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Travel blogger shares game-changing packing tip using old silica bead packets: 'Do not throw these away'

"A travel hack I've actually never heard before!"

"A travel hack I've actually never heard before!"

Photo Credit: TikTok

It turns out silica gel packets aren't useless after all.

The small pouches that often end up in the trash can be repurposed in a number of ways, and a travel expert shared how.

The scoop

Silica gel packets are included with everything from shoes and cameras to dried fruit and vitamins. But when you recycle that shipping box, don't toss them out.

@patricejwill Silica gel packs have a ton of uses, especially when traveling. They're great at absorbing moisture. Throw a few in your suitcase and they can even help dry your phone out if it gets wet {do not put your phone in rice 🙅🏾‍♀️🤦🏽‍♀️} #travelhacks #travelpackingtips #packinghacks #travelwriterslife ♬ original sound - Patrice | travel & fashion

"Do not throw these away," Patrice (@patricejwill), a travel and fashion TikToker, said. "These are natural deodorizers, and they remove moisture."

While packing for a trip, she threw a handful in her suitcase, saying they come in handy if your bathing suit is wet and can save your phone in a pinch.

How it's helping

As Patrice pointed out, silica is a drying agent, so it keeps things fresh and free of mold and odors.

Silica gel packets can absorb up to 40% of their weight in moisture, according to Discover magazine. The package and tiny sponge-like pellets inside are choking hazards — and it should be noted other desiccants can be toxic. They can contribute unnecessary pollution, but they are so useful that NASA has deployed an aerogel form of the desiccant in its Mars rover.

As for repurposing the packets that come with your consumer goods, you can put them almost anywhere. Another social media user shared 15 uses for them, including in your gym bag, diaper bag, or shoes.

This can help you save money by keeping your possessions in good shape for longer, and it will keep the plastic pellets out of our waterways.

What everyone's saying

The advice was roundly applauded, with a couple of TikTokers saying they always had desiccants on hand.

"They saved my phone on a trip!" another noted. "Great tip!"

Patrice responded: "Yup! Same for me when I was in St. John and I placed my phone in my bag and something sticky got in the port."

"A travel hack I've actually never heard before!" another user wrote. "Thank you!"

Someone else added: "They're also great for your toolbox! They keep your tools from getting any tiny little rust spots."

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