20 Clever Uses for Rubber Bands

Rubber bands are incredibly versatile—just look at a few of the things rubber bands can do!

What to Do with Rubber Bands

1. Keep clothes on hangers: Winding up rubber bands at the tips of your clothes hangers will keep slippery straps and fabrics from sliding off. (h/t Real Simple)

2. Help little fingers grip slippery glasses: Slip rubber bands around a drinking glass to help children get a better grip.

3. Open a bottle: Wrap a rubber band around a bottle top or can lid to help get a better grip for opening.

4. Keep an apple fresh: Keep a sliced apple from browning in your child's lunchbox by wrapping a rubber band around the slices so that the apple holds its shape.  

5. Decorate a pencil cup: Make a cute "striped" pencil holder cup for your desk by wrapping multicolored rubber bands around an old can or jar.

6. Organize desk clutter: Corral items like paper clips and buttons in empty jam jars, and fasten a piece of fabric around the lid with a rubber band.

7. Make a regular broom into a DIY Swiffer: Dust moldings and hard-to-reach high places by securing a cleaning cloth to a long-handled broom with a large rubber band. 

8. Make a wallet: Secure your ID, credit card, and cash with a rubber band for an instant "wallet."

9. Contain paint splatter: Wrap a rubber band around the mid-point of a paint container for a neat way to scrape excess paint off your brush as you paint.

10. Monitor ingredient levels: Keep track of flour, sugar, rice, paint, or grains inside an opaque container by keeping a rubber band secured around the outside, to indicate the level of whatever's inside.

11. Quiet a loud-slamming door: A rubber band stretched between the doorknobs so that it's wrapped around the closing point of a door can help soften the slam of a hard-closing door. (h/t Lifehacker

12. Save money on hand soap refills: Wrap a rubber band around the top of a pump bottle, so that the dispenser pump only goes down partway. Each pump will yield half as much soap—still plenty for getting hands clean—so you use less soap.

13. Make a cute centerpiece: Create a centerpiece or gift by wrapping a rubber band around a round candle, then sliding cinnamon sticks between the candle and the rubber band to completely surround the candle. Tie a pretty ribbon around the rubber band for a finishing touch. You can use the same method to wrap colorful pencils around a mason jar or vase for a fun teacher gift or birthday party centerpiece.

14. Keep your skirt under control: Riding your bike in a skirt? No problem. Treehugger has a cool video showing how you can use a penny and a rubber band to keep your skirt hem from flying up

15. Prop up a smartphone in the car: Thread a rubber band between the slats of your car's AC vent to prop your smartphone within view if you're using it for driving directions (and not to text and drive!).

16. Conserve toilet paper: If your pets (or your toddler) like to attack the tp roll just to see it unravel, keep a rubber band around the roll so that tempting loose end doesn't dangle.

17. Keep papers secure in your car: Secure parking garage tickets, fuel credit cards, and other important papers to your car visor with a rubber band—that way you can actually use your visor to protect your eyes from the sun, without worrying about papers flying loose while you’re driving.

18. Mark your page: Wind a rubber band around the last page you read in your book for an instant bookmark.

19. Work with a stripped screw: Press a rubber band into the head of a stripped screw to help give your screwdriver better traction. (h/t Bob Vila)

20. Childproof cabinet doors: Childproof kitchen cabinets by tightly winding rubber bands between kitchen knobs to secure them together.