101 (or so) Other Uses for a Bandana

Cowboys originally wore bandanas because they served a bunch of different purposes. You can see the possibilities from the list we’ve assembled. Aside from just helping you LOOK like a cowboy, there’s got to be at least one in this list that you can identify with. Note that some of them are incompatible with others, or at least be careful in what order you use them.

      On the cattle drive or trail:

    • A wind/dust mask
    • Hobble a pack animal
    • Makeshift bridle
    • Soak in water and use as a neckband to keep cool
    • Whisk away pestering insects
    • Tuck under back of hat to keep sun off
    • A backpacking strainer for pasta
    • Pre-filter water
    • Gather wild blueberries in it
    • Mark territory in the woods
    • As a blindfold to sleep past dawn
    • Pad shoulders when carrying a load
    • To tie extra stuff to a backpack
    • Trail marker
    • Cover your face for a daytime nap
    • Tie together and twist for a rope
    • Hang on a guy line to keep people from tripping
    • Emergency repair for a strap on a pack
    • Dry feet after fording a stream
    • Plug nose after encountering a skunk
    • Occupied sign on an outhouse
    • To check wind direction
    • Tie around head to keep hairpiece from blowing down the trail
    • All-terrain sitting cloth
    • Sending smoke signals
    • Distract a charging animal

      Around town:

    • Flag a passing motorist
    • Flag down a taxi
    • Cheer at a parade or sporting event
    • Tie to the car antenna for easy spotting
    • Tie to luggage for easy spotting

      Apparel and Accessories:

    • Scarf or neckerchief
    • Handkerchief
    • Headband
    • Tie together for a belt
    • Add a piece of cord for a halter-top
    • Emergency swim trunks, two for a bikini
    • Makeshift hat (knot at each corner)
    • Makeshift brassiere
    • To fill a brassiere
    • Mask for robbing stagecoaches and banks
    • Earmuffs
    • Watch fob
    • Hatband
    • Key chain
    • Pocket protector
    • Hobo pack
    • Apron
    • Skimpy negligee
    • Shine shoes
    • A patch for tired pants
    • Tuck in chest pocket of tux for a rustic look

      Sports and Games:

    • To lead a line dance
    • Blindfold for Pin the Tail on the Donkey
    • Tie skis together to carry
    • Kite tail
    • For magic tricks
    • A flag for capture the flag
    • Slingshot [yeah, this one mystifies us too]
    • To wipe a muddy Frisbee after a day of “mudultimate”
    • A net to gather minnows for bait
    • Mark home base line
    • Relay baton
    • To wipe sweaty hands when the chalk bag is empty
    • Parachute for Barbie or Ken
    • Stick two ends through skydiving helmet to have bunny ears on the way down

      In the kitchen:

    • Plug sink drain
    • Bib or lap napkin
    • Placemat or tablecloth
    • Open a stuck jar
    • Cover exposed food
    • Coffee filter or tea strainer
    • Salad spinner
    • Potholder
    • Scrub dishes
    • Moisten and wrap biscuits, pancakes to keep from going stale
    • Polish fruit

      Around the House:

    • Wipe a tear
    • Blow a nose
    • Muffle a sneeze or cover a cough
    • Clean eyeglasses
    • Bookmark
    • Cover a book
    • Suppress a rattle
    • To distinguish twins, triplets
    • Wrap a gift
    • Give as a gift
    • Dog collar
    • Muzzle a dog
    • Muzzle a mother-in-law
    • Fill with catnip
    • Cat cape
    • Muffler for alarm clock
    • Disguise your voice on the phone
    • Doll blanket
    • Make into a doll
    • Fly swatter
    • Garden hose repair
    • To handle a hot radiator cap or check the oil
    • Replacement gas cap
    • Car window shade
    • Decorate the Christmas tree
    • Stuff to make a pillow
    • Polish the car
    • Blanket for the Chihuahua

      Emergency and Self Defense:

    • As a sling
    • Wrap a sprained ankle or wrist
    • To secure a splint on a broken arm or leg
    • Warning flag
    • Surrender flag (make sure it’s white)
    • Emergency diaper
    • Wrap around snow or ice for an ice pack
    • As a garrote to capture the “bad guys”
    • As handcuffs to tie up the “bad guys”

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