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Multifunctional Aluminium Foil

Updated on June 1, 2013

Something different to do with thin foil

Are there ways to reuse aluminium foil? You better believe it! Thin or aluminium foil is in everyone's home and from time to time, people throw it in trash without giving it a second thought! And you know what? It's not something to throw out lightly! Alu foil on land fields will probably outlive you, your kids AND your grandkids!

So, check this page out and find numerous household tips, gardening tips and craft projects with aluminium foil!

Hope you'll find something useful! Enjoy!

Don't throw away...

...your old aluminum foil. Tin foil has a lot of uses besides cooking or wrapping food! If the foil has been used for foods, be sure to wash it with detergent before re-using. Used aluminum foil will retain a slightly crinkled look, even when smoothed out, which adds nice texture for art projects. If you want a really smooth look, you should use a warm iron to press the wrinkles out.

Household Tips

Make an extra-large salad bowl

Use or reuse thin foil!

You've invited half the neighborhood over for dinner, but don't have a bowl big enough to toss that much salad. Don't panic. Just line the kitchen sink with aluminum foil and toss away!

Keep rolls and breads warm

Foil reflects heat!

Want to lock in the oven-fresh warmth of your homemade rolls or breads for a dinner party or picnic? Before you load up your basket, wrap your freshly baked goods in a napkin and place a layer of aluminum foil underneath. The foil will reflect the heat and keep your bread warm for quite some time.

Catch ice-cream cone drips

Keep your kids clean!

Keep youngsters from making a mess of their clothes or your house by wrapping the bottom of an ice-cream cone (or a wedge of water-melon) with a piece of aluminum foil before handing it to them.

Polish your silver

Simple and easy!

Is your silverware looking a bit dull these days? Try an ion exchange, a molecular reaction in which aluminum acts as a catalyst. All you have to do is line a pan with a sheet of aluminum foil, fill it with cold water, and add two teaspoons of salt. Drop your tarnished silverware into the solution, let it sit for two to three minutes, then rinse off and dry.

Scrub your pots

Just be careful and don't scretch!

Don't have a scrub pad? Crumple up a handful of aluminum foil and use it to scrub your pots.

Keep the oven clean

Use on reck not on bottom of oven!

Are you baking a bubbly lasagna or casserole? Keep messy drips off the bottom of the oven by laying a sheet or two of aluminum foil over the rack below. Do not line the bottom of the oven with foil; it could cause a fire.

Improve radiator efficiency

Use alu foil as heat reflector!

Here's a simple way to get more heat out of your old cast-iron radiators without spending one cent more on your gas or oil bill: Make a heat reflector to put behind them. Tape heavy-duty aluminum foil to cardboard with the shiny side of the foil facing out. The radiant heat waves will bounce off the foil into the room instead of being absorbed by the wall behind the radiator. If your radiators have covers, it also helps to attach a piece of foil under the cover's top.

Protect child's mattress

For parents of potty trained toddlers

As any parent of a potty-trained youngster knows, accidents happen. When they happen in bed, however, you can spare the mattress -- even if you don't have a plastic protector available. First, lay several sheets of aluminum foil across the width of the mattress. Then, cover them with a good-sized beach towel. Finally, attach the mattress pad and bottom sheet.

Hide worn spots in mirrors

Don't throw away a mirror!

Sometimes a worn spot adds to the charm of an old mirror; sometimes it's a distraction. You can easily disguise small flaws on a mirror's reflective surface by putting a piece of aluminum foil, shiny side facing out, on the back of the glass. To hold the foil in place, attach it to the backing behind the mirror or to the frame with masking tape. Don't tape it to the mirror itself.

Sharpen your scissors

Use foil leftvers

What can you do with those clean pieces of leftover foil you have hanging around? Use them to sharpen up your dull scissors! Smooth them out if necessary, and then fold the strips into several layers and start cutting. Seven or eight passes should do the trick. Pretty simple, huh?

