HELOISE: Ironing out a plastic mess

Dear Heloise: I was trying to iron on a patch to a plastic fabric, but it scorched my iron. I was wondering how to clean my iron and get the melted plastic off of it? Thank you.

Cindy, via e-mail

The owners manual for your iron, if you still have it, will have cleaning instructions. If not, our friend vinegar can be used to remove the brown gunk from the bottom of your iron. First make sure that the iron is cold, then wipe with a cloth soaked in diluted white vinegar. Repeat if necessary. Want more great uses for vinegar? All you have to do is send $5 and a long, self-addressed, stamped (61 cents) envelope to: Heloise/Vinegar, P.O. Box 795001, San Antonio, TX 78279-5001. To help make most rice (not instant or quick-cooking) fluffy, add 1 teaspoon of vinegar to the cooking water. White, apple cider or rice vinegar works just fine.


Dear Heloise: When I put my holiday lights away, I usually try to use the original box. When that is no longer an option, I take children’s clothes hangers and wrap the lights around them. They have little hooks in the corners to hold the first light and the plug.

C.R. in New Jersey

Great hint, C.R. And here’s another suggestion from Marie H. in Sublimity, Ore.:

“Dear Heloise: We buy apples packed in clear plastic containers. I use the empty containers to store holiday ornaments. The ornaments are held individually in them and can be stacked nicely, and one can see at a glance what is packed inside. “


Dear Heloise: For a quick touch-up to remove the stubble on your legs without the mess of gels, soap and water, etc., apply a little of any inexpensive hand or body lotion to the shaving area. Not much is needed — just enough to make the leg slippery. Use a dry razor and, when finished, rub in excess lotion.

Lois Sparks in Penrose, Colo.

Dear Heloise: On my wash day, I have four loads. I line up the cups (detergent or softener caps — Heloise), four for detergent and four for softener. That way, when my husband decides to be helpful, everything is all set out for him. Also, it saves me time.

Nancy Davidson in California

Dear Heloise: I find that when I try to brush or comb my hair in the winter, it gets frizzy and won’t lie down, so I take a dryer sheet and run it over my hair, and that makes it lie down.

A Reader, via e-mail

Dear Readers: Have you taken a close look at your keyboard lately? It can get pretty dirty, especially if you use it all day! To clean it, first unplug it, and then turn it upside down. Gently tap to loosen food and other debris. Wipe keys with a microfiber cloth or alcohol-based wipe.


Send a money-saving or timesaving hint to Heloise, P.O. Box 795000, San Antonio, TX 78279-5000, fax it to 210-HELOISE or e-mail it to Heloise@Heloise.com.

King Features Syndicate