Instructables
Picture of 8 Unusual Uses for Barf Bags
Worshiping at the porcelain altar. Shouting groceries. Shouting for Hugh. Calling Ralph on the big white telephone. Barf. Blow. Blow chunks. Hurl. Hork. Regurgitate. Lose lunch. Toilet tango. Spew. Puke. Gastrointestinal pyrotechnics. Upchuck. Yak. Airsickness. Carsickness. Seasickness.

Whatever you want to call it, barf bags will catch it. But they can do so much more. From airplane hacks to terrestrial everyday uses, airsickness bags are more versatile than the world gives them credit for. And they're free.

Step 1: Store leftovers

Picture of Store leftovers
Not every restaurant provides bags, boxes, or other containers to safely bring home leftovers.

Airsickness bags are lined with plastic, have tabs to seal in the freshness, and fold nicely. You can surreptitiously stuff in all the bread you couldn't finish before the appetizers came. Or carry home the soup of the day. The same properties that hold in food post-digestion can also hold the same food prior to mastication.

Disclaimer: using barf bags from the seat pocket on an airplane for food storage might be sort of gross. People do put their filthy tissues in there (among other things), and I can't imagine that those pockets get a thorough wash very often. It might be a little like eating off of a hotel bedspread. YMMV. I know a woman who swears by barf bags for storing leftovers who has yet to get sick.

Step 2: Barf with confidence on the go

I have never done the Technicolor yawn on an airplane. I have, however, managed to woof my cookies in a number of other locations. As have many of you, I'd imagine.

An airsickness bag is a great accessory for pregnant women, college freshmen, and young schoolchildren. Anyone susceptible to vomiting while on the go could use an extra couple of bags. Keep them in your purse, in your backpack, or folded up in your back pocket behind your wallet. Never again will you be surprised by an encore performance of lunch, presented in reverse to everyone else on the bus. 

It's the politest way to yak in public. They even sell cute ones: http://www.morningchicnessbags.com/ (See what they did there? Get it?)
 
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audreyobscura5 months ago

I use barf bags as flash diffusers for my camera!

bo88y6 months ago

For some of these uses, coffee bags would work.

evacooper3 years ago
why not just put your water bottle under the tap?
TN777 evacooper2 years ago
Because if you bring a barf bag to the bathroom, most people will assume your going to go toss your cookies into the bag when you get in the bathroom. If you bring your water bottle, people will think your up to something.
You can always also put an empty water bottle in your bag at the time of security (or empty yours right beforehand) and then fill it up at a water fountain after security. My cousin led me to this epiphany recently.
wilgubeast (author)  evacooper3 years ago
They tend to not fit under airplane faucets. (The picture is misleading, as it was taken in my real-life, normal-sized bathroom.)
Mig Welder2 years ago
You forgot "Yawn in Technicolor"!
No they didn't. In step two it says ''I have never done the Technicolor yawn on an airplane''
I3uckwheat2 years ago
Hell Ya Kim Chee!!!
wilgubeast (author)  I3uckwheat2 years ago
Right?! That's the fancy organic stuff from the farmer's market, too. Love the username, sir or madam.
That would be a sir!

And all i know about Kim Chee is that its a Korean food. And it was traditionaly made by using a wide array of natural things (fish oil ect..) and it was buried in the ground for a few years before eaten to let it ferment. and i love the stuff.
Mr.19112 years ago
Interesting 'ible.
geckomage2 years ago
that my dear sir is an EPIC win. baha
PsycoPyro3 years ago
I have actually had the puppet use come in handy before haha
supermall3 years ago
Would also be nice to use the bags as pay out slips. haha
winniekate3 years ago
i've always grabbed them since i was little. My dad was a pilot, and we used them for playing stewardess at home. When my son was in grade school, i would pack his lunch in them once in a while, and he and his friends always liked that, too.
sweetweaver3 years ago
lulz on the axe.
anyheck3 years ago
In my opinion, the most important secondary use for barf bags is as a photographic flash diffuser:

http://www.digital-photography-school.com/diy-flash-diffuser-airline-barf-bags
This is an Absolutely Awesomely Cool Use of Any Barf Bag i have had the chance to lay my 4eyes on... Awesome Writing too.
kalmurat3 years ago
imho the last use is unethical
artdreams3 years ago
Cosigning on not drinking the airplane water. No smuggling necessary, an EMPTY water bottle isn't contraband. I carry one every time and fill them inside security, but I also choose not to be picky about water from the drinking fountain (or even the restroom sink from most countries). Has saved my comfort on many a flight.