Clean jewelry

Line a bowl with aluminium foil

To clean your jewelry, simply line a small bowl with aluminum foil. Fill the bowl with hot water and mix in one tablespoon of bleach-free powdered laundry detergent (not liquid), such as Tide. Put the jewelry in the solution and let it soak for one minute. Rinse well and air-dry. This procedure makes use of the chemical process known as ion exchange, which can also be used to clean silverware.

Move furniture with ease

Slide it with thin foil

To slide big pieces of furniture over a smooth floor, place small pieces of aluminum foil under the legs. Put the dull side of the foil down -- the dull side is actually more slippery than the shiny side.

Clean out your fireplace

Using alu foil makes cleaning easy

Looking for an easy way to clean the ashes out of your fireplace? Place a double layer of heavy-duty aluminum foil across the bottom of the fireplace or under the wood grate. The next day -- or once you're sure all the ashes have cooled -- simply fold it up and throw it away.

Clean your barbecue grill

Cleaning a grill easy way

After the last steak is brought in, and while the coals are still red-hot, lay a sheet of aluminum foil over the grill to burn off any remaining foodstuffs. The next time you use your barbecue, crumple up the foil and use it to easily scrub off the burned food before you start cooking.

Make a barbecue drip pan

Simply, easy, fast made drip pan

To keep meat drippings off your barbecue coals, fashion a disposable drip pan out of a couple of layers of heavy-duty aluminum foil. Shape it freehand, or use an inverted baking pan as a mold (remember to remove the pan once your creation is finished). Also, don't forget to make your drip pan slightly larger than the meat on the grill.

Improvise a frying pan

Camping tip for less luggage

Don't feel like lugging a frying pan along on a camping trip? Form your own by centering a forked stick over two layers of heavy-duty aluminum foil. Wrap the edges of the foil tightly around the forked branches but leave some slack in the foil between the forks. Invert the stick and depress the center to hold food for frying.

Improve outdoor lighting

Put thin foil behind a light

Brighten up the electrical lighting in your backyard or campsite by making a foil reflector to put behind the light. Attach the reflector to the fixture with a few strips of electrical tape or duct tape -- do not apply tape directly to the bulb.

What should you recycle, renew, and reuse? Practically everything!

Don't Throw It Out: Recycle, Renew, and Reuse to Make Things Last
Don't Throw It Out: Recycle, Renew, and Reuse to Make Things Last

Is there a gadget graveyard in your house? Want to get the most mileage out of your electrical appliances? Tired of having to choose between paying high prices for repairs or good money for a cheap replacement? Well, no more! These savvy secrets help you make the most of your purchases-and your money-by making things last longer and work better. You'll discover:

-More than a thousand ways to maximize the value of everything you own, from furniture and fishing reels, to cell phones and ceiling fans, to iPods and earrings, and much more

-Practical, money-saving ideas for making things last longer-from giving batteries staying power to keeping a washing machine in top condition

-Fix-it-fast tips for making simple, inexpensive repairs when belongings go on the fritz

-Learn how to say good-bye to possessions when it's time, whether by recycling, donating, selling, or tossing


Speed your ironing

Use aluminium foil as heat reflector for this

When you iron clothing, a lot of the iron's heat is sucked up by the board itself -- requiring you to make several passes to remove wrinkles. To speed things up, put a piece of aluminum foil under your ironing board cover. The foil will reflect the heat back through the clothing, smoothing wrinkles quicker.

Attach a patch

Alu foil helps you fix clothing

An iron-on patch is an easy way to fix small holes in clothing -- but only if it doesn't get stuck onto your ironing board. To avoid this, put a piece of aluminum foil under the hole. It won't stick to the patch, and you can just slip it out when you're finished.

Clean your iron

Run iron over thin foil

Is starch building up on your clothes iron and causing it to stick? To get rid of it, run your hot iron over a piece of aluminum foil.

