They’re good for more than just seasoning your food – here’s how to get extra value out of spices, from turmeric and cinnamon to cloves and nutmeg.
1. Mix your own paints
Mix a pinch of spice with white paint to create a new colour or if you’ve run out of paints, add a little spice with a splash of warm water in a painter’s palette (less water means stronger colours) to create your own. Try turmeric for warm yellow, paprika for bright orange or ground cinnamon for earthy brown.
2. Fix a radiator
Fix a dripping radiator by pouring in a few tablespoons of black pepper. The spices help to seal little holes that could be causing your leak.
3. Make scented candles
Fill your home with spicy aromas with a homemade cinnamon candle. Melt some wax, mix it with a tablespoon of ground cinnamon, ginger and nutmeg, and then pour into a glass with a wick in the centre. Only use ground varieties, as whole spices are a fire hazard.
4. Deter bugs naturally
Pesky moths and flies hate the smell of pepper, lavender, oregano, sage and rosemary, so scattering sprigs around your home will keep them away.
Potted herbs are even better – leave them on a windowsill and keep insects outside, or watch our video below on how to make a citronella candle to keep bugs at bay.
5. Deodorise your home
Mask and neutralise nasty smells with aromatic whole spices like cinnamon, cloves and star anise in small fabric bags.
Or make your own pot pourri by mixing spices with fruits: try dried lemon peel with ginger and thyme or dried orange with cinnamon and star anise.
6. DIY cold and flu remedies
Nutmeg and turmeric have awesome anti-inflammatory properties, which make them great for easing upset tummies. Mix with a drizzle of honey and some hot water as a natural remedy for a cold or flu
7. Brighten up your laundry
A simple method to keep your colours vibrant: just add a teaspoon of black pepper to your colour wash to stop the clothes fading.