The source of the following is Maxx’s article on My Technology World, Oct. 22, 2014. I’ve rewritten and reformatted the essay.
First, a few fun facts about egg shells:
- An egg shell is made of calcium carbonate, which is also the main ingredient in some antacids. Each medium sized egg shell has about 750-800 mgs of calcium.
- The shell makes up 9-12% of an egg’s total weight, and contains pores that allow oxygen in and carbon dioxide and moisture out.
- The shell color of an egg is representative of the breed of hen that produces the egg. White hens produce white eggs and brown hens produce brown eggs.
13 cool ways to use egg shells
1. As a nourishing face mask:
- Pulverize dried egg shells with a mortar and pestle.
- Whisk the powder in with an egg white.
- Put the solution on your face as a healthful, skin-tightening facial.
- Allow the face mask to dry before rinsing it off with water.
2. Treat skin irritations:
- Drop an eggshell into a small container of apple cider vinegar.
- Let it soak for a couple of days.
- Dab the mixture on minor skin irritations or on itchy skin.
3. As a powerful cleaner:
- Ground eggshells make a wonderful (and nontoxic!) abrasive for those tough-to-clean pots and pans.
- Mix them with a little soapy water for a powerful clean.
- Hummingbird feeders tend to grow all sorts of nasty stuff. Clean it by first by rinsing with hot water. Then add some crushed egg shells, fill 1/2 way with water, and shake. The shells act as an abrasive, removing mold or other built-up gunk. Rinse well before re-filling with hummingbird food.
- It’s almost impossible to get a scrub brush down the narrow neck of a thermos. Clean your thermos using the instructions above for hummingbird feeders.
4. As a garden fertilizer:
- Eggshells are rich in calcium and other minerals that help your garden thrive.
- Crush eggshells into tiny pieces and sprinkle into each hole before planting.
- Then, sprinkle additional shells around the base of your plants every two weeks.
5. Containers to start seedlings:
- Fill an egg carton with empty, rinsed eggshell halves.
- Poke a hole in each eggshell half for drainage.
- Add potting soil and one or two seeds to each shell.
- When the seedlings are big enough for transplanting outside, just crack the shell at the bottom and plant them, shell and all.
6. Pest control:
- Crush eggshells and scatter them around your vegetables and flowers to fend off slugs, snails, and cutworms.
- These soft-bodied critters don’t like crawling over sharp pieces of shell.
- The smell of eggs will also deter deer.
7. House plant booster:
- Keep a mason jar of eggshells covered with water for watering indoor plants.
8. As a cat deterrent from using your garden as a litter box:
- Crush egg shells.
- Scatter shells in the areas that cats frequent.
- After stepping on those shells a few times, they’ll move on.
9. Better tasting coffee:
- Add some crushed eggshells to ground coffee before brewing it to make it taste less bitter.
- When you’re done, toss the grounds and shells on your compost heap; or
- add the coffee grounds — a rich source of fatty acids, essential oils and nutrients (nitrogen, potassium, phosphorus and other minerals) to your garden soil! Some examples of plants that thrive in a nitrogen-rich planting area include leafy vegetables such as spinach, tomatoes, corn; roses, camellias, rhododendrons and azaleas.
10. As a powdered calcium supplement:
- Instead of purchased calcium pills, simply bake your egg shells at 350 degrees for 8 minutes.
- Let them cool.
- Grind them to a fine powder.
- Add a teaspoon or less of the powder to your favorite smoothie or juice once a day.
11. Make your own sidewalk chalk:
- What you’ll need:
- Approximately five empty egg shells
- 1 teaspoon flour
- 1 teaspoon very hot water
- food coloring (for colored chalk)
- Wash and dry the egg shells.
- Crush the egg shell into a bowl and grind it until it is a powder. Make sure all the pieces are ground. Take out any big pieces before going on to the next step.
- Mix the flour and hot water in another bowl. Then add 1 tablespoon egg shell powder and mix into a thick paste.
- Add a drop or two of food coloring for colored chalk. If you want white chalk do not add anything.
- Shape the paste into chalk sticks or press into soap molds for fun shapes. If making chalk sticks roll the sticks up tightly in a paper towel.
- Let your chalk dry for 3 days.
12. As a laundry whitener:
- Some say that if you toss some shells in a mesh bag in your laundry, the gray tint to your whites will disappear.
13. Eggshell candles:
- Carefully crack the shells in half.
- Fill each half with beeswax.
- Insert a wick.
- Let the wax set.
- Remove the egg shell.
For most eggshell uses, it is better to make sure they are clean and free from bacteria. If you don’t wash the eggs thoroughly before using, bake the shells at 150 degrees Fahrenheit on a cookie sheet for about 10 minutes.