11 nifty uses for milk (besides drinking it)

From soothing sunburns to fixing cracked china, milk does more than just a body good. Networx looks at 11 "nifty" uses for milk, including:  

  1. Thaw frozen fish in a milk bath. Milk acts as a natural moisturizer to restore hydration and flavor back to frozen fish. Real Simple magazine suggests leaving a submerged piece of frozen fish in a milk bath in the refrigerator for 24 hours. One commenter suggests that it works on frozen scallops, too.
  2. Create a milk powder paste for a gentle facial mask. Mix milk powder with enough water to make a paste, gently massage into your face and let it sit for 10 minutes before rinsing, as suggested here.
  3. Polish tarnished silverware with sour milk. Soak tarnished silverware in sour milk for 30 minutes and wash in soapy water to both polish and brighten the silverware.    
  4. Repair fine china. Put a piece of fine china with a hairline crack in a big pot, cover in milk and simmer the milk for 45 minutes. The proteins in the milk bond with the clay in the china, thus sealing the crack. Some readers of the blog "apartment therapy" warn that it doesn't work with every crack or chip, but "when it does work, the fix is permanent."  
  5. Soothe itchy skin. Combine enough milk powder and water to create a paste that can treat bug bites, sunburns and irritated skin. Yahoo! Shine points that the enzymes in the milk powder help neutralize insect-bite venom and can relieve sunburn pain.  Milk powder can also be added to pulverized oatmeal, corn starch and baking powder for a chicken pox-easing oatmeal milk bath.
  6. Mix with oatmeal to create an industrial-strength hand cleaner. When regular soap just won't cut it, create a paste of oatmeal and milk. Rub vigorously on hands to remove the grime and soften your skin. Lemon juice can also be added to help cut through exceptionally greasy messes.
  7. Stain remover. The best way to get rid of most ink stains on clothes is to soak the stain in milk. For really stubborn stains, Lifehacker suggests adding vinegar to the milk when soaking the stained clothes to break down and lift the stain.  
  8. Shine patent leather. To quickly shine patent leather shoes, run a milk-soaked rag over the shoes. For a deeper shine, apply the milk to the shoes, let dry and buff the shoes to a shine. The method also works on other patent leather products, including purses and jackets. Milk can also be applied to a clean cotton swab to wipe off scuff marks on patent leather.
  9. Remove makeup. Combine powdered milk with warm water to gently lift off makeup. It not only removes makeup, but moistures skin as it works.
  10. Helps swallow large pills. Milk can help swallowing pills by coating the throat and protecting the stomach lining as the pill breaks down. However, milk can react with some medication, such as tetracycline, so check with a pharmacist or doctor first.
  11. Cool a spicy mouth. The "Mythbusters" even busted the myth that water or beer worked as well as milk when it comes to soothing a burning mouth after eating spicy food. Thanks to casein, a fat-loving compound found in milk, the spicy capsaicin oil found in chilies binds with the casein to lessen the burning pain.

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Reader's Digest adds that milk can also boost the flavor of corn on the cob.