
Grab your mug!

Boil up some minced cloves of garlic and drink it like tea! You'll find it easier to breathe and the itchiness of your throat will subside. Goodbye cruel cough, be gone with you.

2. Combat acne

In a similar way to a cold sore, you can treat acne by rubbing half a clove onto the problematic area. Garlic has anti-inflammatory properties to reduce irritation, and the allicin will kill bacteria that clogs up your pores and causes breakouts. Next time you're suffering, reach for your trusty garlic.

3. Treat athlete's foot

By now, we are definitely aware that garlic is pretty great, but did you know you can use it to treat athlete's foot? Mix some olive oil and minced garlic together, and using a cotton bud, apply it to the affected area. Keep applying this treatment for a while after the symptoms have gone, in order to make sure it's truly ended.

4. Use raw garlic to remove splinters

Slice a garlic clove in half and tape it to the area where the splinter is with a bandage. Apparently, this will help to remove the splinter - due to the antibacterial properties. Who knew?

5. Promote hair growth

Promote hair growth with garlic
Wow - ultimate hair growth! Photo credit: Judy **

If you want hair growth then check out Anushka's How to make your hair grow faster than ever - 1 inch in a week! You can also use garlic to promote hair growth - try adding garlic into your shampoo and use it on your hair. If you fancy, you can buy garlic infusion oil which you can massage into your hair.

6. Look after your toe nails

Have your toe nails turned an unfortunate shade of yellow or brown? Grab a cotton bud, and using garlic oil coat, your nails. Hopefully, your nails should be back to their normal colour within a week. Hurrah!

7. Use garlic as a dandruff treatment

I've found a very interesting page all about using garlic as a dandruff treatment. Are you suffering? Reach for the garlic and using honey you can make a remedy at home. Follow the instructions from Heal With Food. I'll certainly be checking out the rest of this website, it looks very interesting.

8. Attend to a cold sore

Cut a clove of garlic into two pieces. Using one piece hold it against your cold sore. As you can probably (and correctly) imagine, this may hurt a little - but it has a strong antiseptic and antimicrobial properties to help heal your annoying cold sore.

Using garlic in & around the home...

9. Repel mosquitos

Repel mosquitos with garlic
OW. Photo credit: Malte Ahrens

I love holidays (who doesn't?), but sometimes I find myself a target of a swarm of mosquitos who decide they'd quite like to bite my legs over and over again. Some believe that garlic can help combat the little beasts, so I think it's worth a go. So how do you use garlic to scare them away? Grab an unpeeled clove and rub it all over your skin. The mozzies will hate the stench and keep away from you... as might all your friends too.

10. Make garlic glue

If you've very finely chopped garlic you'll be aware of how sticky it can be - and how difficult it is to get it off your fingers! Got an envelope that is not longer sticky? Grab a garlic clove, crush it and then rub the juices onto your envelope. Hey presto - the envelope will stick.

11. Roast for garlic mashed potatoes

Improve your ordinary mashed potatoes by adding roasted garlic to them. If this is something you haven't tried before then it's worth a go - it's so tasty! Here's an easy recipe for you to try from Martha Stewart.

12. Use garlic as a de-icer

Garlic as a de-icer
Grab the garlic!

Garlic salt as a de-icer? Who would have thought it? In 2008, the Des Moines suburb of Ankeny used garlic salt to get rid of the ice on the roads. What an interesting use for garlic!

13. Learn how to make garlic fish bait

My brother is heavily into fishing so I'll be letting him know about this tip. Off on a fishing trip? Make your own bait with (among other interesting ingredients), raw garlic and garlic powder. Trails have listed 5 easy steps to your very own garlic fish bait. Delicious! I hope you catch something great...

14. Make a pesticide mix for your garden

If you're having trouble with pesky pests in your garden, then here's a natural way for you to deter bugs and insects - using garlic! Follow the lovely instructions in a hand video from the Allotment Diary. Enjoy folks, unlucky pests.

15. DIY surface cleaner

Here's an interesting tip for your garlic - make a surface cleaner! Chop up 3-4 cloves of garlic, toss them in a spray bottle and pour in some white wine vinegar. Add some lemon oil to make it smell lovely and then use as a disinfectant spray - easy!

16. Make garlic chocolate truffles

chocolate garlic truffles

I'm very intrigued by this - as a lover of chocolate and a lover of garlic, this can only be delicious... right?! If you fancy trying your hand at this then visit Baking Barrister for the recipe.

Garlic fans, I hope you've enjoyed this post! If you've got any more uses, let us know in the comments below...


Colleen B


Lifelong biscuit addict. Obsessed with recipes, cooking & eating. Slightly lazier than the average bear, so likes writing about life hacks & discovering the quickest / easiest way to do things.

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  1. Author Debbie on September 5, 2016 at 9:06 am

    The garlic tips opened my eyes, it is a wonder in disguise, and (it's the truth, not just to rhyme) I have a dreadful cold, which time doesn't seem to want to cure, will I wheeze forever more? Now I know what I can do, suck some garlic, if it's true, one thing at least, I have reflected, others won't end up infected, they won't want to catch their death breathing in my garlic breath!

    1. Author Colleen B on September 7, 2016 at 11:59 am

      Debbie, I hope your cold goes away With the garlic tips you learned today We love your poems, they make our days bright So please keep posting them onto our site!

    2. Author Leila Rose-Gordon on March 15, 2017 at 1:43 pm

      Wow, I love the tips They're out of sight! I'll share them too And help a few... Debbie and Colleen What can I say My fellow poets You made my day!

    3. Author Colleen B on March 16, 2017 at 2:48 pm

      Thank you for your comment L.R.G. It's poems like these that I LOVE to see... I hope you enjoyed my garlic tips too, (and this poem, just for you!).

  2. Author KENNETH CATTLE on October 20, 2017 at 10:14 am

    Extra virgin olive oil and garlic makes a very good breakfast dip, which is very healthy! Vampires love it too!

    1. Author Stephanie C on October 23, 2017 at 5:23 pm

      Hi Kenneth. This sounds like a very interesting breakfast combination I must say! Thanks for sharing :)

  3. Author sandra jones on October 20, 2017 at 12:28 pm

    I read that you can also use garlic to get rid of moles on face. put crushed garlic on it and leave for about 3 hours, keep using every day until mole has gone. Maybe best to check with doctor first though, as could be dangerous being a mole.

    1. Author Stephanie C on October 23, 2017 at 12:58 pm

      Hi Sandra. This is a very interesting idea! I don't have any facial moles but would be interesting to try for those who do :)

  4. Author Ranjit Bains on October 21, 2017 at 12:15 pm

    I love garlic it is good for diabetes.

    1. Author Stephanie C on October 23, 2017 at 5:22 pm

      Hi Ranjit. We love it too, and now there are even more reasons to eat it! :)


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