Baking soda has been around forever. Our moms and grandmas used baking soda in their freezers and refrigerators to absorb odors. But baking soda has many uses – uses that you may have never thought of. Here are several uses for baking soda that can help you save money and cut down on toxic chemicals in your home.
13. Baking soda will soothe insect bites and skin infections. Make a paste of baking soda and a few drops of water and place directly on bee stings, ant bites, mosquito bites, and other insect bites to soothe the area. For chicken pox and other lesions, add ½ cup of baking soda to a warm bath and soak in the water.
12. Extinguish fires with baking soda. Keep a box of baking soda near your stove to put out fires. Hopefully it won’t be needed, but if you ever have a cooking fire, you will be glad you had it nearby. Do not use flour to attempt to extinguish a fire, the flour is flammable and will spread the fire quickly.
11. Baking soda will increase the pH of your pool. When the pH of your pool drops, you can add baking soda to bring it back up. Baking soda is not harsh on the skin or eyes, so you can still swim after adding it.
10. Freshen your carpets with baking soda. If your carpet gets musty from smokers, pets, and other smelly activities, sprinkle baking soda all over, leave for half an hour, then vacuum. By using baking soda, you should no longer need to apply perfumy or chemical-laden carpet products to kill the carpet odor.
9. Use baking soda to strip hair product buildup. In the shower, make a paste of baking soda and water. How much baking soda you need depends on the length and thickness of your hair, but on average you will need a couple of tablespoons of baking soda. Work the baking soda mixture through your hair and leave in for about a minute. Rinse, then wash and condition your hair as usual. The baking soda works to strip product buildup, leaving you with shiny, healthy-looking locks.
8. Use baking soda as a boost to your laundry. By adding ½ cup of baking soda to each load of laundry, you are giving your detergent a boost by neutralizing odor, brightening your white, and softening hard water. Some even claim that adding baking soda during the rinse cycle will keep clothes fresher, longer.
7. Use baking soda to freshen your pets’ fur between baths. If Fluffy smells a bit funky, but you don’t have enough time to give him a bath, sprinkle baking soda through his coat and brush it out. The baking soda will neutralize the odor and brushing will distribute it evenly throughout your pet’s coat.
6. Baking soda makes quick work of cleaning a car battery. If your car won’t start and you think the battery may be dead, first check your battery cables. If the cables are tight, but there’s a powdery-green buildup around them, you can clean this up quickly with baking soda and water. Put some baking soda in a cup with water. Mix the solution up and pour it over the battery cables. Don’t touch the battery or cables either before or during the process. You should see a lot of foaming as the baking soda works to neutralize the acid and clean it away.
5. Clean your drains with baking soda. For slow drains, pour about ½ cup of baking soda down, then add about ½ cup of vinegar. Wait for about a minute, then rinse away. This baking soda and vinegar solution will foam up and clean residue and debris from the walls of your pipes. Your drains will smell fresher too.
4. Clean nearly anything with baking soda. Many people use baking soda to clean sinks, chrome, toilets, and tubs. Baking soda removes water spots on stainless steel sinks and appliances and provides a chemical-free way to clean without endangering your family’s health. You can also use baking soda to clean your teeth if you put just a bit on your toothbrush. Be careful not to scrub too hard – it is abrasive and can cause gum recession if too much friction is used. It’s also great for cleaning dentures and partials.
3. Make your own bath salts with baking soda. Sometimes after a hard day at work, we just want to light some candles, put on some music, and soak in a hot tub. To that end, you can make your own bath salts with a recipe containing one carton of Epsom salt, one small box of baking soda, and fragrant essential oils. For a dash of color, add a few drops of food coloring. Put these ingredients in a large bowl with a tight-fitting lid or a zipper seal bag and shake well. Store in an airtight, non-metal container and use ½ cup to your bath.
2. Baking soda is a natural antacid. If you want to reduce the amount of chemicals and artificial colorings you are ingesting or don’t want to buy expensive antacids, add ½ teaspoon of baking soda to about ½ cup of water, stir, and drink when you have a tummy ache. Those requiring a salt-restricted diet should consult their doctor before using baking soda as an antacid, but it is generally safe and works quickly.
1. Your mom and grandma were right – baking soda is a great deodorizer. If you allow last month’s left over spaghetti to turn into something that your guests may think is your kid’s science experiment, not even baking soda will help you. But baking soda does help reduce everyday odors in your freezer and refrigerator. You can also use baking soda in your trash can, litter box, shoes, car, and nearly anywhere else that is smelly. Just sprinkle a little baking soda into these areas to cut down on odors.
Baking soda is a versatile product that nearly everyone keeps in their homes but rarely use to its full potential. Save money and cut down on harmful chemicals in your home by utilizing baking soda in every way possible.