I love baking soda. I. Love. Baking. Soda. I LOVE baking soda!
I cannot say it enough and in enough ways to illustrate my passion for this product. Perhaps you think passion is too strong a word, but I don’t think so.
Although I am a person who loves decadent, luxurious products, at the other end of my spectrum of product loves, I deeply enjoy products that are utterly simple that have a multitude of uses. Like organic virgin coconut oil. Shea butter. Simple cold-processed soaps. Rhassoul clay. And, most of all, baking soda.
The pay off is so great because not only are these one-ingredient wonders so simply natural, but they are very cost-effective considering that you can buy them in bulk and use them for multiple uses. For instance, Rhassoul clay can be used for a facial, for a hair treatment, and in your bath and foot soaks, while shea butter can be used for a deep conditioner for your hair, a facial treatment, cuticle balm, foot balm, hand cream, shaving cream…you get the picture. Now, on to baking soda…
When I lived in Michigan, I used to buy the Kroger brand baking soda and an even cheaper brand at a local Dollar Store, but I have found Arm and Hammer’s Baking Soda to be the best. It has the most consistent quality in my opinion and works well for all of my many uses for it. Here at Target, I buy smaller, 8-ounce boxes for cosmetic use for 47 cents, and large, 4-pound boxes for household use at Stop and Shop (a local grocery store) for $2.77. Now, you can’t beat that!
If you do a Google search for baking soda, you will literally find hundreds of uses for baking soda that many have listed and even published as books. A majority of my uses for baking soda, however, have come from generations of using it within my family, and from trial and error experiments when I wondered, “Hmmm, will baking soda work for this?”
My grandmother used baking soda in her bath water to soften skin and soothe any irritations. She also brushed her teeth with it several times a week. This was how I was first introduced to baking soda as a child. I then thought that the taste was too strong and salty, but now I have gotten used to it and, dare say, I actually like it, a lot.
As I mentioned in the previous post, I use baking soda several times a week to brush my teeth, and I put 1-2 teaspoons of it in my mouth with some water as a quick and easy mouthwash after flossing or between meals. I like the cooling effect that it gives, and it really freshens my breath and gives me a quick boost.
When I remember to do this, I end up with soft, radiant skin. In the shower, I mix my liquid facial cleanser with a very small amount (1/2 tsp. or less) of baking soda) and I gently apply this mixture to my facial skin in a circular motion. This treatment acts as a simple and safe microdermabrasion spa experience for me; my skin is left very soft, radiant and any blemishes are lightened. I would use this no more than once a week for sensitive, dry skin and perhaps twice a week for combination to oily skin.
Since I use either shampoo bars or natural, castile based liquid shampoos to wash my hair, every so often I have to clarify to get rid of any soap residue and the occasional bout of dandruff I may have. I often mix 1-2 teaspoons of baking soda in my liquid shampoo and this works like a charm. I do this once a month, or as needed.
When my scalp needs a good deep-down cleansing, after lathering up my hair with my shampoo bar I will add 2-3 teaspoons of baking soda to the palm of my hands and scrub my scalp with it thoroughly, mixing the baking soda with the shampoo soap to get rid of any residues and buildup. My scalp is left clean and clear, but if I use too much or if I happen to use a more drying shampoo, I will lightly oil my scalp once I rinse out the shampoo and use an apple cider vinegar (ACV) rinse consisting of 1 part ACV to 5 parts water.
When I’ve had a rough week and I want to splurge, I add an entire 1-pound box of baking soda to my bath water, along with my essential oils, liquid castile soap, and other goodies. It may be too much, but I love it and it works well for me! A more reasonable amount may be 1/2 cup.
Toward the end of my shower, I add a couple of teaspoons of baking soda to my exfoliating towel and scrub my entire body with it. It is a fantastic skin scrub and polisher, and leaves my skin smooth. I do this maybe once or twice a month.
I make a foot scrub with a mix of baking soda, sea salt, light oils, and essential oils. Works like a charm, since the sea salt provides the scrubbing action while the baking soda polishes and the oils moisturize and provide aromatherapy. Aahhh…
I make my own laundry powder and dishwasher detergent with baking soda and a mix of shredded soap, borax, washing soda and a bit of Oxy Clean. This leaves my clothes and dishes very clean!
I scrub my sinks and tubs with baking soda and vinegar – works like a charm if done regularly!
I also use baking soda in pots with stuck-on food by adding it to hot water and dish soap and letting them soak. Always works great!
For handwashing dishes I always add 1-2 tablespoons to my soapy water for extra cleansing power.
This may be an unexpected use, but I often use baking soda to relieve stress. Yes! I simply empty several ounces of baking soda into a bowl (from the box I use for cleaning, not for oral or cosmestic use) and run my hands through it, grinding it up in my hands as I would do the sand at the beach. The cool, powdery consistency calms me for some reason. Next time I do this I will have to add some relaxing essential oils to it, like lavender, chamomile, sandalwood or rosewood, to enhance the experience…
* * *
I use baking soda in so many other ways; this is just a sampling! How do you use baking soda? I look forward to hearing ideas that I may have never thought of, and I hope that this posting inspires you to take advantage of this very inexpensive household and beauty helper. It’s all-natural, super effective, long-lasting, and guaranteed to make your life easier and your beauty regimen more enhanced. 🙂