Tea is a beverage that's been enjoyed for quite some time. An old story tells of a servant boiling water for Chinese Emperor Shen Nung in 2737 B.C. when a gust of wind left a few tea leaves in the pot. Shen Nung was reportedly pleased with the inadvertent concoction and so began the practice of drinking tea, says the UK Tea & Infusions Association. Though it's difficult to speak on the legitimacy of this tale, it's perhaps the most common origin story out there.
For quite a while, tea was primarily ingested for medicinal purposes, Mighty Leaf states. It wasn't until the Tang dynasty (618-907 A.D.) that people began drinking tea habitually and it wasn't until the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644) that people prepared tea the way most of us do today, by steeping it. Eventually, tea spread across the globe, reaching England during the 17th century and America shortly after.

Today, tea is the second-most-consumed beverage on the planet behind water, according to National Geographic. Thanks to the abundance of variety and the numerous purported health benefits, people have been jumping on the tea bandwagon like crazy. We certainly can't blame them.

While tea is great to drink, did you know there are a number of ways to repurpose used tea bags? In January, The Savings Experiment released a video demonstrating a number of ways to reuse tea bags around the house. You may have come across some of these tips, but our guess is that you might learn a thing or two from the video. 

Tea is a great deodorizer and thus can be used to freshen up an old pair of shoes or the inside of the fridge, where a number of odors linger. Stick a tea bag in your favorite pair of shoes overnight and see if that makes a difference. Similarly, place a few used tea bags in a container and stick it in the back of the fridge. That should help freshen things up a bit. 

Perhaps the most intriguing demonstration in the video is a handy kitchen-cleaning tip. If you find your sink full of dirty dishes at the end of the night and you don't plan on attacking them until morning, throw in a tea bag or two — but ensure that the dishes are soaking in water. The tannins in the tea will help break down grease and food stains on your dishes, making them significantly easier to clean come morning time, Organic Authority explains. This tip is especially handy when you have pots and pans caked with residue that doesn't seem eager to come off. Though it's best to tackle dishes sooner rather than later, this isn't always a viable option — or a favored one.

Used tea bags can also be applied to sensitive areas on your skin, like sunburns, to soothe pain and reduce redness. In the same vein, The Savings Experiment says you can rub a damp tea bag on the dark circles under your eyes to reduce swelling.  

Not only are these tips great for keeping your house fresh and your kitchen clean, they also might help you save a bit of money. After all, that's what the folks at The Savings Experiment are all about — "simple and easy-to-execute money saving tips to consumers across the web." 

So next time you notice your fridge smelling funky or your sink full of dirty pots and pans, have a cup of tea. Then, grab the tea bag and put it to use. You may never look at tea the same again.