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5 Great Uses for Tea (that don't involve drinking it)

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Tea is really a wonderful thing, isn't it? As well as reducing your risk of heart attack, delivering your body a hefty dose of antioxidants, and providing a healthy alternative to sugary, milky, bloat-inducing lattes (and whatever's passing for coffee in the office kitchen these days) it also has a number of potential uses around the home. Read on to see how you can put that dusty earl grey in the back of your pantry to good use...

1) De-puffing Tired Eyes

We've all been there. Maybe you under-slept, maybe you over-indulged in alcohol or salty foods, maybe it's just your luck, but whatever the reason, you've woken up looking like two airbags have gone off under your eyes, and it aint pretty. Before climbing back under the covers, or dropping a bundle on expensive eye creams with unpronounceable ingredients, why not give teabags a go? Standard black tea contains caffeine, which can help to shrink the blood vessels immediately below your skin. This constricting effect reduces the visibility of dark circles, and helps reduce puffiness.

2) Topical Acne Treatment

Green tea contains potent anti-bacterial agents, known as catechins. These work topically to suppress the bacteria that cause acne, and to regulate hormonal imbalances. Furthermore green tea's anti-inflammatory properties mean that damaged skin is able to better heal, and create less scarring as it does. Green tea also has potent acne fighting attributes when taken internally, so a two-pronged approach here may be the best one.

3) Mouthwash

When an adult or child has a sore tooth, mix warm (not boiling) mint herbal tea with a teaspoon of salt in place of a plain old salt gargle. The mint is soothing and cooling to irritated teeth and gums. For the non-dentally troubled, many homemade mouthwash recipes make use of this delicious and refreshing herb to create a natural, at home daily mouthwash. 

4) Soothe Razor Burn

The tannic acid found in black tea is highly effective at reducing the redness and inflammation that some people can experience after shaving, and when hair starts to grow back and bumps are formed. Unlike harsh astringents, it wont hurt or sting to apply a tea bag to your face or other affected area after damage has been done during shaving. Of course the best cure in this case is prevention, so make sure your razors are sharp and your skin thoroughly exfoliated before attempting to shave any part of your body.

5)  Fertilizer

This one does involve drinking the tea...sort of. Once you have enjoyed a cup of tea, instead of throwing your tea bags out, put them in the garden! You will need to check out what the actual tea bags are made of in your favourite tea brand, but at the very least the contents will be biodegradable, breaking down to create a nutritious fertiliser for your plants.

Is there any other tea uses that you would like to add? Let us know below!

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