Unexpected Uses For Banana Peels That Will Make You Wonder Why You Ever Threw One Away

Bananas are a great source of potassium, antioxidants, and vitamins. But after the fruit is eaten, what is there to do with the peel other than throwing it in the trash? Answer: a bunch of alternative beauty methods and household projects.

Take a peel and rub it over your skin for a natural moisturizer. Or, place a peel in the soil of your garden to deter pesky insects from eating your plants. Keep reading to learn about these banana peel hacks and many more!

A Natural Teeth Whitener

A Natural Teeth Whitener
Barb Bednarski/Pinterest
Barb Bednarski/Pinterest

Say goodbye to overpriced enamel-eliminating teeth whitening strips and procedures, and say hello to an all-natural solution. Instead of making your teeth overly sensitive, try using a banana peel to remove surface stains from your pearly whites.

The citric and salicylic acid found in bananas can remove those pesky stains without wearing down tooth enamel and making your teeth sensitive to things like ice water. Your wallet and teeth will thank you for no longer using harsh chemicals.

Shoe Polish Without The Funky Smell

Shoe Polish Without The Funky Smell
Regina Renee SuperHost/Pinterest
Regina Renee SuperHost/Pinterest

If you’re like us, you’re not a huge fan of the shoe polish smell. It’s harsh, lingers, and makes faces scrunch in a “not so cute” manner. The good news is that you can throw away the oily polish for a more natural substitute.

Instead of polish, think about using a banana peel. The waxy side of the peel is great to diminish scuff and scratch marks. And the inner-side can be used as the “polish.” Afterward, wipe the shoes down with a soft towel.

Buff Out Old Silver

Buff Out Old Silver
Mahlebashieva/Shutterstock
Mahlebashieva/Shutterstock

Like leather shoes, there is no reason to spend money on the chemical-laced polish to buff out your old silverware, especially when there is a natural solution. But unlike leather shoes, you’re going to have to make a paste to get rid of the pesky rust that builds up on silver.

You’re going to want to take your banana peel, a bit of water, and stick them both in a blender until you create a paste. Then, take a toothbrush and start buffing your silver with the paste.

Help Reduce The Appearance Of Scars

a banana peel taped to an arm
Jonathan Pierre/Pinterest
Jonathan Pierre/Pinterest

For some people, scars are “battle wounds,” and for others, they’re just annoyances they want to get rid of. Instead of buying various creams and lotions while hoping something will reduce the appearance, redness, and swelling of a scar, try using a banana peel.

The esterified fatty acids found in banana peels are actually used in those creams, so we might as well go straight to the source! To diminish the scar, put a peel on it each night for a few hours or overnight.

Make Your Plants Happy With Fertilizer For Your Garden

Make Your Plants Happy And Fertilizer For Your Garden
Gärtnern/Pinterest
Gärtnern/Pinterest

One of the most common uses for fruit and vegetable peels is to use them in compost. Banana peels, for example, are great natural fertilizers because they’re rich in nutrients that your plants require.

So, the next time you’re thinking about throwing away your banana peel, think about utilizing it in a more beneficial way. Take the peel outside, dry it out in the sun, and throw it in with your soil. Your plants will thank you for the nutrient boost!

Give Cooking Recipes A Banana Twist

Give Cooking Recipes A Banana Twist
Kelly DiSimone/Pinterest
Kelly DiSimone/Pinterest

Although most people don’t eat banana peels, that doesn’t mean they can’t be used to spice up some simple dishes. Take a rice dish, for example. A great way to give the dish a bit of flavor is to stick the rice in a banana peel.

Take your rice, evenly disperse it on one side of the peel, close the other side over the top, and tie it off with twine. Cook it in a steamer for about 30 minutes, and you have an entirely new rice dish.

Keep Your Meat From Drying Out In The Oven

Keep Your Meat From Drying Out In The Oven
Jon/Pinterest
Jon/Pinterest

This banana peel hack is going to sound very interesting, so keep an open mind. The oils and moisture found in banana peels are a great way to keep your chicken, roast, filet, or any other meat you’re cooking from drying out in the oven.

The only step is to place the peel on top of your meat of choice before sticking it in the oven. All of those yummy oils and moisture will absorb into the meat, allowing it to maintain its juicy flavor.