Gardening tips

Put some bite in your mulch

Keep insects and slugs away

To keep hungry insects and slugs away from your cucumbers and other vegetables, mix strips of aluminum foil in with your garden mulch. As a bonus benefit, the foil will reflect light back up onto your plants.

Protect tree trunks

Cheap and effective

Mice, rabbits, and other animals often feed on the bark of young trees during winter. A cheap and effective deterrent is to wrap the tree trunks with a double layer of heavy-duty aluminum foil in late fall. Be sure to remove the foil in spring.

Scare crows and other birds

Reuse alu foil scraps

Are the birds eating the fruit on your trees? To foil them, dangle strips of aluminum foil from the branches using monofilament fishing line. Even better, hang some foil-wrapped seashells, which will add a bit of noise to further startle your fine-feathered thieves.

Build a seed incubator

Reuse shoe box for this simple homemade incubator

To give plants grown from seeds a healthy head start, line a shoe box with aluminum foil, shiny side up, allowing about two inches of foil to extend out over the sides. Poke several drainage holes in the bottom -- penetrating the foil -- then fill the box slightly more than halfway with potting soil, and plant the seeds. The foil inside the box will absorb heat to keep the seeds warm as they germinate, while the foil outside the box will reflect light onto the young sprouts. Place the box near a sunny window, keep the soil moist, and watch 'em grow!

Grow untangled cuttings

Thin foil slows water evaporation

Help plant cuttings grow strong and uncluttered by starting them in a container covered with a sheet of aluminum foil. Simply poke a few holes in the foil and insert the cuttings through the holes. There's even an added bonus: The foil slows water evaporation, so you'll need to add water less frequently.

Craft projects

Make an artist's palette

No more cleaning!

Tear off a length of heavy-duty aluminum foil, crimp up the edges, and you've got a ready-to-use palette for mixing paints. If you want to get a little fancier, cut a piece of cardboard into the shape of a palette, complete with thumb hole, and cover it with foil. Or if you already have a wooden palette, cover it with foil before each use and then just strip off the foil instead of cleaning the palette.

Sharpen your scrapbook craft punches

With an instructions

Paper punches are a common tool used by scrappers there are many different ways you can use a craft punch. Scrapbook craft punches come in many shapes and sizes. These little tools often become dull or may get stuck when you are trying to punch through certain papers. Here is how to sharpen your scrapbook craft punches in order to keep them in working condition so you can use them for all of your decorating needs.... Instructions

Great, easy projects using every day things

Jumbo Book of Easy Crafts, The (Jumbo Books)
Jumbo Book of Easy Crafts, The (Jumbo Books)

Arranged by type of material, this guide gives many craft ideas for using such household items as aluminum foil, plastic berry baskets, beans, buttons, catalogs and magazines, clothespins, cookie cutters, and milk cartons. Several projects are also suggested for less commonly found materials, such as beads, beeswax, jingle bells, and fabric paint. Clear, step-by-step instructions include detailed black-and-white illustrations. For teachers, day-care providers, or parents, this handy manual will help to create a wealth of useful, if not unique projects and activities.


Creating effects with scrap foil

So many things can be used

It is a cheap medium to work with, supplies being obtained freely from the wrappers of sweets, chocolates, biscuits, cigarettes, and other articles. If one prefers to use new foil, it may be obtained quite cheaply, and there is no waste at all.

Pictures of your own design, calendars, trays, advertising signs and firescreens are but a few of the articles that can be made in a wide range of patterns and colors. Materials required are few, and consist of a piece of glass, the size of the article being made, cardboard, Indian ink, photographic paste, and passe partout binding..... Read more

Make Christmas tree garland

Easy and fun for kids

Cut tin foil into strips about 4-5" long and 2-3" wide. Fold lengthwise, or just crinkle and twist. Make a loop and twist ends together. Link the next strip through and twist ends together. Continue linking until the garland is long enough to drape nicely on your tree. For added sparkle, attach lightweight decorations or colored paper to links.

