5 Great Alternative Uses for Tea #NationalIcedTeaMonth

The Power of Tea

Did you know tea could do these things?

Aside from the delicious taste and healthy benefits of tea, we wanted to share a few other uses of tea that perhaps you have never heard or thought about before.  Keep reading to find out 5 interesting ways you can use/reuse herbal tea.

Textile Dye

Throughout history tea has been used a natural dying agent for fabric and paper. Typically, colors range from off white to brown, but you can also achieve colors such as yellow, orange, and green. Color variety can be achieved by the strength of the brew used, type of tea, and the length of time the textile is submerged in the tea.


1637675-black-tea-loose-dried-tea-leaves-isolatedChagra / Dried Leaves

Used tea leaves which are dried after steeping are called chagra; derived from the Japanese word “cha” meaning “tea”. Chagra is an eco-friendly resource that has many uses around your home. Many people use chagra as an odor absorber in bedrooms, kitchens, and even mixed with cat litter. Chagra still retains many of tea’s nutrients, making it a great fertilizer or compost material to add to your garden or potted plants.



Used tea bags can be hung in a pan while bringing water to a boil to add extra flavor to your next meal. Once the water is boiling, remove the tea bag and add your grain of choice. This is a great way to add subtle flavor to your favorite recipe. Recommended pairings include jasmine tea with rice, cinnamon tea with oatmeal, and chamomile with pasta.


tea bags for cleaningCleaning

Used tea bags are a great addition to your natural cleaning product regime. Dampen a cloth in brewed (or re-brewed) tea for a chemical-free clean that can be used on anything from wood to windows, mirrors, and floors. Adding a used tea bag to dishes soaking in hot water will help to break up grease and loosen stuck food – naturally.


06-reuse-tea-bags-01 Personal Care

Cool, moistened used tea bags feel great over tired, sore eyes – just like cucumbers! But tea can do more than just rejuvenate your eyes. Massage a used tea bag on a sunburn to help soothe the skin and reduce pain. You can even rub moist tea bags on stings, bites, and/or cuts to reduce the time required to heal by drawing out toxins as well as reducing pain and swelling. Tea to the rescue!


Now that we’ve explored 5 of the best alternative uses for tea, you’ll likely want to test these applications for yourself. Moist tea bags can be kept for one day at room temperature, up to a week if refrigerated, and nearly indefinitely when re-dried properly.

This is only a small selection of the vast variety of uses for tea. Have you tried any of the ideas on this list or any other eco-friendly ways to use and reuse tea? Share your favorite with us in the comment section!


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