18 Things You Never Knew You Could Fix with Nail Polish

How to make the most of your nail polish, from wedding day dress emergencies to handy ways to fix a chipped tile.

Smooth out slightly splintered wood

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Seal a wooden surface with a coat of clear nail polish (for stained wood surfaces, first find a color that matches the wood). The new finish will stop supplies such as wooden hangers from snagging clothes and keep fingers splinter-free. Here's how to remove a splinter using adhesive tape.

Waterproof your garden labels

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Make plant labels waterproof by coating them in clear nail polish. You'll never have to Google how often to water your herb garden again. This trick also works for waterproofing address labels on packages. Try these expert gardening tips for beginners.

Prevent rust stains

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Coat the bottom of metal cans (think shaving cream and hair spray) with clear nail polish to prevent rust from developing and staining your sink or medicine cabinet.

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Stop a run in tights in its tracks

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Keep a small hole from spreading by dabbing the run with clear nail polish. Try these tricks for solving common wardrobe malfunctions.

Fix peeling pearl buttons

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Coat (fake) pearls with clear nail polish to stop them from peeling. Here's how to clean your own jewelry at home.

Prevent frayed fabric from getting worse

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Tame frayed fabric, such as the wisps on the cuffs of a nylon-lined jacket or the tiny broken threads on the bottom of a well-worn wool pencil skirt, with clear polish.

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Stop a cracked windshield from getting worse

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Stop a small windshield crack in its tracks with clear polish. Working in the shade, paint the crack on both sides of the glass. Move the car into the sun to allow it to dry. You'll eventually need to repair the windshield, but in the meantime, use polish to buy time and shop around for the best estimate.  Try these tricks to clean your car.

Treat an unraveling shoelace

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Dip an unraveling shoelace in clear nail polish. Twist it back into shape and allow it to dry.

Protect tarnish-prone costume jewelry

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Prevent costume jewelry from tarnishing by brushing over it with clear nail polish. This hack will also stop skin discoloration and irritation from cheap jewelry.

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Seal an envelope

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Seal an envelope with a brush of nail polish. For a fun letter, such as a party invitation or thank you note, use a bright color.

Hide scuff marks on a shoe or bag

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Fill in a scuff with a dab of nail polish that matches the piece. No one will be any the wiser. (Note: If you plan to resell a vintage or designer item, the paint could lower its value.)

Hide a chipped tile

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Color in a small chip on a kitchen or bathroom tile with a matching nail polish color. The small brush and variety of colors available will ensure accuracy.

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Tighten a loose screw

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Secure a screw by first painting it with nail polish, which will give it extra stickiness. Paint over the top of the screw to prevent it from developing rust.

Prevent chipped car paint from rusting

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A small indent or piece of chipped paint could develop rust once the spot is exposed to the elements. Seal yours off with a coat of clear nail polish.

Organize a jumbled set of keys

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Organize your mess of keys by painting the tops of the most important ones with different colored nail polish. You'll always know that blue means home and red means gym locker.

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Reattach a loose rhinestone

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The ultimate wedding must-have? A bottle of clear nail polish. In addition to fixing any manicure fiascos, the polish can also be used to reattach a loose rhinestone or crystal.

Fix a window screen

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Mend a torn window screen with a dab of clear nail polish.


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