Make Liberty Bell

Fun craft for preschoolers

The Liberty Bell is one of our country's patriotic symbols that stand the test of time. Preschoolers are eager learners so why not encourage them to learn about our wonderful country while making a fun, educational preschool craft! Gather up a few supplies, read the definition of 'liberty' and make this Liberty Bell educational craft... Instructions

The Magnetic Fish Bowl

Fun for kids with so little spent money

This unusual fishing game is simple to assemble and great fun to play. And you won't have to worry about pulling poor live fish out of the water.... Instructions

King for a Day Crown

Just right for Father's day

Celebrate Father's Day by making your dad feel like royalty! Your father can be a king for the day with this easy, fun project... Instructions

The Foil Family

Thin foil man with a heart

Unlike your average tin men, these foil characters have plenty of heart. All it takes is a pinch here and there to make them strike any pose your child likes... Instructions

Make a rainstick

With an instructions

Rainsticks are ceremonial musical instruments used to invoke the rain spirits. They are made by people who live in the deserts of northern Chile. In Chile, rainsticks are traditionally made from dead cactus tubes with hundreds of cactus spines hammered into the tube. Tiny lava pebbles cascade gently through the tube, sounding much like rain.... Instructions

Chocolate kiss trees

Cute craft project

Brighten dark corners with a holiday tree made from foil-wrapped chocolate kiss candies. Pretty to look at and simple to make, chocolate kiss trees are an easy, kid-friendly holiday craft. Toothpicks anchor shiny Hersheys-brand kisses to styrofoam cones, while bright-colored foil makes it easy to create stripes or patterns... Instructions

Magic wand craft

Fun project for kids

Make the Magic Wand Craft with your kids, and then watch them play as if they have magic powers. With a wave of the magic wand you can become a magician or even a fairy godmother.... Instructions

Rainbow fish craft

Simple enough for small children

This is SUCH a fun craft for young children to do. There's something about shiny little scales that just cheer my 2 year old daughter right up! Our rainbow fish has a permanent place of honor on the refrigerator... Instructions

Recycled Crafts Box
Recycled Crafts Box

Divided into sections dealing with paper, plastic, metal, and fabric, the book tells how these materials are made, traces their history, and explains how they can be recycled, emphasizing benefits to the environment.These activities produce items that children will enjoy making and using, such as jewelry crafted from paper beads, dolls created from plastic yogurt cups, stilts fashioned out of empty paint cans, and planters made from old shoes. The finished items are shown in full-page color photos. The procedural steps are clearly written, well numbered, and illustrated with clear pencil drawings.

Ecoart!: Earth-Friendly Art and Craft Experiences for 3-To 9-Year-Olds (Williamson Kids Can! Series)
Ecoart!: Earth-Friendly Art and Craft Experiences for 3-To 9-Year-Olds (Williamson Kids Can! Series)

This is truly a comprehensive source book . It begins with art-and-craft supplies made from natural objects and materials, and ends with recycling and composting. It's all here: bark, twigs, pebbles, weeds, prints, plants, and feeders. There is nothing totally new, but the broad scope and organization of projects in related groups with step-by-step, single-page directions make the book a first purchase. Drawings are clear and relate well to the text. Carlson indicates the level of difficulty of each activity with a symbol, and uses a clock to indicate when more than one hour is needed to finish (most require less than an hour). The style is breezy and chatty, and includes occasional tidbits of interest related to the project being described. With its large format and large type, this is a very easy book to use.


Leave your tip for reusing alu-foil here so others may benefit from your knowledge! Thank you!

Do You Know of Any Other Use for Aluminium Foil? - Share with your ideas!

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    • profile image


      6 years ago

      When having a dance party, crinkle foil & tape to the ceiling to create a reflective surface for strobe lights & black lights. Use fishing line to hang metallic colored stars to give the space more texture

    • whiteskyline lm profile image

      whiteskyline lm 

      6 years ago

      That is a lot of uses for tin foil...who'd a thunk? I didn't know many aside putting over food, and throwing it at bats

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      What an amazing list of uses!!! Blessed.