Local water might have a bit of chlorine taste, but you could also bring a filter bottle. I whined about the funny taste in water once and was reminded of the people in countries who are lucky to getting anything like clean water. Got over it.

But you can still use the bag as a trash bag for the fiddly bits that collect during a long flight, esp if you bring your own food.

Your hurling descriptions made me laugh loud enough to scare my cat.
mikephx3 years ago
Yes, I second that about avoiding the "non-potable" water.

As an extremely frequent flier, I've noticed that most people don't realize you can bring an EMPTY water bottle through security. Better yet, bring along an empty reusable canteen or nalgene-type container with a carabiner clipped to your carry-on bag, and refill it at a drinking fountain, typically found outside a restroom.
lyonpridej3 years ago
My husband's an airline mechanic & he says he wouldn't drink lavatory water even if it was marked potable. Some other good ideas & I've even used some of them when I've had to travel with babies/toddlers. But they don't re-stock those bags after every flight & it's no fun to be airsick, or have your kids sick (or even worse,be one of the people who has to sit next to someone barfing all over the place) & not have a bag in the seat pocket when you need it - so please don't take all of them in your aisle, ask the flight attendant for a couple please. :)
medionlvr3 years ago
You can get'em for nearly free at the grocery store. i do it all the time. when you are buying the grind your own coffee double or triple the bag and grind just a half a pound . do it again. now you have a pound of coffee and six bags with a decorative motif. you will be paying about $6.99/pound for the empty bags but they weigh so little you wont notice.
Coffee bags are NOT waterproof barf bags. Just pour some water in them and you will quickly find out for yourself... Barf bags are specialized bags that are lined with a waterproof polyethylene plastic lining to hold fluid and prevent messy leakage. You cannot buy these in a grocery store. Kelli Lee - Owner of The Barf Boutique http://www.barfboutique.com
but they are wax coated inside to help keep the fresh ground coffee as fresh as can be. i did not specifically say you could buy them at the store. my intent was to explain that if you buy a tripled bag with coffee in them you are going to pay for the minuscule weight of the bag as it will be the total weight including the three bags and the ground coffee in them. that wax coating will last a couple of uses and you will have to judge how many times you can use each one before you toss it and get another.
berky933 years ago
I cut holes in them and hang them from the tray table to use as a smartphone stand so I can watch movies.
abigdeal3 years ago
I would not drink water from an airplane's water system. Usually it is marked as "non-potable", and even if it is not marked this way there have been a number of reported incidents where passengers have gotten sick. Especially not a good way to start a vacation!
agis683 years ago
I think you can do much more things....1/ simple hat of desktop lamp, 2/ add some heat source open it and you've made a flying lantern 3/ temporary ice fresh box for sensitive foods and much more
JAGGIE3 years ago
Just a caveat...check to be sure the water on the plane is potable. I've been on planes where it wasn't!
wilgubeast (author)  JAGGIE3 years ago
Smart. Ask your flight attendant.

Thank goodness Qantas has potable water. I ran into a bit of the dysentery after a trip down under, and the flight from Sydney to LAX to DIA was (to put it mildly) uncomfortable. Water in, water out.
Really enjoyed your “8 Unusual Uses for a Barf Bag.” Especially - #6 mailing envelop & #7 seat saver. Very creative. As a professional “barf bag designer,” I thought we had thought of everything. Thanks for the new ideas! Kelli Lee – owner of the Barf Boutique http://www.barfboutique.com
dwream3 years ago
I returned home on a commmerical airliner yesterday. I wish I had seen this Instructable before that flight. Not knowing when I'll have a future opportunity to collect "free" bags, I found that you can actually buy them! See, for example, www.barfboutique.com.
cgcanada883 years ago
Never again have I seen this much euphemisms about barfing all put together... Kudos!!! Other than that, excellent 'ible! :D
askjerry3 years ago
There is something odd and sick about mailing someone something in a barf bag.

Gotta do that now. (evil grin)
mizzoufan963 years ago
#Winning! :D
Z.Backas3 years ago
Wade, I'd argue that gasoline is less expensive than most bottled waters anywhere!
Another admirable Instructable though, from the "Unusual Uses" Master!
Gasoline here as of yesterday was $3.38 a gallon or about $0.026 an ounce. An 8 ounce bottle of water is $1.00, or about $0.125 an ounce. Even 32 ounce bottle of water at $1.00 is still about $0.031 an ounce. When you do the math, bottled water is very expensive and a total rip off.
babssteele3 years ago
I may never buy another envelope again...thanks for the tip!
I don't know where to get them other than robbing the next airplane Im on
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