As much as we like to think that we’re safe, there’s no telling when or if the fabled apocalypse will come. But, whether it’s brought about by nuclear warfare or zombies, you’ll want to be prepared when the world finally ends!

After all, there’s no telling what kind of supplies you’ll have available, or who you’ll be able to rely upon. You may no longer be able to buy simple things like food and candles, and even your local dentist may have joined an evil leather-clad biker gang.

Here are 21 genius hacks to help you survive that fateful day. And even if human civilization never faces its downfall, you’ll be happy to have learned these new skills!

1. Crayons can be lit for about 30 minutes if you run out of candles. Of course, crayons would also be a good thing to have around in general in case the grid gets shut down and you and your kids can no longer play video games.

1-apocalyptic-hacksThe Art Junction

2. Baking soda can be used to make toothpaste! Even in the midst of Armageddon, you still have to make sure that your oral hygiene is well taken care of. Who knows when you’ll ever be able see a dentist again!

2-apocalypse-hacksDIY Natural

3. Doritos and Cheetos burn pretty easily if you need to start a fire quickly. Granted, you can also eat them, but during the apocalypse you’d be much better off consuming something more nutritious.

3-apocalypse-hacksreddit / u/fischerkidd

4. Vaseline and dryer lint make great fire starters too! Always keep flammable objects on hand in a post-apocalyptic wasteland. It’s easy to forget how important heat is, both to keep your body warm and to cook.

4-apocalypse-hacksWillow Haven Outdoor

5. Now that you have something to start the fire with, you can use a soda can as a makeshift stove. That’s good, because you may not be able to start an ordinary campfire everywhere. Just don’t forget to check expiration dates!5-apocalypse-hacks


6. Use a plastic sheet to capture much-needed water. Clean, accessible water may not be available after the world falls apart, so even a small amount of water can literally be a life saver if you think ahead.


7. Got a lemon and some coins? Use them to generate electricity! This is going to be absolutely vital during the end of days. One could imagine how helpful even the slightest bit of electricity might be in such a situation.

7-apocalypse hacksFrenzy / Instructables

8. Treat blisters with duct tape, especially if the blisters prevent you from running away in an emergency. Whether you’re being chased by zombies, biblical demons, or Mad Max – style gangs, you can’t afford even the most minor injury!


9. If you’re desperate for something that’s stuck in a stubborn jar, duct tape can help. In other words, if you don’t currently have any duct tape, you should definitely invest in some as soon as possible just in case.

9-apocalypse-hacksu/opi8 / Reddit

10. Use branches and a tarp to build a raft. It’s entirely within the realm of possibility that zombies wouldn’t be able to swim, so this could be a great way to move away from them and get to the next safe spot!

10-apocalypse-hacksHow To Survive It

11. You’re going to want to make the best of the daylight you have, so use your fingers as a guide. It’s important to remember that you won’t necessarily have a clock at some point, and you certainly won’t be able to look at your phone.

11-apocalypse-hacksreddit / u/parahillObjective

12. Need a compass? Just use an ordinary wristwatch. Similarly, if you, like many other people these days, still don’t know how to use a compass, it would definitely be in your best interest to learn now!


13. Long-handled garden tools can be used to make walking sticks… or weapons. Whatever situation you find yourself in during the end times, one or both of these functions will help you to survive in the wilderness.

12-apocalypse-hacksDan’s Depot

14. Large juice cans may generate even more heat than a soda can. These big cans aren’t quite as common, but they’re certainly worth getting your hands on just in case that terrible day finally comes.

14-apocalypse-hacksLog Cabin Cooking

15. Make a lighter out of a battery and steel wool. Even with all of the skills that you’ve learned here, there are few easier ways to start a fire than with a good old fashioned lighter, so make one of your own now!

15-apocalypse-hacksCreating Wonder

16. If trees survive the apocalypse, make use of the leaves as much as you can! Here, you can see that they can be used as a sort of makeshift bandaid in case you’re in the kind of situation where you can’t get the real deal.

16-apocaylpse-hacksWillow Haven Outdoor

17. You’ll need a dust mask if the post-apocalyptic air is as bad as pop culture makes it out to be. Try a bra cup. It may look silly, but it’s a heck of a lot better than suffocating to death from all the toxicity in the atmosphere!

17-apocaylpse-hacksCreek Stewart / Outside Online

18. Use soda cans to open a padlock. It takes a little time and effort, but it works! When it all comes down to the wire, concepts of privacy and ownership might completely break down when we’re desperate to survive.

18-apocalypse-hacksIt’s Tactical

19. Keep your first-aid supplies in sturdy Altoid tins. These are actually much stronger and secure than you may give them credit for, and besides, losing medical provisions can spell disaster for any band of survivors.

19-apocalypse-hacksPopper And Mimi

20. Dental floss doubles as a multipurpose snare. If the water is still clean enough for fish to live in it, for example, they’re great for fishing. Just don’t forget to save some for your own teeth while you’re at it!


21. You can use salt water to treat mosquito bites, other itches, or for plenty of other things! Frankly, you’re going to want to keep a good amount of salt with you in general. It’s used for much more than just food!


If you and a small band of survivors ever find yourselves stuck in an old abandoned mall or supermarket with zombies approaching, you’ll be glad that you know how to stay alive. Of course, if the world doesn’t end tomorrow, it’ll still be nice to have these tips on hand!

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