Baking soda. Everyone has at least one box in their house somewhere, right? Most of us have one in our kitchen cabinet for any recipes that call for baking soda. But did you know that baking soda can be used in your personal care routine? As the move towards natural remedies and personal care products gains popularity, more and more people are turning to baking soda as an answer to many of their health and hygiene needs.
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What is Baking Soda?
Baking soda is sodium bicarbonate, which is an alkaline compound. In simpler terms, it’s a chemical compound that neutralizes acids, such as vinegar, lemon juice, buttermilk, yogurt and cream of tartar. When mixed with any of these common household acids, carbon dioxide gas is produced. In baking, baking soda is used to make dough rise when bubbles from the carbon dioxide gas become trapped in the dough and expand when heated.
How to Use Baking Soda in Your Personal Care Routine
1. Whiter Teeth, Healthy Teeth
When added to your toothpaste once a week, baking soda helps to remove plaque and reduce stains. It also kills streptococcus, a common bacteria found in your mouth that causes tooth decay. You can also use it as a mouth rinse to kill bacteria that cause bad breath. Mix 1/2 teaspoon with 4oz of water, swish thoroughly and spit.
2. Clean, Soft, Fresh-Smelling Hands
Baking soda can also clean, exfoliate, and remove odors from your hands if you’ve been chopping onions or garlic. Using three parts baking soda mixed with one part water, massage the paste into your hands and rinse with warm water. Repeat if necessary.
3. Facial Exfoliant
Baking soda can soften your face by removing dead skin. You can use the same recipe as you did in #2 above. Massage paste all over your face in a circular motion and rinse with warm water. Do this once a week.
4. Softer Skin Soak
Relax in a hot bath and soften skin at the same time. Add one cup of baking soda to your bath water and soak. Rather than towel dry, let your skin air dry.
5. Irritated Skin ReliefIf you are suffering from a sunburn, allergic rash, itchy mosquito bites, or poison ivy or oak, follow the directions in #4 above and soak away the irritation.
6. Relieve Baby’s Diaper Rash
We hate it when our babies suffer, especially when it comes to diaper rashes! Add two tablespoons of baking soda to your baby’s warm bath water and let them soak and play for about 10 minutes. The baking soda helps to restore the ph balance of your baby’s skin reducing and soothing the inflammation.
7. Treat Bug Bites
For itchy bug bites, create a paste from one teaspoon baking soda and water and rub onto the bites and let dry. Reapply two or three times a day until the bites stop itching.
8. Soothe, Clean, and Deodorize Feet
Pamper your feet with this homemade foot bath. Add three tablespoons of baking soda to warm water and soak. Your feet will be clean and soft in no time. The baking soda will also act as a deodorizer, killing any foot odor-causing bacteria that may be lurking. Similarly, baking soda will help prevent toenail fungus as well.
9. Cleaner, More Natural Hair
Today’s hair care products tend to leave behind a residue that doesn’t always get washed away with your everyday shampooing. To ensure your hair gets squeaky clean you can mix about a teaspoon of baking soda in your palm along with your shampoo and massage the mixture into your hair and scalp. This amount works for medium length hair. Adjust the amount of baking soda accordingly for the length of your hair. Use this treatment about once a week for cleaner, more natural hair.
10. Clean Brushes and Combs
As in #8 above, residue from your hair care products can build up on your brushes and combs, as well. Once a week, soak them in a solution of one teaspoon baking soda per one cup of warm water overnight. Rinse and dry.
Baking soda is a natural, effective and inexpensive way to enhance your personal care routine. So what are you waiting for? Go raid your kitchen cabinet, grab that little orange box and start working towards a cleaner, softer, better smelling you!
Stay tuned for more ways to use baking soda for your health and in your home.
If you have any other baking soda tips for personal care, please share with us and comment below!
Until we meet again…