Get Rid Of Annoying Fruit Flies

Get Rid Of Annoying Fruit Flies
Kylie Jerkins/Pinterest
Kylie Jerkins/Pinterest

If you’ve ever had to deal with fruit flies, then you know that they can be one big headache. They never seem to go away, no matter how many times you spray down your kitchen or throw away rotting fruit.

Well, hold up on throwing away your bananas. Instead, take the peel and put it in a mason jar with plastic wrap on top. Poke some holes in the wrap, and watch as the pesky flies fly straight into the trap.

Ethylene Gas In Banana Peels Helps Ripen Fruit Quicker

Ethylene Gas In Banana Peels Helps Ripen Fruit Quicker
Regina Pfaefflin/Pinterest
Regina Pfaefflin/Pinterest

With this quirky banana peel hack, you’ll say goodbye to the days of waiting around for your fruit to ripen. We know, it sounds kind of strange, fruit ripening other fruit, but hear us out! The ethylene gas found in banana peels is one of the agents that helps fruit ripen quicker.

So, take your banana peel and place it in a brown paper bag with need-to-ripen fruit, such as an avocado. It’s not an overnight miracle, but the avocado will ripen faster than it normally would.

Reduce Bruising Overnight

Reduce Bruising Overnight
Britta Pedersen/picture alliance via Getty Images
Britta Pedersen/picture alliance via Getty Images

Bruised skin is painful, especially when it’s located somewhere sensitive like the rib cage. Thankfully, there is a natural hack that will help reduce bruising: banana peels!

Leaving a peel on a bruise for a few hours will help reduce the black and blue coloring as well as the swelling. And, if you’re looking for even quicker results, try leaving a peel on overnight. You’ll be surprised by the results!

Poison Ivy Has Nothing On Banana Peels

Poison Ivy Has Nothing On Banana Peels
Mamabee/Pinterest
Mamabee/Pinterest

During the summertime, it’s not uncommon for people to be exposed to natural annoyances like poison ivy and poison oak, especially if you don’t know what to look for. The good news is that you don’t have to go out and buy expensive ointments to reduce the itchiness and swelling that goes along with exposure.

The inside of a banana peel is a natural remedy that will help reduce inflammation and pain. But remember, if the area looks serious, don’t hesitate to call a medical professional.

Dry Skin Is A Thing Of The Past

Dry Skin Is A Thing Of The Past
Rose Flo Ru/Pinterest
Rose Flo Ru/Pinterest

It’s time to stop running to your local CVS and buying overpriced lotions. Instead, run next door to the grocery store and buy some bananas. Once they’re ripe, don’t throw away the peels.

The inside of a banana peel is a great natural moisturizer that will help even the most dehydrated skin. Just scratch the inside of the peel with a fork and rub it all over your face and arms, leaving it on for about ten minutes. Then, gently rinse off with some warm water.

Stop Scratched DVDs From Skipping

Stop Scratched DVDs From Skipping
Patricia Neeley/Pinterest
Patricia Neeley/Pinterest

One of the more annoying things to happen during movie night is to have your DVD start to skip, especially if it is in the middle of an action scene. We recommend fixing the scratch before it becomes a problem, and in a very unconventional way.

Gently rub the peel in slow circles over the disk. Then, wipe off any residue and clean the disk with a glass cleaner. The waxy substance will fill in any scratches, and your movie night will be saved from annoying skips.

Rid Your Garden Of Unwanted Pests

Rid Your Garden Of Unwanted Pests
Sarah Morgan/Getty Images
Sarah Morgan/Getty Images

Not only do banana peels make for great fertilizer, but they also help rid your garden of any pesky insects. It’s time to stop buying unhealthy pesticides and start using natural solutions such as banana peels.

The high levels of potassium found in the peels are a huge deterrent for insects such as aphids and ants. So, “planting” peels at the base of your flowers, veggies, and fruits is a great way to get the plant-eaters to retreat.

Swiftly Lift Troublesome Ink Stains From Your Skin

Swiftly Lift Troublesome Ink Stains From Your Skin
CRIS BOURONCLE/AFP via Getty Images
CRIS BOURONCLE/AFP via Getty Images

Scene: you’re jotting down notes during a meeting, and all of a sudden, your pen explodes on your hand. Sigh. Unfortunately, soap and water aren’t cutting it, and your hands are still stained with unsightly black ink.

