25 Genius Uses for Old Socks

Admit it- you’re holding on to a pair (or many pairs) of old socks that have a hole or stretched out elastic because you just hate to throw them away. If you’re the frugal living type, you probably hate tossing things out when you just know that they could be used for something else. There are lots of uses for old socks so if you’ve got a few stretched or holey pairs, read on.

Now there’s definitely a difference between being resourceful and finding new uses for items and simply hoarding things with the idea that you’ll find a use for them eventually. Don’t hang on to stuff just in case. If your old socks are in pretty rough shape, just toss them out. However, if it’s a pair with a small hole or stretched out elastic at the ankles, you can give them a new purpose before chucking them in the trash.

The good news is that you can feel ok about hanging on to your holey old hosiery- check out these genius uses for old socks:

1) Duster

This one’s almost a no-brainer since any old piece of fabric makes for a good cleaning & dusting rag. Simply slip the old sock over your hand and start dusting! It’s a perfect way to dust fan blades, baseboards, window blinds, and other tough to reach spaces.

2) Whiteboard eraser

Every year my daughter’s teachers ask parents to send in whiteboard erasers- specifically, old socks! It’s a great frugal option that saves both parents and teachers money. So if you have school-aged children, be sure to hang on to those old socks before tossing them out.

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3) Door draft stopper

Lower your heating costs in the winter by keeping drafts out. A DIY door draft stopper is one of the best uses for old socks that can save you money! Check out this easy tutorial on how to make your own.

4) Cleaning rags

You can never have too many cleaning rags. Cut up socks to use for all kinds of cleaning, car repairs, etc. You won’t have to wash them and reuse them either, you can toss these dirty rags out without worry.

5) Plant stakes

Cut old socks up into strips and use them to secure plants in pots or in the garden. Perfect for tomato stakes, tall houseplants that need a little support, and more.

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6) DIY muscle soother/heating pad

Soothe sore muscles for free. Fill up an old sock with rice, oatmeal, or dry beans. You can warm it up in the microwave and then use it as a heating pad. Check out this easy to follow DIY.

7) Drawer sachetsĀ 

Freshen up your clothing drawers with homemade sachets. You can add potpourri, essential oils, laundry deodorizers, and more. Wellness Mama has great tips on which essential oils to use.

8) DIY gnomes

Turn a colorful sock into an adorable gnome! This would be a great piece of Christmas or winter decor and could also be given as a handmade gift. See this DIY post for tons of great ideas on how to make a creative and cute gnome.

9) Sock puppets for kids

Get out the craft stash and let the kids have fun creating their own sock puppets. This is a great activity to keep the kids entertained while allowing them to be crafty and creative.

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10) Applying furniture stain

Use old socks as a handy mitt for applying furniture stain. This makes it easy to apply and you can just toss it away once you’re done.

11) Cord organizer

Organize junk drawers or cluttered cabinets by using old socks as storage pouches. This is a great way to organize cords and wires, keeping them from tangling and getting lost in a drawer.

12) Use for packing

Packing away breakables or holiday decor? Use socks as a soft buffer when packing items for a move or for storage. This is a great way to save money on styrofoam, air pouches, tissue paper, etc.

13) Stuffing for pillows/crafts

Polyester and cotton stuffing for pillows and crafts can be expensive. Hold on to old socks and use them as extra stuffing for fluffy DIYs, pillows, and more. Repair a torn stuffed animal or even a torn cushion by filling it in with socks.

14) Make a sock bun

Pretty up your hairdo by making a sock bun. Just be sure that the old socks you use for this are freshly washed!

15) Protect your cell phone

Slip your cell phone into an old sock to keep it protected. This is also a good way to find your phone if it’s always getting lost in the bottom of your bag it backpack.

16) Sunglasses case

Use a soft old sock as a sunglasses case to protect them from scratches and keep them secure in your bag.

17) Shoe shining rag

Keep your dress shoes looking their best by using an old sock as a shoe shining rag.

18) Floor protector when moving furniture

Moving furniture around on hardwood or laminate floors? Protect them by slipping old socks over the feet of the furniture.

19) Doll clothes

Do you have sewing skills? Put them to good use by making cute doll clothing for Barbies or American Girl dolls.

20) Fingerless gloves/ wrist warmers

Keep your hands and wrists warm with a homemade pair of fingerless gloves.

21) Cat toys- Uses for old socks your pets will appreciate!

Make your own cat toys out of old socks. You can add catnip or crinkly paper, too.

22) Braided dog toy

This is a quick DIY that you can do with several old socks. Tightly braid them together, tie off the ends, and get ready for a game for fetch!

23) Dryer balls from wool socks

Use old wool socks to make your own dryer balls. It helps cut down on the drying time and can keep your clothes and linens from getting too tangled up in the dryer.

24) Mug cozy

Dress up your mug and keep your coffee or tea extra warm with a crafty mug cozy. This can also make a great homemade gift for any occasion.

25) Swiffer replacement

Out of replacement pads to keep your floors clean? Slip an old sock on to your duster and get to swiffering!

Socks that are stretched out, missing their match, or have a hole or two can still be useful. Put your frugal skills to work and try any of these brilliant uses for old socks. Repurpose what may seem like trash into something that can help you around the home. Once it’s ready to toss, you can feel good about knowing that you made the most out of that old sock!