Products that absorb moisture aren't just limited to those that clean up spills and messes around the house. There are an assortment of consumer products also available for other moisture-absorbing purposes, for outdoor and indoor use.
Sponges are common kitchen tools that wipe moisture off of countertops, clean up spills and wipe down dishes. The sponge absorbs water, which you can then squeeze back out over the sink when the job is done. They're also appealing to consumers because they're inexpensive, and, unlike other kitchen cleaning supplies, can be used many times before being thrown away. However, one disadvantage of kitchen sponges is that they can also trap bacteria. This can make users sick.
Cat litter is used in litter boxes and trays to absorb moisture from cat waste, and it also has applications for other spills, such as automotive fluids on your driveway, street or garage floor. Litters were formerly made of sands, but most are currently made from clay minerals. Clays work better to absorb moisture, while preventing odors. A common clay used in litters is bentonite clay. The advantage of this litter variety is that when areas become moist, it clumps together. This makes it easier to clean, and it doesn't require changing as often as traditional clay-based litters.
Polymer gels are water-absorbing non-toxic products that retain soil additives. They're used in gardening applications and act like sponges in soil by absorbing water and then releasing it so that it's available to the plant over time. These gels are tiny and look similar to beads, but when they fill with water, they expand up to 50 percent of their initial size. They reduce the frequency with which plants need watering and also absorb things like liquid fertilizer to ensure plants stay healthy for longer.
Unlike many household products that are used to absorb water after it causes damage or messes, dehumidifiers absorb water before it becomes a problem. They work by absorbing water from the air, which prevents mold from forming and aids those who suffer from allergies. Dehumidifiers draw air to the unit with a fan, then cool it so excess moisture condenses into each unit's removable container. Air then returns to the room drier than it was before.