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17 Unexpected Uses for Hair Dryers

How many times has your hair dryer come in handy for some use that wasn’t drying your hair? It’s happened to me quite a few times. 

Hair dryer on blue tiled surface

Hair dryers are surprisingly versatile tools. They’re basically handheld portable heaters (and if they have a cool setting, portable fans), so they can dry a lot more than just blow dry hair.

From defrosting frozen foods to removing stubborn stickers, and even aiding in DIY crafts, let’s take a look at some of the alternative ways to use blow dryers. 

Alternative Ways to Use a Blow Dryer

1. Remove Stickers, Labels and Price Tags with a Hair Dryer

Aim your hairdryer at stickers or labels. The heat from a hair dryer will loosen the adhesive. This makes them easier to peel off without leaving residue.

2. Other Adhesives, like Tape from Walls or Old Weather Stripping

Hair dryers are also great for removing:

  • Old adhesive weather stripping that won’t come off a door easily
  • Tape and other adhesives stuck to walls that seem likely to damage the finish or leave residue

3. Removing Water Rings

Use your hair dryer on a low setting to gently dry and remove water rings or marks from wooden furniture or surfaces. Hold the hair dryer a few inches away from the water ring on the wooden table.

Aim the warm air onto the water ring, moving the hair dryer in a circular motion. Keep it going for a few minutes. As the heat evaporates the moisture trapped in the wood, the water ring should start to fade.

Once the water ring has disappeared, stop using the hair dryer. After that you might want to use a furniture polish to restore shine. Gently rub the furniture polish onto the affected area with a soft cloth, following the wood grain.

4. Thawing Food

One of the coolest uses for a hair dryer is to speed up the defrosting process of food items. Blow hot air over frozen meat or anything else that needs to thaw

5. Defrosting Freezers

If you have a freezer that needs to be defrosted or de-iced, use a blow dryer to heat the inside of it and get things melting.

6. Frozen Pipes & Locks

Got a frozen pipe? How about a lock that won’t work due to the cold? If you have a place to plug in your hair dryer, you can take care of this problem in a few minutes.

7. Craft Projects

Use a hair dryer to speed up the drying process of paint, glue or other craft materials.

8. Dry Caulking, Spackling, etc.

Sometimes spackling and caulking can take longer than overnight to dry, and you have more to do on this project! Applying some heat from the hair dryer can speed up that process. Start with the low setting or even the cool setting.

9. Removing Wrinkles

One of my favorite uses of a hair dryer! In fact, I used to keep a small one at my workplace years ago, just for this purpose.

Use your hair dryer to quickly smooth out wrinkles in clothing and other fabrics, The low setting is best, especially on delicate fabrics, like silk or nylon.

If you’ve packed clothes for a trip and they’ve become crumpled in your suitcase, use this method to quickly refresh them before wearing.

10. Softening Candle Wax

To remove spilled or excess candle wax from surfaces, apply heat from the hair dryer to soften the wax, making it easier to wipe away.

11. Removing Excess Wax from Candle Holders

To remove wax from candle holders, use a hairdryer to blow hot air into the holder to melt the wax. Once it’s softened, you can pull it out.

12. Loosening Tight Leather Shoes

Put on thick socks and put your foot in a shoe. Use the hair dryer on a medium (low if you don’t have medium) setting and point it at the tight spots while flexing your foot to stretch the leather.

13. Removing Moisture from Electronics

You may have heard that putting a wet phone in rice doesn’t work – and that’s true. However, if your smartphone or other electronic device gets wet, use a hair dryer on a low, cool setting to gently dry out the moisture and prevent potential damage.

14. Drying Wet Shoes

You can use a hair dryer to dry out wet shoes quickly and effectively. First, use a towel or paper towel to soak up as much moisture as possible.

Next, point the hair dryer on a low heat setting at them, holding it about six inches away from the shoe. Move the dryer around slowly to get all the parts of the shoe.

15. Removing Dust and Debris from Electronics

The best tool for this job is an air can or – even better – a compressed air blower (I own and love this one). But in a pinch, a hair dryer on a low setting can blow the dust and debris out of your keyboard or the vents on your electronics.

It works best if you attach a concentrator to the nozzle to focus the air.

16. Crafting with Melted Crayons

Do you have a pile of old or broken crayons lying around? Instead of throwing them away, turn them into melted crayon art for kids.

Take the paper wrapping off the crayons. Put the crayons on a canvas or paper, or whatever surface you want to decorate. Then, use your hair dryer on high heat to melt the crayons.

You can point the hair dryer directly at the crayons or at an angle to create different effects. As the colors melt and mingle together, you can use tools like toothpicks or brushes to shape the wax and create different textures. You can even add glitter or other embellishments while the wax is still hot for an extra touch of sparkle.

17. Remove Crayon Marks from Walls

Set the hair dryer to a low heat setting. Point it at the crayon marks on the wall, holding it a few inches away.

Move the hair dryer back and forth over the crayon marks and the heat will soften the wax. As the crayon wax melts, use a clean cloth or paper towel to gently wipe away the softened crayon.

Once the marks are gone, you can clean the wall with a mild soap and water solution to remove any residue.