Solution: run to the kitchen and pull out that banana you were saving for lunch. Take the white side of the banana peel and wipe it all over the ink stains. The natural oils from the peel will help weaken the pigment in the ink stain, allowing for easy removal.

Banana Peels Have Acne-Reducing Powers

Banana Peels Have Acne-Reducing Powers
Joyce Boccia/Pinterest
Joyce Boccia/Pinterest

If you want to stop buying expensive acne treatments that don’t seem to be working, try making your way to the produce section of the grocery store.

Wait until the banana is brownish yellow and cut off a small section of the peel. Then, rub the inside on your acne twice a day. Your blemish should reduce in size due to the lutein and carotenoids, fat-soluble compounds known to help reduce swelling and acne breakouts.

Remove A Splinter Without Tweezers

Remove A Splinter Without Tweezers
Bonnie Mullinix/Pinterest
Bonnie Mullinix/Pinterest

Removing splinters can be annoying and sometimes painful, depending on how deep you have to go with your tweezers to rid yourself of all of the wood. The good news is there is an easy way to extract the tiny sliver of wood without any tears falling.

You’re going to want to tape a small piece of banana peel, white side down, over the wound. Leave it on for a half-hour. The enzymes in the peel will encourage the wood to move to the surface of the skin for easy plucking.

Restore A Nice Shine To Your Indoor Plant Leaves

Restore A Nice Shine To Your Indoor Plant Leaves
DeAgostini/Getty Images
DeAgostini/Getty Images

If you have indoor plants, then you know that the leaves and petals can get a bit dusty if they aren’t looked after properly. Well, instead of taking a towel, duster, or any other cleaning supply to your plant’s delicate leaves, run to your fruit bowl and grab a banana.

Using a banana on your plant leaves will not only bring back its natural shine, but it will give the plant nutrients in the process!

Embarrassing Warts Are A Thing Of The Past

Embarrassing Warts Are A Thing Of The Past
Roberto Machado Noa/LightRocket via Getty Images
Roberto Machado Noa/LightRocket via Getty Images

Before spending money on a dermatologist appointment, try this natural hack. Like the “acne remover,” banana peels are a great natural resource that can help soften warts. If you take a tiny bit of peel and rub it on your wart for a minute or two a day, you’ll see some great results.

A few days after you start using the peel, you should notice your wart softening, shrinking, and if all goes according to plan, falling off entirely! Of course, see a doctor if you believe things need medical attention.

Migraines And Headaches Don’t Stand A Chance With Peels

Migraines And Headaches Don't Stand A Chance With Peels
Jill Hinson/Pinterest
Jill Hinson/Pinterest

If you’re prone to headaches and migraines, then you’re going to want to remember this hack for a rainy day. Sitting in a dark, quiet room, drinking lots of water, and maybe taking some medication are typical go-to actions for people when they feel a migraine coming on.

Instead, freeze a banana peel. The potassium in the peel will help relieve some of the pain. You’re going to want to leave one half of the cool peel on your forehead and the other on the back of your neck until they become warm.

Reduce Puffy Eyes

Reduce Puffy Eyes
Lady Formula/Pinterest
Lady Formula/Pinterest

If you didn’t get a good night’s rest, don’t worry too much about the bags under your eyes. All you’re going to want to do is follow this little banana peel hack to reduce the puffiness, especially if you’re out of cucumbers.

You’re going to want to take a tiny sliver of banana peel and put the white wide on the puffy part under your eye. Leave it on for about ten minutes and rinse with some cold water for a more “awake” look.

Give Your Indoor Plants A Nice Nutrition-Rich Snack

Give Your Indoor Plants A Nice Nutrition-Rich Snack
ujjwal mitra/Youtube
ujjwal mitra/Youtube

Your outdoor plants shouldn’t be the only ones benefiting from the nutrients offered by banana peels. But we’re not going to fertilize the plants with the peels. Instead, we’re going to make a “cocktail.”

First, soak a peel in a large jar of water. After you soak the peel for a few hours, toss the peel and take the resulting banana water to your watering can. There, add the banana water with five parts of regular water. Then, get to watering your indoor plants with potassium-rich water.

