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Olive oil for cleaning grease from hands

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Olive oil for cleaning grease from hands

Old 05-01-21, 02:36 PM
  #1  
randallr
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Olive oil for cleaning grease from hands

Today I did some work that got chain grease on my hands. As I have done for 50 years after working on bikes and cars, I started to reach for some detergent to wash it off. Then, there on the sideboard at the sink, I saw the olive oil I use on salads. My chemistry training from 45 years ago came to mind: "like dissolves like". I put a teaspoon of olive oil on and rubbed a bit and -bingo- clean hands. No elbow grease, no brushes, just grease gone on a paper towel. The olive oil came off with some really mild hand soap.

I'm feeling a little abashed that only now did this idea ever occur to me. Any cooking oil would probably do the same. Really easy on the skin.
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Old 05-01-21, 03:31 PM
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Other oil like stuff works well to. Fast food joints have packets of Mayo. Sun tan lotion. Skin moistener like Lubriderm work. Most kitchen oils do. WD40. Car oil. Of course if one doesn't like the oily residue then wash, after getting off the grime, with soap. Andy
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Old 05-01-21, 04:10 PM
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A little vegetable oil will also remove the sticky residue from stickers and such.
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Old 05-01-21, 05:35 PM
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Vegetable oil would be cheaper than olive oil.
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Old 05-01-21, 05:41 PM
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I've always used olive oil to remove oil based paint from my hands. Never thought of trying it on grease. No vegetable oil for me. All my Italian ancestors will haunt me.
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Old 05-01-21, 07:25 PM
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In the day, my auto shop teacher taught us to pack the wheel bearings as the last step in a brake job. The wheel bearing grease removed all the grime from the brake dust.
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Old 05-01-21, 07:50 PM
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Originally Posted by Chuck M View Post
In the day, my auto shop teacher taught us to pack the wheel bearings as the last step in a brake job. The wheel bearing grease removed all the grime from the brake dust.
Hopefully that grime didn't end up in the wheel bearings... Andy
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Old 05-01-21, 10:06 PM
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In the 70s, my grandpa taught me to clean my filthy greasy hands with clean motor oil. He was born in 1896 and was a mechanic for the county highway department until he retired in about 1965 or so.

Aaaaannnnnyyyyyway..... I actually did that for a while in the 70s and 80s then follow with dish soap. Dish soap works well alone too, if you don't have a real hand cleaner - like Go-Jo or any of the commonly available citrus hand cleaners (which is what I use now). I often use Nivea, Eucerin or other fairly thick/substantial hand creams to get petro-stink off my hands if necessary because they're around the house.

Olive oil or vegetable oil? Never crossed my mind. I'd just use dish soap.
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Old 05-02-21, 02:13 AM
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On a similar note:
I so enjoy those times when the chores of being a home owner lines up with first some painting or mechanics and then some tile work.
Although the grout does dry your skin out, it does get just about anything off.
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Old 05-02-21, 03:01 PM
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Good memory: "like dissolves like" is a great mnemonic for physical chemistry (and has the added advantage of being true).

I do remember hearing about machine and/or paint shop guys that would use gasoline to cut the grease or paint. Makes one wonder how many of 'em succumbed early.
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Old 05-02-21, 07:29 PM
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i often use food oils they work great are cheap and make my hands silky smooth.
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Old 05-02-21, 09:34 PM
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Originally Posted by WizardOfBoz View Post
Good memory: "like dissolves like" is a great mnemonic for physical chemistry (and has the added advantage of being true).
Have you tested this theory with Gorilla Glue?
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Old 05-02-21, 10:02 PM
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I stick with Worx Natural Hand Cleaner.


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Old 05-03-21, 12:52 AM
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So will wd-40, or spit.
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Old 05-03-21, 09:16 AM
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A little Go-Jo goes a long way. Got a jug with pump dispenser that will probably outlast me. I use just a tiny amount, and it does a fantastic job.
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Old 05-03-21, 11:38 AM
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Old 05-03-21, 12:03 PM
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We use to use olive oil to clean the tar off our feet when the beaches were full of it. It was effective and environmentily friendly.
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Old 05-03-21, 12:13 PM
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Originally Posted by Andrew R Stewart View Post
Hopefully that grime didn't end up in the wheel bearings... Andy
That was my thought. Sounds like you're going to contaminate the bearing grease.
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Old 05-03-21, 12:52 PM
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I would focus on some food grade grease or oil and not add toxic oils to my skin like motor oil. I assume when your skin is dry, it will soak in even more of what you put on.

Hand creme works. I have some combination of hand creme and sand or some other grit. That gets off grease, and also is abrasive to get thicker stuff off. It is called fast orange hand cleaner at Walmart.
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Old 05-03-21, 07:08 PM
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Originally Posted by JanMM View Post
Vegetable oil would be cheaper than olive oil.
Yup. I regularly use the cheap vegetable oil on my hands to loosen grease or oil paint. Then wash with regular soap.
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Old 05-04-21, 10:10 AM
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Almost forgot.
Olive oil. Great to remove those chainring tattoos.
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Old 05-04-21, 10:13 AM
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In case you have trouble getting dirty grease from under your fingernails, that's not dirt, it's "French tips" I had to look at this picture a couple of times to figure out it was painted on.

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Old 05-04-21, 09:35 PM
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Originally Posted by JanMM View Post
Vegetable oil would be cheaper than olive oil.
You peasant. I have a small olive grove in Tuscany that has been around for centuries that uses only virgins to hand squeeze each individual olive to extract the the finest extra virgin olive oil just for washing my hands. They come to me in special 24k diamond bottles.

The olive oil or veg oil trick is actually quite a good one, I will have to try it when my Phil Wood Hand cleaner runs out which won't be for a while.
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Old 05-05-21, 05:43 PM
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Another thought.

If I’m using something like dish soap. Soap first. Before the hands get wet get the soap and scrub first.

Oil would probably be the same way.
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Old 05-05-21, 06:03 PM
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Interesting, I never heard of using olive or vegetable oil to clean hands. I just bought a 1/2 gallon pump dispenser of Fast Orange hand cleaner for $6.50 delivered from Amazon. Lot cheaper than a 1/2 gallon of olive oil.
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