13 Things You Didn't Know You Can Wash in the Dishwasher

Surprise! You Can Wash These Items in a Dishwasher


Just because that machine in your kitchen is called a dishwasher, it doesn't mean that it can't wash a lot more than cups and plates! Make life easier for yourself by loading these other household items into your dishwasher the next time you need them safely cleaned and sanitized.

Rubber Shoes


Rubber shoes like flip flops and rain boots can skip the laundry machine with your sneakers and instead go safely into the dishwasher. Pro tip: put your flip flops on the top rack and rubber boots on the bottom facing down.



It's essential to sterilize your hair and makeup brushes at least every few months in order to prevent nasty bacteria from building up, and while you could clean them by hand, it's far easier to wash them via the silverware holder of your dishwasher. Be sure to put the cycle on low heat, as high heat might melt the glue off of the makeup brushes.

Toys of All Kinds


Whether it's pet toys that see a lot of slobber or, ahem, personal, adult toys, any kind of plastic, non-battery operated toy should be safe to load into the dishwasher for sanitizing. Make sure you thoroughly dry your toys afterwards; leftover water might rust any metal parts.

Toiletry Bags or Cases


If you travel frequently and keep your beauty essentials in a small toiletry bag or case, at some point, you will have to deal with a toothpaste tube or makeup bottle exploding inside of it. Not to fear! Remove all of the items and place your nylon or plastic toiletry case on the top shelf of the dishwasher. It will look like new in no time.

Kitchen Sponges


Don't forget to clean the items you use to clean with! While there are several ways to sterilize a kitchen sponge, we prefer popping a dirty sponge alongside the glasses in the top rack of our dishwasher right before we're about to run a load.

Personal Hygiene Items


Quick: when is the last time you cleaned your toothbrush, razor, or tweezers? If you can't remember and you don't use disposable sets, you should wash these in the silverware holder in your dishwasher, stat! Make sure to pat metal tweezers dry to prevent rusting.



Loofahs are strange objects. You use them to clean your body on a daily basis, but unlike a wash cloth, there's no obvious way to get them clean. Fortunately, a dishwasher is the perfect solution! Wash your loofah regularly in the top rack, and you'll get it clean better than if you put in with your laundry.

Refrigerator Drawers


Hate grimy refrigerator drawers with their weird smells and caked-on crumbs? Us too. If your drawers can fit into the bottom rack of your dishwasher, load them in for a much faster deep cleaning than if you did it yourself by hand.

Bathroom Soap Dishes


Tough soap scum is no sweat for your dishwasher. To prevent suds from forming, scrape off any excess soap first.



If you're like us, you've no doubt dropped your keys on the floor more than a few times. Get these bad boys sanitized by utilizing any extra space in your silverware holder the next time you run a load of dishes. (Although you should probably pass on cleaning any keys that are chipped.)



Bizarre but true! The next time you're planning on making a batch of mashed taters, wash your potatoes first in the top rack of your dishwasher and run them through a cycle without soap. Sadly, you will still have to peel them by hand, as your dishwasher will not do that for you.

Throw Pillows


Not only can you wash a throw pillow in the dishwasher, but it won't get as twisted as it would washing it with your laundry. Make sure that the pillow fits in the top rack, remove any covers or pillowcases, and use Borax instead of dish or laundry soap in the dispenser. And, voilà! Good as new.

Small Trash Cans


If the garbage can fits, you must acquit (yourself of washing it by hand)! A small-sized trash can often ends up with coffee grounds and other spillage at the bottom, and the dishwasher is the perfect way to make it look brand new again. Don't forget to wash your dustpan too.

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13 Things You Didn't Know You Can Wash in the Dishwasher