Baking soda, or sodium bicarbonate, is a staple in many homes for baking and cleaning purposes. However, the uses of this household product do not stop there! Most people are not taking full advantage of all it has to offer.
In its simplest description, baking soda helps regulate pH. If it mixes with either an acid or an alkaline substance it has a neutralizing effect on it. It is perfect for neutralizing acidic odors and maintaining a neutral pH. It also has a gentle abrasive ability to help scrub. It deodorizes, neutralizes, and cleans all without the toxic mess of most commercial products.
There are literally countless ways you can utilize it around your household. It even has various medicinal uses too! Baking soda is extremely versatile, gentle, green and best of all inexpensive. Below are just some of the top uses we have highlighted in this article.
1. Deodorize just about anything
This product works as a natural deodorizer because it is able to balance the pH levels. It is able to buffer and neutralize strong acidic substances as well as stabilize basic solutions. This neutralizing effect is what helps eliminate odors. You can use it throughout your house and even your car, to help eliminate unwanted odors!
- Refrigerator: place an opened box in the back of your fridge.
- Trash bin: sprinkle a little bit in the bottom of the garbage bag
- Shoes: sprinkle a little inside your shoe and let it sit overnight.
- Air freshener: mix one teaspoon of baking soda with 8 ounces of water and put into a spray bottle.
There are two different ways you can use it as a shampoo. First, pour your shampoo into your hand as normal, but before you start shampooing, sprinkle some baking soda into the shampoo. This should help remove any excess from your scalp and maximize the efficiency of your shampoo.
Second, you can use no-poo shampoo. This method you replace your current shampoo with baking soda. This method should not be used daily, instead try using it once a week and just rinsing your hair with water the other days. Start by mixing 1 tablespoon with 1 cup of water. Gently massage the mixture into your scalp and rinse like normal. Follow this up with a mixture of 1 tablespoon of apple cider vinegar and one cup of water to use as a conditioner rinse. This technique is used to balance the pH level of your scalp and give your hair a healthier, natural look. (One note is that your hair will feel oily, that is just your scalps natural oil, during the first week or two doing this. If your scalp experiences any itching during this time you can try adding a drop of tea tree oil to help).
Sodium bicarbonate can help neutralize stomach acid. Mix 1 to 2 teaspoons of it with one 8 ounce glass of water and drink. The alkaline properties of sodium bicarbonate help neutralize your stomach acid and give you relief from heartburn.
4. Teeth whitener
It has been used by some as a replacement for toothpaste, since it balances acid in the mouth. However, it can be too abrasive for your teeth and while it may clean your teeth and mouth, it may harm the enamel that protects your teeth. However, using it on occasion as a teeth whitener does not come with the same concerns. The easiest way to whiten your teeth using baking soda is to mix ½ teaspoon of it with ½ teaspoon of water to make a paste. Dip a clean toothbrush into the paste and brush as normal, for 2 minutes. Thoroughly rinse your mouth once you are done brushing and repeat this every 3 to 4 days until you achieve your desired whiteness.
5. Detox bath
A detox bath is a perfect way to relax your muscles and detoxify your body of unwanted toxins. Use sodium bicarbonate for a detox bath by filling the bathtub with enough warm water to be able to submerge your body when you sit. Mix four to five tablespoons of sodium bicarbonate into the water and enjoy! For an added bonus you can mix in equal parts of apple cider vinegar, which will act as a drain cleaner once you are done!
As mentioned above, baking soda neutralized odors by balancing pH levels. This makes it an excellent natural deodorant. Make a paste out of water and baking soda and apply under your arm. Let the mixture dry and dress as normal. If you are not comfortable using just water and baking soda, or it is too alkaline for your liking, you can use it as an ingredient in one of many natural deodorant recipes.
7. Scrubbing agent
It can be used as a scrubbing agent in two ways. First, you can simply sprinkle it over the area you wish to scrub, like your bathtub, shower, or sink, and wipe down with a damp cloth. For a more powerful scrubbing agent you can mix it with your dish soap.
8. Facial treatments
Baking soda can be used numerous ways to help cleanse your face.
- Exfoliant: mix three parts baking soda with one part water to create a thick paste. Apply this paste to your face in a circular motion. Once applied gently rinse the paste from your face.
- Lighten your skin: Mix baking soda with a tablespoon of lemon juice and a few drops of olive oil. After cleansing skin, apply this paste to your face and rinse after 10 minutes.
- Acne treatment: try a mixture of baking soda and honey to help clear and skin. Apply for 15 minutes and rinse
9. Insect bites
Apply a paste made of baking soda and water to insect bites to help relieve itching. Generally, use a paste that is one part baking soda and one part water. You can also try rubbing the dry powder onto your skin. The baking soda should neutralize the itching and can help with any swelling too.
10. Balance your pH levels
This is an obvious use of baking soda, as its main function is to balance pH levels. Maintaining a proper pH level in your body is important to keeping it healthy. It is best to first test your pH levels to determine if you need to balance your levels. If your average is low or in the acidic range, drink a glass of water with a half-teaspoon of baking soda dissolved in it twice per day.
In addition to balancing your pH level, baking soda can help reduce the effects of a cold. It is recommended to follow the three day plan below:
- Day 1 – Take six doses of baking soda in glass of water at about two-hour intervals.
- Day 2 – Take four doses of baking soda in a glass of water at the same intervals.
- Day 3 – Take two doses of baking soda in a glass of water in the morning and in the evening, and after that only once each morning until cold symptoms are gone.
These are just 10 ways you can use baking soda around your house, for your health or for beauty care. There are countless other ways to use baking soda!