Baking soda is one of the most versatile products on the market. Plus, it’s really, really cheap. Its official name is sodium bicarbonate, and it’s great for neutralizing odors, cleaning, and deodorizing. And the best part is that it doesn’t contain some of the toxic ingredients present in many of today’s products. Baking soda has dozens of uses. From clearing up skin rashes to removing offending smells and making flower blossoms last longer, it’s surprising that more people don’t take advantage of its properties. Check out some incredible uses for baking soda…
1. Ease Insect Bites
Everyone hates bug bites. Not only are they unsightly, they can also be uncomfortable and itchy. If you forget to use bug spray and are suffering the consequences, simply mix baking soda and water together to create a paste. Then use it as a salve to treat the infected area and make it heal quicker.
2. Clean Your Hairbrush
Admit it, you probably have a comb or hair brush in your bathroom that you haven’t cleaned for years. It probably has some build up on it that is pretty gross. The good news is that baking soda is a great way to revive your brush and make it look brand new.
3. Deodorize The Refrigerator
Stinky refrigerators can be disgusting. Perhaps it’s due to some leftovers, or maybe you haven’t cleaned it in a while. Regardless of the source, a foul smell can be a big turn off if it’s embedded in your food.
4. Freshen Your Breath & Polish Your Teeth
No one likes having stinky breath. If you don’t have a mint, simply add one teaspoon of baking soda to a glass of water. Swish the mixture in your mouth and then spit it out. Voila! Fresh breath. Baking soda can also be used as a natural toothpaste. While some experts only recommend occasional use because it can be quite abrasive, the substance can give your chompers a nice, clean, polished look. Simply add it to your homemade toothpaste every few weeks.
5. Soften Your Feet
Our feet go through a lot on a daily basis. We walk and stand on them throughout the day, whether we’re working, exercising, or spending time with family and friends. It’s no wonder they get tired and sometimes hurt. Why not pamper them a bit? Create a solution with three tablespoons of baking soda and a small tub of warm water. Add a few drops of your favorite essential oil. Then soak your feet to soothe and soften them. This is a great way to unwind after a long day at the office or a harrowing day with your kids.
6. Mop The Floor
No one likes cleaning, and mopping the floor can be a pain. But if you’re out of cleaning fluid or want a more natural solution, simply pour 1/2-cup of baking soda into a bucket of warm water. Then mix the solution and mop and clean the floor.
7. Ward Off Ants
Ants can be annoying. They build ant hills in the yard, some of them bite, and many of them end up in the house, wandering around aimlessly looking for food. First, mix equal parts baking soda and salt. Next, sprinkle the mixture in the area where you see the ants coming into your kitchen or another area of your home. This solution acts as a ward to keep the insects away.
8. Unclog A Sink
There are some homemaking tasks that are worse than others. Cleaning a clogged drain is one of them. If you don’t have any Drano on hand, you can take care of the problem by mixing 1/2-cup of baking soda, one cup of vinegar, and some hot water together. Pour the solution into the clogged drain and wait. It won’t take too long for the clog to dissipate. This is a clever solution to an annoying problem, and you can use it on both wash sinks and bathtub drains. 9. Deodorize The Litter Box Everyone loves kittens (unless you’re a dog person). And while the furry felines can be our best friends, one of the worst parts of pet ownership is cleaning the litter box. Frankly, it’s a stinky job. But you can make the task a little easier with baking soda. All you need to do is sprinkle the bottom of the litter box with baking soda, and then cover it with the litter itself. It will act as a deodorizing agent. In between litter changes, simply sprinkle some baking soda on top.
10. Make Flowers Last Longer
Most women (and maybe some men) really enjoy getting a fresh bouquet of flowers. It’s even better when they last a really long time. There is a way to make them more durable. Add a teaspoon of baking soda to the water in the vase, and they’ll stay fresher much longer. So the next time your son or daughter brings you some flowers from the garden, or your significant other surprises you with a special bouquet, show them how much you appreciate the gesture by keeping the arrangement around as long as you can.
11. Wash Your Fruits & Veggies
As you probably realize, produce can be really dirty. Everyone knows it’s important to wash fruits and vegetables, but we often just do so in plain water. Instead, mix 1/4-cup of baking soda with a full sink of water. Gently wash the produce and then rinse it with clean water. This is a safe and effective way to ensure that your fruit and vegetables are as clean as possible before you eat them. It’s just one step to make sure that the pears, apples, tomatoes, and other produce you consume is as healthy as it can be.
