Introduction: Unusual Uses for Nail Polish

I have a lot of nail polish. Some I wear, some I keep around for random projects or other uses. Here are some of my favorite unusual uses for nail polish.

Step 1: Prevent Tarnishing

A lot of the charms you find in beading stores are listed as silver, Tibetan silver, or Bali silver---this really just means plain, cheap metal alloy that WILL tarnish. I've found that coating these charms in clear nail polish extends their life. Adding a new coat every so often will further help to stave off unsightly tarnish.

You can also coat the inside of your rings to keep them from turning your finger green.

Step 2: Securing Screws

Nail polish can help secure loose screws or screws that are constantly wiggling out. Polish will also help prevent against rust/tarnishing.

Step 3: Cracks and Scratches

Polish can be used to fill in scrapes and scratches in wood furniture. Clear is probably your best bet as I'd imagine it'd be hard to match up wood coloring.

Clear or white nail polish can also be used for sealing chips in china. The polish can help prevent further damage by keeping water from getting to the chips and causing cracks.

Step 4: Color Coordination/Identification

Nail polish can help you easily identify keys, electronics cords, and more!

I've also used nail polish to write my initials inside staplers, hole punchers and other things to prevent them from going missing.

Step 5: Loose Buttons

Apply a coat of clear polish over the thread of a loose button to secure it.

Step 6: Labels

Apply clear nail polish to homemade labels to keep them from smudging or wearing off too quickly. Polish can also be water resistant, to a point. You will need to reseal every so often.

As previously mentioned, I'll also use colorful polishes to add my name to objects that tend to go missing in my classroom.

Step 7: Matches

Covering the tips of matches can help protect them against moisture, therefore extending their life (and not leaving you freezing in the woods when camping).

Step 8: Screens

Have a window screen with holes? Bugs starting to get in? Cover the holes with nail polish to prevent the screen from becoming more damaged and keep bugs out!

Step 9: Scuff Marks

Keep your shoes looking fresh by using matching nail polish to touch up any markings. If you can't finding matching colors, use nail polish to add a little flair and decorate your shoes.

Step 10: Pranks

Cover a bar of soap in clear nail polish to prank your friends :-D

This doesn't ruin the soap and after a few attempts at washing, the polish will wear off.


stllbrown made it! (author)2017-06-27

Be careful when using it on shoes or wood. There can be quite a range of reactions depending on the chemicals used on the products. Also, I was told that fingernail polish over a mosquito bite stopped itching. And it does! But after a day or so the cracking of the polish starts to itch horribly. :-)

Not_Tasha made it! (author)Not_Tasha2017-06-27

I actually had a roommate in college who suggested this for chiggers. I was going to add it, but upon further research it seemed like maybe not a great idea since it could cause allergic reactions etc.

Imerrymary2 made it! (author)Imerrymary22017-07-05

60 years ago we used clear nail polish on chigger bites. It worked very well and would crack off after some serious sweaty play-time. By then the bites were beyond the itchy stage. I never heard of anyone with an allergic reaction. I don't remember trying it on mosquito bites because the theory was that chiggers burrow into the skin and were suffocated by the seal made by nail polish. Skeeter bites are different and I think nail polish probably wouldn't be helpful.

38ren made it! (author)38ren2017-06-27

wow I've never heard about that trick before... interesting :) but if the nail polish itself starts to itch isn't it pointless? haha

wumpsdad made it! (author)2017-07-05

Seal broken nickel plating on supermagnets to prevent oxidative breakdown.

BobK71 made it! (author)2017-06-28

Fishermen use it as a waterproof glue for fly tying and emergency fishing rod fixes.

It can also be used as a temporary fix for deep scratches in your car's paint to delay rust from forming.

38ren made it! (author)2017-06-27

I love the one where you used it to fix screens, I have a broken one at home I'll have to try it out!

Not_Tasha made it! (author)Not_Tasha2017-06-27

The picture was really hard to do, but it does work. We have cats so screens are frequently getting poked.

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Bio: I am a teacher outside of Boston and I love making cool stuff! Any prizes I'm lucky enough to win will go directly to ... More »
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