Attract Some Beautiful Butterflies And Birds To Your Garden

Attract Some Beautiful Butterflies And Birds To Your Garden
Robert Alexander/Getty Images
Robert Alexander/Getty Images

If you’re a nature lover and would like to attract some pretty butterflies and cool birds to your garden, then you’ll love this banana peel hack. Instead of buying more butterfly bushes for your already-packed garden, try using the banana peels you were going to toss away.

All you have to do is put the peels on slightly raised platforms in your garden. From there, watch as butterflies, birds, and other insects enjoy the peels’ sweetness and make your garden their new home.

Feed Some Friendly Neighborhood Animals

Feed Some Friendly Neighborhood Animals
KAREN BLEIER/AFP via Getty Images
KAREN BLEIER/AFP via Getty Images

It’s so easy to toss a banana peel in the trash after eating the fruit. But we’re here to tell you there is a way to reuse the peel for the greater good. And when we say that we mean feeding them to the neighborhood wild animals.

If you have a bird feeder, dry out the peel, grind it up, and add it to the feed for the birds, squirrels, chipmunks, and whoever else likes to frequent your yard.

Nothing Goes To Waste… Eat The Peel!

Nothing Goes To Waste, Eat The Peel!
CHRISTOPHER DEWOLF/South China Morning Post via Getty Images
CHRISTOPHER DEWOLF/South China Morning Post via Getty Images

While we don’t recommend eating a banana peel raw, there is a way to eat the skin. To get even more nutrients, antioxidants, and fiber from your banana, try using the peel in a juice! Of course, there are a few steps before the actual juicing part.

First, you’re going to want to boil the peel for about ten minutes. Afterward, put it through a juicer with your favorite fruits and veggies for a deliciously nutritious snack.

Make Some Homemade Banana Vinegar

Make Some Homemade Banana Vinegar
kenneth gagot/Pinterest
kenneth gagot/Pinterest

Hot take: stop buying vinegar and utilize your banana peels to make some homemade banana vinegar. Surprisingly, banana peels are a great ingredient for homemade vinegar. And the good news is there are many recipes online that are easy to follow and give recommendations on what to use the vinegar on.

TheIndianSpot, for example, says their unique recipe is fantastic to use as a salad dressing as well as in more complex dishes such as ceviches.

Reduce Burn Irritation

Reduce Burn Irritation
EyesWideOpen/Getty Images
EyesWideOpen/Getty Images

If you’re like us, then you’ve most likely suffered from a burn before, whether from a kitchen stovetop or the sun. Thankfully, if you’re out of aloe, there is another natural remedy that will help soothe the burn.

Walk on over to your fruit bowl, pick out a nice banana, eat the fruit, and before you toss away the peel, run the white side gently over your burn. The oils found in the peel will help alleviate some of the pain.

Get Healthy And Shiny Hair

Get Healthy And Shiny Hair
Christopher Polk/Getty Images for Clear Channel
Christopher Polk/Getty Images for Clear Channel

There’s just something very appealing about shiny, healthy, and strong hair that makes some people go out and buy expensive, high-end products. Well, that, or they spend way too much money at the hair salon.

Instead, try using a banana peel. The antioxidants in the peel are great to strengthen your hair while making it very shiny and soft. With this hack, you’ll be whipping your hair back and forth with the best of them!

Glowing Skin Is Yours To Have

Glowing Skin Is Yours To Have
Arthur Elgort/Conde Nast via Getty Images
Arthur Elgort/Conde Nast via Getty Images

Banana peels not only have acne-reducing capabilities, but the fruit skin can also help brighten your skin. This hack will have you walking away from the skincare aisle of the store and into the produce aisle for a bundle of bananas.

You’re going to want to mix a piece of a banana peel, two teaspoons of oatmeal powder, two teaspoons of powdered sugar, and a teaspoon of milk. Massage the mixture on your face and rinse after 20-30 minutes. The result: beautiful glowing skin.

Control The Oil On Your Skin

Control The Oil On Your Skin
BSIP/UIG Via Getty Images
BSIP/UIG Via Getty Images

If your face is prone to being overly oily, then think about using this little banana peel hack instead of buying blotting paper. Not only will you save money, but your skin will thank you for the all-natural remedy that will exfoliate and have your skin glowing (in a good way) in no time.

The mixture is simple: a banana peel, one teaspoon of honey, and one teaspoon of lemon. Apply it to your face, rinse it off, and gently blot your face with a soft, clean towel.