12. Relieve Diaper Rash
Babies have it so tough. They eat, sleep, and poop, and many times any or all of those activities make them upset. But in all seriousness, they do have to deal with a truly uncomfortable condition: diaper rash. To combat this problem, put two tablespoons of baking soda into the baby’s bathwater. This will help get rid of the rash. The same solution can be applied to other types of rashes too. It’s a nice, natural solution to one of the body’s most common problems.
13. Remove Crayon Marks
Kids can be messy. They leave toys and clothes all over the house, and they can be really sloppy eaters (especially when they’re small). They also tend to color on things that aren’t meant to be drawn on, including walls. To get rid of crayon marks put baking soda on a slightly wet cloth and lightly rub the wall. Then wipe the wall with a clean, dry cloth. Fortunately, crayon marks aren’t too challenging to remove.
14. Freshen Your Coat Closet
A coat closet is very handy, but like the rest of your home, it needs to be cleaned and maintained on a regular basis. It can get damp and musty, particularly if it’s left unattended during the summer or other times of the year. To keep the contents of the closet in good condition, put an open box of baking soda on the shelf (just like you do in the refrigerator). This will repel odors and keep all your jackets and winter coats inside smelling fresh. 15. Abolish Toilet Odor The toilet is probably on the top of the list of your home’s worst smelling spots. It gets a lot of use, and if it’s not properly cared for and cleaned, it can stink pretty badly. But you can repel some of the odor with just a few simple steps. Just put a cup of baking soda in the toilet, and let it sit there for about an hour. Then flush it. The baking soda both cleans the commode and absorbs odor. Everyone should start doing this one simple task to make life easier and better smelling.
16. Remove Odor From Your Hands
Have you ever gotten a strong odor on your hands that you can’t get rid of? This is a common problem for home chefs who frequently work with powerful-smelling ingredients such as garlic and onion. Fortunately, it’s not too hard to remove the stench.
17. Make Deodorant
As you know by now, baking soda is a natural deodorizer. It makes sense that you may want to use it as a natural deodorant on your skin. Some people just sprinkle the substance on their armpits to avoid being stinky. Note: it won’t work as an antiperspirant. For some people, baking soda alone may be too harsh if they have sensitive skin. However, it can be combined with other ingredients to make a good deodorant. This is a great solution if you’re in a pinch and run out of your regular product.
18. Replace Your Expensive Dry Shampoo
We all know what it’s like going to the store and feel the pain in our wallet when we buy that $5 can of dry shampoo that we know is only going to last us 2 weeks. Baking soda is here to help save your pennies and your hair by being your new go-to dry shampoo! Just take one tablespoon of baking soda, mix it with water until it becomes a paste, scrub and let it sit in your scalp for 3-5 minutes then rinse it off! It’s not the driest, but it’ll save you a wash on your hair.
19. Clean Your Rugs And Carpets
Reach for that baking soda in your cupboard and say goodbye to borrowing the rug cleaner machines from your mother-in-law. Those things are a huge pain to lug around and leave your carpets wet for days after. Not our trusty baking soda though. It will leave your carpet smelling and feeling clean. All you have to do is sprinkle it over your carpet, rub it into the fibers, and then vacuum it up. Simple as that! An added bonus is that it cleans your vacuum’s guts as well.
20. Put Out (Small) Grease Fires
If you’re cooking with grease you should always have the right fire extinguishing equipment on hand, and you should never use water. With that being said, if for whatever reason baking soda is all you have then you can put out small grease fires with that. Just be safe and use common sense. If there is a small grease fire in your pan, turn the heat off, put on the lid, pour on a lot of baking soda, and then spray a fire extinguisher as a last resort if the fire is still burning.
21. Get Your Non-Stick Pots Looking Like New Again
No matter how non-stick something advertises it is, chances are it’s always going to get a few brown spots. It’s one of the laws of the universe. Whether it’s on the basin of the pan or on the underside, make your kitchen gear sparkle with a little baking soda. All you have to do is boil a large pot of water, put in a cup of baking soda, let your pots and pans soak in it for 20-30 minutes, and give any tough spots a scrub.
22. Hardboiled Eggs Never Peeled This Easy!
That hardest part of making hardboiled eggs is always peeling them at the end. No matter what you do it’s always a process that involves you picking, smashing, and ultimately getting eggshells all over the floor and your counter. Remove this particular headache from your life with our hero baking soda. By adding just a teaspoon of baking soda to the water when you boil your eggs, the shell will come off way easier. We promise it won’t make your eggs taste like baking soda either.
