Share on Facebook

A Trusted Friend in a Complicated World

15 Extraordinary Uses for Wax Paper

From icing a cake to creating faux-frosted glass, wax paper can do much more than advertised.

1 / 15

Polish metal fixtures

Use a sheet of wax paper to remove water stains from sink faucets and handles. The waxy finish will work out existing stains and help prevent new stains from forming as quickly. Looking in your kitchen cabinet for more quick fixes? These clever uses for salt will spice things up. 

2 / 15

Make a piece of artwork

Update a wooden stool, end table, or cutting board by transferring an image onto it with wax paper. Use a regular ink-jet printer to print the image you’d like to transfer onto a sheet of wax paper. Next, simply hold the printout tightly to the surface you’d like to transfer it to, and use a credit card to gently scrape the top of the sheet (the card will act like a squeegee to transfer the ink). For complete instructions, go to

3 / 15

Make a Swiffer wipe

Cut a sheet of wax paper to the size of your wet-dry mop and use it instead of those expensive refill wipes. The wax will attract dust and dirt and you’ll be left with shiny buff floors. Did you know you can wash and reuse old Swiffer pads?

4 / 15

Stop a sticky rolling pin

Place pie or pizza dough between two sheets of wax paper and roll the dough with a rolling pin. The barrier sheet will prevent stickiness (and you won’t need to use copious amounts of flour!).

5 / 15

Start a fire

On its own, wax paper works well as fire kindling (consider taking it along on camping trips for food purposes, and then tossing it into the fire for a second use). For even more of a spark, roll dryer lint into the paper. The combination will create a roaring fire in no time. These are the steps to a perfect fireplace fire.

6 / 15
istock/Noppol Mahawanjam

Fix a zipper

Got a sticky zipper? Run a piece of wax paper over the hardware to lubricate and get things moving again.

7 / 15

Store your cheese

Turns out, it’s not so great to store your cheese in plastic wrap. “The problem with plastic is that cheese is in a constant state of change. There’s evaporation happening, and plastic wrap doesn’t let humidity out. So the cheese sort of sits in water,” Jordan Edwards, a Chicago-based cheesemonger, told Epicurious. Fix the problem by buying cheese papers, or mimicking their effect with a layer of wax paper and a layer of plastic wrap. These other storage tricks can make food last longer.

8 / 15

Make a funnel

Create a makeshift funnel by rolling up a piece of wax paper. For hardware, one sheet should do the trick. For liquids, try three or four layers, and pour slowly to make sure your creation holds up.

9 / 15

Protect your cutting board

Use your cutting board twice in one go by lining it with a piece of wax paper. Once you finish chopping your veggies, dispose of that sheet and lay out a new one for those strawberries you’ve planned for dessert. Here are 7 effective ways to truly clean a cutting board.

10 / 15
istock/Jenny Bonner

Ice a cake

Cut a sheet of wax paper to the size of your cake and pipe the text you’d like to write on the cake straight onto the paper. Pop the sheet into the freezer for about 45 minutes and use a spatula to transfer the text onto your cake.

11 / 15
istock/Lisa Thornberg

Clean garden tools

Remove dirt and prevent rust by rubbing metal garden tools, such as shovels and rakes, with wax paper.

12 / 15

Cover microwaveable food

Although it’s not as heat-safe as parchment paper, wax paper will hold up just fine in the microwave. Place a sheet over microwaveable dishes to prevent food from splattering inside the appliance. Friendly reminder: Never put these in the microwave.

13 / 15
istock/Sezer Alcinkaya

Bake a cake

While wax paper is not synonymous with parchment paper and should not be directly exposed to the heat of your oven, it can be used at the bottom of cake pans, as long as the paper is completely covered by cake batter or piecrust. The non-stick surface will ensure your cake pops right out of the pan and will help to make your cleanup faster.

14 / 15

Wrap paintbrushes

If you’re painting a room and need to take a break, wrap your paint brushes in wax paper to prevent them from drying out. When you’re done for the day, use the same sheet over the top of your paint can (underneath the lid) to stop the paint from drying into a hard-to-break seal.

15 / 15
istock/Hal Bergman

Create faux-frosted glass

Need to quickly hide the clutter inside your china cabinet? Cover it up in a pinch with a sheet of wax paper. Open the door and tape the paper to the back end of each window. Light will reflect through, but the visual of all your unopened mail won’t.

Reader's Digest
Originally Published in Reader's Digest