    • EpicFarms profile image


      6 years ago

      I use foil to sharpen my paper punches all the time (followed by waxed paper to keep them working smoothly ;o)

      Excellent lens!

    • mihgasper profile image

      Miha Gasper 

      6 years ago from Ljubljana, Slovenia, EU

      Wow! So many ideas to explore... We use alu foil only in the kitchen, but now I will have to think about other uses as well!

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      Happy April Fool's Day and Blessed

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      Wow! Thank you so much for this!

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      I think you must have got all the possible uses. wow!

    • yourselfempowered profile image

      Odille Rault 

      6 years ago from Gloucester

      Wow! I had no idea there were so many uses for foil! Great lens! Blessed. :)

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      Into small Aluminium cake containers put slices of cucumber slices....and place them between flower and vegetable areas in the garden. during the growing season.....keeps slugs and snails away, they don't like the reaction of the cucumber and metal.

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      You have written the valuable tips and information about an aluminium foil, your hard work is really appreciable

    • GonnaFly profile image


      7 years ago from Australia

      What a great collection of uses for foil! Must try the foil in the mulch trick to deter the slugs.

    • adamfrench profile image


      7 years ago

      Impressive lens, thumbs up

    • Callmenette LM profile image

      Callmenette LM 

      7 years ago

      wow, great info!

    • TolovajWordsmith profile image

      Tolovaj Publishing House 

      7 years ago from Ljubljana

      Very useful tips!

    • joanv334 profile image


      7 years ago

      Thanks for the tips!

    • stephenteacher profile image

      Stephen Carr 

      8 years ago from Corona, CA

      Great ideas! Who knew? Terrific lens.

    • luvmyludwig lm profile image

      luvmyludwig lm 

      8 years ago

      I had no idea about the polishing silverware trick, I will definitely have to try this next time I come across some silver pieces. Great job as always.

    • Mihaela Vrban profile imageAUTHOR

      Mihaela Vrban 

      8 years ago from Croatia

      @Othercatt: Thanks for an idea about how to use alu foil for arts! :)

    • Othercatt profile image


      8 years ago

      Aluminum foil is also good for 'etching'. Draw a picture on the opposite side (making sure to turn letters backwards) and when you're done, turn the foil around and you'll have a beautiful 'etching'. This is a great lens with many useful ideas. Thumbs up!

    • eclecticeducati1 profile image


      8 years ago

      You have a lot of great tips here! Blessed by an Angel.

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      Some years ago a friend gave my kids some for a cross country trip (along with other stuff). They had fun on the trip modeling it like clay, making fun sculptures. It was such a great idea.

    • michelleart profile image

      Michelle Collins 

      8 years ago from Florida

      Reminds me of my late aunt. She would wash her foil and use it over & over again. My uncles would poke fun at her...Great Lens! Like & Fav!

    • Bellezza-Decor profile image


      8 years ago from Canada

      So many tips on using aluminum foil. The ironing board tip is great!

    • Home Interior D profile image

      Home Interior D 

      8 years ago

      Super ideas for aluminium foil. I like the way you've presented all the information too.

    • Mihaela Vrban profile imageAUTHOR

      Mihaela Vrban 

      8 years ago from Croatia

      @Home Interior D: Thank you for visit and for your comment! I'm glad you find these tips useful! :))

    • norma-holt profile image


      8 years ago

      Wow, I can't believe how many ways this stuff can be used. Top marks fave and lensrolled.


    • profile image


      9 years ago

      I camp a lot so I know just how useful aluminum foil is. Almost as much as duct tape.

    • TonyPayne profile image

      Tony Payne 

      9 years ago from Southampton, UK

      Great ideas, 5*****. Some of these are really innovative.

    • NAIZA LM profile image

      NAIZA LM 

      9 years ago

      Sounds like a fun project to do. Great ideas. As well, congratulations on your purple star!

