Uses for Used Tea Bags

If you’re a big tea drinker, you may go through several bags of tea each day. While some prefer loose leaf tea (tea purists do, typically bagged tea is inferior quality), nothing beats the convenience of tea bags, and most of us use them for drinking or medicinal purposes (be sure to use tea packed in unbleached tea bags!).

Dual Bags

Creative Commons License photo credit: diongillard

And those used tea bags can be used for several good purposes.

Here are some ideas on what to do with all those leftover tea bags.

(This post makes me feel very Tightwad Gazette-ish! If you’ve never read the books, I highly recommend them for ideas and inspiration on how to re-use things that would otherwise be discarded.)

Uses For Used Tea Bags


This one’s fairly obvious, but used tea bags make wonderful compost for your garden. Simply add them to your compost heap and let nature takes its course.

Under eye cosmetic.

Used tea bags can be cooled and placed on the eyes for a wonderful soothing relaxant.  If your skin is irritated, try chamomile. If you have bags and puffiness, try something with caffeine (like black tea), as the caffeine will  help shrink the tissues (many of the over the counter depuffer products for eyes contain caffeine).  I throw my used tea bags in the fridge in a bowl and keep them just for this purpose.

Cool sun burns.

Peppermint tea bags are great for sunburns because the menthol has a cooling effect on the skin. (Ever noticed how it hurts to drink water after eating an Altoid? Yeah.)  Leave tea bags to cool then place the bags on the burnt areas.

Use on cuts.

Used tea bags are also great on cuts and bruises. You can use any variety but green tea, peppermint and chamomile have good soothing qualities.  Some claim that used tea bags are also good for bee stings and other insect bites.

Decaf. earl grey tea

Creative Commons License photo credit: House Of Sims

Did you know that if you reuse a tea bag, the second cup is decaf?

Now you do.

Many times you will hardly notice any change in flavor when you put fresh hot water on a used tea bag.

Got any other uses for used tea bags? Leave them in the comments below!

p.s. You can shop online for tea here.

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