23. Stop Garden Pests
For everyone with a green thumb who loves to grow their own fruits and vegetables, we all know one of the biggest gardening challenges will always be finding new ways to combat those invasive critters. Take a stand against cabbage worms with a little baking soda. All you have to do is mix an equal amount of flour and baking soda and sprinkle the mixture onto the produce you’re trying to save. When the worms take a nibble the mixture will kill them. Enjoy eating nature’s bounty with baking soda!
24. Get Rid Of Those Annoying Blackheads
We all get blackheads. They’re those annoying little black dots on your nose that are really just pimples without the skin over them so the gunk just sits there and turns black. They’re the worst, but thankfully baking soda is here to help. All you have to do is mix a teaspoon of baking soda and a teaspoon of water to make a paste and then rub it on top of your wet face. Let that sit for a minute then rinse off. The baking soda will help clean the blackheads out and prevent more from forming.
25. Make An Organic Facial Cleanser
Give your skin a break from harsh chemicals by making this DIY facial cleanser. It’ll leave your face feeling clean and refreshed without stripping it of all its oils, and it’s made with none other than our good friend baking soda. Grab 4 drops of tea tree essential oil, 3 of cedar wood, 3 of lavender and mix with 1/2 a cup of baking soda, and 1/2 a cup of coconut oil. This combo will gently exfoliate without being too harsh on your skin.
26. Clear Out Your Drains Too
It’s such a hassle when our sink gets clogged — it’s one of those things that bug you until you fix it but you put it off because it’s so annoying to fix. Spare yourself the heartache that comes with dumping nasty chemicals down the sink or scrubbing it with a brush and reach for baking soda instead. Mix baking soda with apple cider vinegar and pour it down. Let the combo bubble for 15 minutes before you dump a pot of hot water in to clear it. Your sink will be in the clear thanks to you.
27. Your Shoes Won’t Smell Awful
We’ve all got stinky feet and that’s a fact. Sometimes it gets so bad that you can smell it even when you’re wearing your sneakers and that’s just no good. To combat the foot smell you can sprinkle a little baking soda in your shoes and the smell will be gone within minutes. All you need to do is tap the loose powder out and you’re good to roll. Or walk.
28. Help Soothe Congestion With A DIY Shower Soother
Shower soothers are those little lifesaving pucks you put on the floor of your shower that vaporizes and mixes with the steam to help calm a congested nose and sinus. They’re basically lifesavers when you’re sick. All you need to do is mix 3 cups of baking soda and a 1/3 cup of water then pour the mixture into a cupcake tin lined with cupcake papers. Dry it by baking for 20 minutes at 350 degrees in the oven then drop a few drops of essential oil on top. Enjoy.
29. Weed Out Pesky Sidewalk Crack Weeds
We’ve all been confused about how to tackle the weeds growing in between the sidewalk cracks. Do you try and dig it out with a chopstick or do you just ignore it and hope it stops growing? Stand up to those tiny menaces with a little baking soda. All you need to do is moisten the greens of the weed then sprinkle a little baking soda evenly on top of it. You can also just dump tons of baking soda into the cracks. This is a great way to avoid nasty pesticides and kill those suckers!
30. Dive Right Into Your Clean Pool
Baking soda is a great way to also get that pool in your backyard looking good after a long winter or fall of disuse. Scrub away those nasty algae, dirt, and bug remnants with a little elbow grease and a simple water and baking soda paste. A bonus of using baking soda is that it’s a natural alkaline increaser for your water. All you have to do is add 1.5 pounds of baking soda for every 10,000 gallons of water to increase the alkalinity by 10 ppm. It’s a great all-natural alternative to those other chemicals.
31. Tackle Cold Sores
Cold sores are so annoying and so embarrassing. When you have one it’s all you can think about all day and all you want to do is pick at it. Don’t buy those expensive creams from the drug store and instead pick up the ol’ faithful baking soda. All you need to do is mix a simple paste out of water and baking soda and dab it onto the cold sore. The baking soda will dry out the cold sore and flatten it on contact. It really can do anything.
32. Add It To Your Coffee To Make It Less Acidic
We all love coffee but we all hate it when it’s so acidic that it burns your stomach a little and you spend the rest of the morning in discomfort. Avoid the rumbly stomach that acidic coffee gives you by using baking soda. Now don’t go mixing it in your cup like sugar — that would be pretty gross. Since baking soda is alkaline it will neutralize coffee’s acid. Just add a pinch to the top of the grounds before brewing and voila, the coffee will be easier on your stomach. We hope you enjoyed these tips.
Comment below with some that you found or how these worked for you. ~ Cheers!
Beth for VossBotanicals