Finding ways to reduce waste is an important part of living sustainably. One easy way to do this is to repurpose items you already have at home, giving them a new life and keeping them out of landfills. An old toothbrush is a perfect candidate for repurposing into a handy back scratcher. With just a few simple materials, I transformed my worn-out toothbrush into a eco-friendly personal grooming tool that feels great on an itchy back.
Gather Your Materials
Repurposing a toothbrush doesn’t require any fancy tools or supplies. I simply gathered:
Old toothbrush – Make sure to pick one with soft, flexible bristles. Hard bristles could be unpleasant on sensitive skin.
Sandpaper – A small piece of fine grit sandpaper is needed to smooth down the bristle end.
Hot glue gun – This will be used to adhere a handle to the non-bristle end.
Glue stick – Helpful for attaching any decorative elements like ribbons or pom poms.
Decorative items (optional) – Things like ribbons, fabric scraps, pom poms, etc can be used to jazz up your back scratcher.
And that’s it! With just these basic craft supplies, I was ready to get started on my project.
Sand Down the Bristle End
The first step is to blunt the bristle end of the toothbrush so it won’t be too abrasive on skin. I used a piece of 220 grit sandpaper for this.
Holding the non-bristle end of the toothbrush, I sanded the bristles in a circular motion. I applied light pressure and sanded for 2-3 minutes until the bristles were smooth and no longer sharp.
Be sure not to over-sand or you may weaken the bristles. The goal is to remove any harsh edges while keeping the bristles flexible.
Attach a Handle
With the bristle end smoothed out, I was ready to add a handle so the toothbrush is easy to grip.
I chose a wooden craft stick as my handle, but you could use a popsicle stick, chopstick, ruler, or any narrow object.
Applying a generous amount of hot glue to the non-bristle end of the toothbrush, I attached the craft stick. I held it in place for 30 seconds as the glue dried.
The handle should be securely glued on and feel sturdy. At this point, the functional repurposed back scratcher was ready!
Add Decorative Touches (Optional)
If desired, you can jazz up your recycled back scratcher with some decorative elements using a glue stick.
I wrapped colorful ribbons around the handle and bristle end for a pop of color. Pom poms can be glued on for a festive flair. If it’s a gift, you could add a gift tag with a message.
Get creative with fabric scraps, stickers, lace, marker doodles – anything to make it look cute!
Use Your Upcycled Toothbrush Back Scratcher
And that’s it – a useful DIY back scratcher made from a toothbrush destined for the landfill!
To use it, simply hold the handle and scratch those hard to reach spots on your back. The bristles should provide satisfying relief without being too abrasive.
When storing, keep the bristle end clean and dry to prevent buildup and bacterial growth.
Upcycling an old toothbrush took just a few minutes and makes a world of difference for my skin. I love having this handy eco-friendly grooming tool while also keeping plastic waste out of oceans and landfills.
Give it a try with your worn out toothbrushes. With a little creativity, you can repurpose all sorts of everyday items to reduce your environmental footprint. What will you upcycle next?