4 things you didn’t know about coffee grounds
There is the 9:00 am coffee, at the office, with your (favourite) colleagues, your frontal lobe still in your bed. There is the 11:00 am coffee. That one is either alone or with your (favourite of your favourite) colleague… and milk to make it last longer. Then comes the miraculous 2:00 pm espresso. It knocks your food coma out and brings you the boost you need to go through the rest of the day. For some of you, it is even followed by the 4:00 pm cappuccino. Let’s be honest, that one is the 11:00 am cousin. Its mission is to keep you away from your desk and direct line… or enlighten your get-togethers.
What about the 6:00 pm coffee? Or the Sunday’s 10:00 am one? If you don’t know them yet, they’ll quickly become your new coffee rituals. The first thing you must do: stop throwing your used coffee grounds away!
We like to say it: coffee is more than a beverage – literally!
6:00 pm, it’s time for a beauty treat
It is 6:00 pm. Your friends just left your living room after an afternoon coffee and you find yourself with an endless supply of used coffee grounds. Most of all: you have a candlelight dinner with the man of your dream. It’s only natural that you want to be perfect for him – what a lucky guy.
And it’s easy. Thanks to these brewed coffee grounds that you were about to throw away, you now have a home Spa. Body scrub, facial scrub, anti-cellulite scrub, eye balm, self-tanning lotion, hair mask, soap, even facelift… coffee grounds can work very hard for you (and your date).
Mix 2 tablespoons of coffee grounds with 1 teaspoon of honey and 2 teaspoons of sweet almond oil (olive oil works too)… and tadaaa, here is a 100% natural scrub, rich in vitamins and antioxidants, that you can use for your face or body. Have a hot shower (to open pores), apply the scrub with soft circular massages and rinse off for a silky smooth skin. This scrub is also said to reduce the cellulite appearance. Now, kill two birds with one stop and add some grounds to your shampoo – their abrasive texture helps strip oils and buildup for glossy and shiny hair. Success guaranteed, but light-colored hair might want to avoid using this mask.
You still have a few more minutes, right? So let’s now rejuvenate your summer tan. Just add a cup of olive oil to one cup of coffee grounds. Rub it gently all over your body and leave on for about 15 minutes before washing off. And here you’re with a radiant and tanned skin… how could He resist?
For your next dinner, think about mixing 1 teaspoon of brewed coffee grounds with 1 tablespoons of yoghurt and a few drops of lemon, apply the mixture to your under eye area and let sit for about 15 minutes before washing off with hot water, to reduce puffiness and tighten your skin! So long Panda eyes!
Sunday, 10:00 am, let’s do some gardening
Good morning, how was your date? So-so? We have the perfect remedy for you: gardening. Hop hop hop, put on your boots, sunglasses and… your used coffee grounds.
If you grow acid-loving plants like azaleas, roses, rhododendrons, hibiscus, hydrangea, oak (why not?) etc., your old ground is your dream fertilizer and pest repellent.
Simply combine your old ground with some raw yard waste such as brown leaves, dead grass clippings or dry straw, and spread the mixture around your beautiful plants. Et voilà! The coffee acts pronto by infusing nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium (and a hint of magnesium) to the soil. All the nutritive elements your plants are crazy about. And the worms as a bonus.
You can also just throw the grounds on your soil and wait for the rain (or your sprinkler) to slowly bring the nutritive elements to the roots. Don’t be heavy-handed though, it’s key to keep the compost balanced, too much nitrogen would kill it all.
Oh. You’re more the house-plants kind? No problem. Mix the grounds with some warm water to use it as a fertilizer spray or feed for them. Your house-plants will love you back.
Is that carrot and lettuce that I can see in your backyard, near by the rose bush? It might be worthwhile to sprinkle used grounds around them to protect them against garden pests like ants, snails, aphids, slugs etc. Yes, coffee is a pest repellent, too. Don’t be surprised if your cat also deserts your garden – like insects, some mammals are repelled by the grounds’ smells (combined with orange peels).
A final tip for your carrots: share a bit of old dried grounds with the carrot seeds before planting – they’ll sow more easily and won’t get eaten by evil pests.
Sunday, 2:15 pm, yuck cleaning
Your family lunch went on and on? And worst, you now have to clean a mountain of dishes. This is the right time for used coffee grounds to get on stage.
First, to rescue your dirty pans and pots. You simply need to scrub the surface with the grounds – a rag can even be enough. Just keep away any ceramic or dishes that stain easily from that method. Besides, don’t panic about the grounds going into your drain. They’re on a mission to unclog it (but only if they’re mixed with hot water and dish soap).
Now that you have some space in your fridge, think about placing a small container filled with old grounds, open, in the back of your fridge (or freezer). Your fridge will be smell-free for about two weeks. Don’t forget to remove (and replace) these smelly grounds afterwards.
Oh no, one of your guests hid a scratch on your grandma’s wooden table! Forget about your evil plans and grab what’s left of your old coffee grounds. Add warm water and rub the mixture over the scratch before wiping it off gently after letting it sit for a while. The coffee stain should help to cover up the mess.
Wednesday, 1:30 pm, let’s go wild
You hear them running and screaming at the corner of your street, they are coming closer… and here they are, back home after their half-day at school and you wonder: how am I going to keep my wonderful children busy the whole afternoon? You kept some old coffee grounds, didn’t you?
Confident, your first shot: “Kiiiiids, let’s make homemade candles! Yaaaay!”. Let’s assume it worked and they’re mega ultra-enthusiastic (even if you only allowed them to watch). Place one cup of wax leftovers in a heat-safe-recipient that you will put over the top of a saucepan filled with water. This double boiler will melt the wax gently in about 5 minutes. In a plastic coffee cup, sprinkle a layer of dried coffee grounds at the base, a candle wick and pour gently some melted wax over it. Finish sprinkling some more grounds and let dry for at least 12 hours.
Give it another shot with the Antique-looking paper. Your children will love dipping sheets of stationery into this cool-looking mixture of grounds and water, waiting a few minutes, then letting dry and brushing off the grounds… unless their teacher already showed them the trick.
You might even want to ask their support to transform that coffee table that you’d found at Ikea (like gardening, Ikea has always been a magic remedy to so-so dates). You loved its wood appearance… if only you could pretend you got it from your great grandmother. Challenge accepted: in a glass container, put 1 piece of steel wool with 1 tablespoon of used coffee grounds and top that with white vinegar. Close the container, shake and let it sit for a day before taking action. Put on plastic gloves to fish for the steel wool and rub it all over your table. Wipe the grounds off and let that first coat sit for about an hour before taking care of the second coat. Et voilà!
There’s one last coffee ritual you could learn: to read the grounds. But for that one, we leave it up to you and… Patrick Jane.