    • chefkeem profile image

      Achim Thiemermann 

      9 years ago from Austin, Texas

      Nice star, Michelle. And a blessing, too. :-)

    • Holley Web profile image

      Holley Web 

      9 years ago

      What an array of foils ideas! This is great I have to bookmark and come back often. The pictures make it feel like home. Faved and Fived!

    • drifter0658 lm profile image

      drifter0658 lm 

      9 years ago

      The only tip anyone needs is the one about the chocolate kiss Christmas trees....all others can wait ;)

    • Demaw profile image


      9 years ago

      When I was in school, aluminum foil sculptures were easy art projects to do. 5* lens.

    • profile image


      9 years ago

      Lots of good tips here. Good for you! - Susie

    • profile image


      9 years ago

      Things I had no idea foil was good for. Thanks you so much for all that work.

    • lynnasafriend profile image


      9 years ago

      I think the BBQ tip was perfect, Why didn't I think of that earlier LOL

    • profile image


      9 years ago

      WoW, what a lot of great ideas! I hadn't thought about using foil under my ironing board cover... I'll have to give that a try. Nicely done,


      : )

    • OhMe profile image

      Nancy Tate Hellams 

      9 years ago from Pendleton, SC

      Wow. You have thought of everything. I think my mom was ahead of her time because she sure saved every piece of foil.

    • Dianne Loomos profile image

      Dianne Loomos 

      9 years ago

      Welcome to the Money Saving Tips

    • Dianne Loomos profile image

      Dianne Loomos 

      9 years ago

      Welcome to the Money Saving Tips

    • Paula Atwell profile image

      Paula Atwell 

      9 years ago from Cleveland, OH

      Great tips as usual, Willow. Loved this lens. :)

    • greenerme profile image


      9 years ago

      Wow, this is incredibly useful! Excellent work, you should come out with your own book! I find another outstanding lens every time I visit your profile.

    • profile image


      9 years ago

      Outstanding lens and worthy of a squid angel blessing :) Also to sing your praises for all your cheerful contributions to the squidoo community - Thank You! When we were kids, on a rainy day, we'd all fashion our own little aluminum foil boats and make a complete shiney navy in the bathtub - good inexpensive fun!

    • thepartyanimal2 profile image


      9 years ago

      Yahoo you are a winner in The Squidoo Home for The Holidays Lens Contest So Go Grab your badge.

    • blue22d profile image


      9 years ago

      Well, these are some of the greatest ideas....I must lensroll. Five stars and favorite to ya.

    • ElizabethJeanAl profile image


      10 years ago

      Great list of tips. Some I knew but some are new.

      Thank you,


    • profile image


      10 years ago

      You are a recycling genius!! I love your ideas and am always surprised by how useful things you can do with something that would have ended up in a landfill.

    • naturegirl7s profile image

      Yvonne L B 

      10 years ago from Covington, LA

      Welcome to the Naturally Native Squids group. Don't forget to add your lens links to the appropriate plexos and vote for them.

    • SoSimplyStephanie profile image


      10 years ago from DeFuniak Springs

      Nice lens again! 5*

      Be sure to enter this one too!

    • profile image


      10 years ago


      This is a great posting to know about

      Multifunctional Aluminium Foil. I have also a source - Technologylk to get information about dome mirrors. The advantages of window films

      include improvement of shatter resistance, lowering of glare and reduction of cooling loads. I am so impress with your posting and waiting for next.


      Sarfaraz Khan

    • ctavias0ffering1 profile image


      10 years ago

      I love the Foil family - can think of lots of uses for them, especially as it isn't so easy to get pipe cleaners around here for craft projects.

      Great ides here :-)

    • religions7 profile image


      10 years ago

      I don't know how you come up with these things. 'ion exchange'? Lovely. I'm a chemistry teacher by profession (though I don't actually teach it) and didn't know that!


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