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22 Amazing and Practical Uses for Hairspray

Cosmopolitan magazine has asserted that hairspray is the “must-have product that you aren’t using,” and I completely agree. The ’80s gave hairspray a bad name, but it’s a truly fantastic tool for styling. It comes in a variety of strengths, and newer formulations often include heat protection, shine, and/or UV filters to protect hair color. They are fantastic for setting hair in curls, creating volume with teasing, and there is no better product for locking out humidity.

If hairstyling isn’t enough, the polymers and solvents in hairspray make it a very versatile product. Don’t throw away that can you bought for your last special event! From cleaning to crafting, there are a ton of uses for this wonder product. Click through the slideshow for 22 truly interesting, super practical uses for hairspray — beyond hair.

Note: Hairspray is available in both non-aerosol (pump) and aerosol dispensers. Pump hairspray works well for projects that require a heavier, wetter dose of spray while aerosol dispenses a finer, drier mist that lends itself to coating items evenly. Today’s aerosol cans do not contain chloro-flourocarbons (CFCs) and do not affect the ozone layer so choosing a delivery method is personal preference.

  • 22 Amazing and Practical Uses for Hairspray 1 of 23
    22 Amazing and Practical Uses for Hairspray
  • Stain Remover 2 of 23
    01-Stain-on-shirt

    You may have heard of this one, but it really works. I'm convinced the combination of hairspray and Tide To Go will remove anything.

    Photo credit: Aaron Harmon (aaron13251)/Flickr

  • Bug Killer 3 of 23
    02-fly

    Hairspray is less toxic than chemical bug sprays but just as effective at stopping flies, mosquitoes, and even bees.

    Photo credit: Dan Foy (orangeacid)/Flickr

  • Wreath Preserver 4 of 23
    03-wreath

    Coat your next evergreen wreath with hairspray. The polymers help seal in moisture to help the greenery last longer.

    Photo credit: Tony Alter (tobyotter)/Flickr

  • Sidewalk Chalk Sealant 5 of 23
    04-sidewalkchalk

    When your kids create a masterpiece or hopscotch board, help it last longer and prevent smudging with a coat of hairspray. This also works for chalk lines used during home improvement.

  • Shoe Polish Extender 6 of 23
    05-shoepolish

    Spray a light coat onto shoes after polishing to set the color and help it last longer.

    Photo credit: Brett Wood (brettanicus)/Flickr

  • Index Card Protector 7 of 23
    06-recipecards

    Give index cards a couple coats of hairspray to make them spill proof. This works great for recipe cards.

    Photo credit: Liz West (Muffet)/Flickr

  • Cut Flower Life Extender 8 of 23
    07-flowers

    I'm not sure I'd dare try this, but I'm told that adding a light coat to the underside of cut flowers help them to last longer by sealing in moisture.

    Photo credit: Liz West (muffet)/Flickr

  • Rub On Transfer Creator 9 of 23
    08-rub-on-transfer

    Follow this tutorial to make your own rub-on transfers using hairspray. You can use the rub-on transfers for scrapbooking, cards, crafts, or for creating a cool design on your nails, like the one above found at Geez... 

  • Pet Fur Grabber 10 of 23
    09-dog-on-couch

    Spray hairspray onto a paper towel or rag, then run it over furniture or carpets to easily clean up stubborn pet fur.

    Photo credit: Nate Steiner/Flickr

  • Nail Polish Dryer 11 of 23
    10-nail-polish

    As this video shows, hold a can of aerosol hairspray a good distance away from nails and lightly coat each nail to help speed drying.

    Photo credit: Romina Campos (Berenice Decados)/Flickr

  • Run Stopper 12 of 23
    11-pantyhose

    We all know the clear nail polish trick for pantyhose runs, but hairspray will also do the trick. In fact, you can pre-treat pantyhose with a light coat of hairspray to strengthen fibers and prevent runs in the first place.

    Photo credit: Richard Masoner/Cyclelicous

  • Zipper Stiffener 13 of 23
    12-zipper

    Have a zipper that keeps falling down? Spray it with hairspray to harden the teeth and prevent wardrobe malfunctions. This trick also works on loose screw and hinges.

    Photo credit: Becky Stern (Bekathwia)/Flickr

  • Leaf Preserver 14 of 23
    13-leaves

    If you plan to go leaf hunting with your little ones this fall, spray your finds with hairspray to help preserve their color longer. This also works with dried or pressed flowers.

    Photo credit: mksfly/Flickr

  • Self Defense 15 of 23
    14-self-defense

    In a pinch, a shot of hairspray to the eyes of an attacker could buy you some time. Learn more at eHow.

    Photo credit: Quinn Dombrowski (quinn.anya)/Flickr

  • Newspaper Transformer 16 of 23
    15-newspaper

    I love to reuse newspapers as gift wrap. Spraying the sheets with a couple light coats of hairspray will strengthen the paper, make the colors pop, and seal the ink so it won't get all over your hands.

    Photo credit: Jon S (NS Newsflash)/Flickr

  • Curtain Protector 17 of 23
    16-curtains

    Spraying curtains with hairspray prior to hanging helps to ward off dust from clinging to the fabric and prevents wrinkles and creases.

    Photo credit: nibujohn/Morguefile

  • Label Remover 18 of 23
    17-jars

    Hairspray helps remove that sticky residue left over when you peel off a sticker or label.

    Photo credit: How can I recycle this/Flickr

  • Nail Polish Remover 19 of 23
    18-nailpolishspill

    If you spill nail polish on a rug or piece of furniture, you will not want to use acetone-based nail polish remover to clean it. Instead, spray the stain with hairspray, let it sit for a minute, then dab with a rag. Repeat until the polish is gone.

    Photo credit: Disco-Dan/Flickr

  • Static eliminator 20 of 23
    19-static

    Spray hairspray on a brush prior to using to prevent a hair-raising experience. You can also use hairspray on the underside of clinging clothing to eliminate static.

    Photo credit: popofatticus/Flickr

  • Glitterizer 21 of 23
    20-glitter

    Yes, I just made that word up, but hairspray is a great way to coat your craft items with glitter! Coat the item with spray, sprinkle on glitter, shake off excess, and then seal with another coat of hairspray.

    Photo credit: Pernilla Rydmark (pernillarydmark)/Flickr

  • Artwork Conservation 22 of 23
    21-kids-artwork

    Kid's non-toxic paints and markers aren't meant to be archival. Coating them with a light spritz of hairspray will help them last longer.

  • Lint Remover 23 of 23
    22-lint

    Don't have a lint roller handy? Spray a little hairspray on a rag and wipe your clothing. The lint will stick to the hairspray and come right off.

    Photo credit: Thorsten Hartmann (theHalo)/Flickr

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