How to Clean (Almost) Your Whole House With Vodka

You may have outgrown your days of cheap shots, but this humble grain alcohol is still here to serve you.

July 29, 2019

Housekeeping probably isn’t the first thing that comes to mind when you look at a bottle of vodka — for me, it's Bloody Marys, vodka sauce, and vodka martinis, in no particular order.

But let’s say you’ve been there, done that, and still got plenty of vodka to go around—what’s next? In fact, there are so many different ways to use up your (cheap) vodka, you may find more reasons to stock up.

For starters, why think of vodka as a cleaning agent? Similar to vinegar, vodka is a cheap multitasker that allows you to avoid the harsher chemical cleaners that are particular unsavory in the kitchen. However, unlike vinegar, vodka evaporates much more quickly and leaves no smell behind. Below, a few ways to utilize vodka at home that will give you a new appreciation for that plastic bottle of Smirnoff in the pantry.

In the Kitchen

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Top Comment:
“When I buy my giant bottle of vodka, I am always careful to explain what it is for, not that I have a problem buying liquor, but because I think this formula is wonderful. I'm going to be using a lot more vodka. Thanks!”
— KSBTips

Put some vodka in a spray bottle and go to town on whatever grime and grease stains are in your kitchen, whether that’s the stovetop (make absolutely certain your stove is off!), countertops, oven, or fridge. It’s important to note that, at 40 percent ABV, vodka is not a true disinfectant—you need an ABV of at least 50 percent to kill bacteria, and at least 80 percent to take on viruses.

In the Laundry Room (and Bedroom)

Add between a third of a cup to half a cup of vodka to your laundry before running the cycle to tackle clothes and towels that have become musty or mildew-y. To neutralize strong odors such as cigarette smoke and sweat, spray clothes, your gym bag, or even your mattress in the summer, with straight vodka—be sure to let the vodka dry off completely! What’s more, you can also use pure vodka as a solvent to remove stains from red wine, grass, even vomit from your clothing and carpets. Start by spraying vodka over the affected area, let it rest for 10 minutes, and then rinse or blot with cold water. Repeat until your stains are gone.

In the Bathroom

Not to sound like an infomercial, but soap scum and hard water stains are no match for vodka, which cuts right through buildup after a quick spray. Use that spray bottle for streak-free mirrors and glass surfaces, and if you don’t mind literally pouring booze down the drain, throw half a cup in your toilet once a month to prevent rings from forming.


Almost down to the last drops? To get those unsightly stickers and labels off your carefully curated home goods, spray some vodka directly on them, and wipe off the whole thing with a rag or cotton ball. You won’t have any sticky residue leftover.

Finally, the word from Sotheby’s is that you can use pure vodka as a solvent to bring the shine back to your fine jewelry, including diamonds—just let your rings and things soak in it for a few hours. Just make sure that particular shot glass stays out of a thirsty person’s reach!

Do you have other household uses for that 3-liter bottle of vodka in your pantry? Let us know in the comments below!

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Karen Lo

Written by: Karen Lo

lunch lady


KSBTips August 1, 2019
whoops, didn't finish...
I mix about 2/3 vodka to 1/3 distilled water and add several drops of lavender or lemon essential oil until it smells good to me.
When I buy my giant bottle of vodka, I am always careful to explain what it is for, not that I have a problem buying liquor, but because I think this formula is wonderful.
I'm going to be using a lot more vodka. Thanks!
KSBTips August 1, 2019
I'm delighted by this article! Who knew? Not me! But I have been using POTATO vodka as spray starch for a couple of years. Vodka makes the best starch!
The iron slides on it, it gives cottons a great "finish" and never leaves a residue or spots. And you can put it in your own, re-useable spray bottle. I mix
Ewkalina August 1, 2019
Go to cvs and buy rubbinv alc9hol...literally samef, stufv wuthout the orice. Buying vodka 7s wrll...stupid
Ewkalina August 1, 2019
Sorry, cant edit on this thread...neurapathy is a bitch...get rubbing alcohol and stop with the vodka. Spend your money eksewhers instead of this nonsense
Ewkalina July 29, 2019
Seriously, the stupidest thing i have read in a long Yeah, sure buy that instead of rubbing alcohol. Even cheap vidka csn be recycled into a mixed drink. How about posting a great recipe instead of nonsense which really, no one would ever do...