22 Cleaning, Health, and Beauty Hacks with Baking Soda

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Baking soda is one of those products you have in your home that you don’t really know is amazing. Some of us have it mainly to keep our refrigerators smelling fresh while others may keep it on hand for baking. 

You may be wondering what is baking soda used for if you haven’t read much about the versatile ways that you can incorporate it into your life. Baking soda isn’t just for the kitchen you can use it to clean, improve your health and even incorporate it into your daily beauty routine.

How to Use Baking Soda for Cleaning

Why is baking soda good for cleaning? A simple, cheap white powder in a box can’t be that great can it?

In truth, it can be. Baking soda’s natural and nontoxic properties make it a must have for anyone who is interested in cleaning with natural products. If you keep a box of this stuff in the fridge then you are already aware of its ability to neutralize odors.

Baking soda jar beside a glass of water and a spoonful of powder

That’s not all though, baking soda can also lift stains, provide powerful cleaning to your bathroom surfaces and be mixed with other natural products like white vinegar to create a foaming cleaner.

Baking Soda on Its Own

​When you are dealing with baking soda all by itself, you may wonder Is baking soda a good cleaning agent? While alone, baking soda is great for neutralizing odors, what can you do with it to help clean your home as well?

Baking Soda on Carpet

​Before you vacuum, sprinkle some baking soda on your carpets. This powder alone will help get rid of any smells that may be in your carpet. However, that’s not all it can do.

Baking soda is naturally absorbent and when it comes into contact with any dirt in your carpet, then it will cling to it to help lift the dirt out of your carpet fibers.

In order to give yourself the best dirt lifting power, you should sprinkle baking soda on your carpets and let it sit anywhere from 30 minutes to overnight. This gives the baking soda time to neutralize any odors and absorb or cling to dirt. Finally you will vacuum up the baking soda with a simple stick vacuum to pick up the residue and re-fluff your carpets texture.

Baking Soda in the Kitchen

​While you are cleaning up in your kitchen you can use a sprinkle of baking soda on a few different things to help naturally boost your cleaning routine.

  1. Sprinkle baking soda in the sink with dirty dishes to help loosen stuck on food.
  2. ​Use two tablespoons mixed with water in a pan soaking to lift stubborn grease.
  3. Put a little baking soda on a damp sponge to scrub and clean your kitchen appliances.
  4. Use baking soda to soak china or coffee cups that have a leftover stain.

Using baking soda in the kitchen is a great way to neutralize any lingering food odors on your surfaces and add a gentle scrubbing agent to your surfaces. It’s also easy to grab if you keep a box of it in your fridge, just scoop out a tablespoon for cleaning as needed.

Baking Soda in the Pool

Using baking soda in your pool raises the alkalinity of the water, which helps your pool maintain a crystal clear look to it. Don’t be shy, as it takes a decent amount to have an effect, as there is a lot of water in a standard pool.

Baking soda works really well to keep pool water crystal clear

Baking Soda Mixed with Other Products

​While there are plenty of baking soda uses for just baking soda alone, there are also a few great ways that you can mix baking soda to power up it’s cleaning capabilities.

What Do You Mix Baking Soda With to Clean

​These are the top three natural products that most individuals mix with baking soda to create powerful and nontoxic cleaning solutions for their home. Each one offers a different cleaning type solution so read on to find the best baking soda cleaning solution mix for you.

Lemon – This fruit has a natural disinfecting quality that when mixed with baking soda becomes a powerful scrubbing sanitizer. One of the simplest ways to clean with these two products is to cut a lemon in half with a sharp knife, sprinkle baking soda on the open face and then begin to scrub your surfaces.

Salt – Great for adding extra grit for scrubbing as well as providing antibacterial and whitening properties to your DIY cleaning products. You can mix salt and baking soda together on a sponge for powerful scrubbing on surfaces that can take it like stainless steel and plumbing appliances.

For a more integrated cleaning spray you will want to dissolve the salt in to water with baking soda, so it is not as abrasive on all of your surfaces.

Two jars labeled baking soda and vinegar

Vinegar – Remember the old school volcano projects in school? Most people are aware that when you mix baking soda and vinegar then it fizzes and explodes out of a paper mache volcano to wow your friends and family, but this is not all the mixture is good for.

From the peskiest carpet cleaning sessions to unclogging your ​plumbing, vinegar and baking soda are a fizzling, powerful, cleaning match made in heaven.

Ways to Clean with Vinegar and Baking Soda

​There are a few things to know about cleaning with vinegar and baking soda, so let’s break down a few different ways you can clean with the two so that you can be a vinegar and baking soda cleaner pro.

You can use vinegar and baking soda to clean many surfaces from cleaning kitchen appliances to working on your carpet to lift stubborn stains.

Can You Mix Baking Soda and Vinegar to Clean in a Spray Bottle?

​Sadly, no. Since the two create a chemical reaction, you have to keep them separated until go-time.

Use Vinegar and Baking Soda to Clean Your Oven

​This is a great way to give your oven a non-toxic fume cleaning. When you want to learn how to clean your oven with vinegar and baking soda then you can follow these easy steps.

  1. Mix baking soda with water to create a paste.
  2. Empty your oven (no pots, pans, racks)
  3. Spread the paste all over the oven, rubbing it in good.
  4. ​Leave the paste overnight or up to 24 hours.
  5. ​Use a damp cloth to wipe the paste off.
  6. Some paste will clump and may stick.
  7. Use a spray bottle of pure white vinegar to spray the clumps of baking soda residue.
  8. Let the two cleaning agents fizzle for a few minutes and then wipe clean.
  9. Spray the rest of your oven with vinegar and wipe it clean one more time.
baking soda vinegar clean carpet
Unclog Pipes with Baking Soda and Vinegar

This expanding mixture is one of the best to use if you are experiencing clogging in your plumbing pipes. It’s also a top choice since it won’t mess up your septic tank or damage your pipes with harsh chemicals.

When you have standing water in your shower, turn the water off and let the puddle slowly drain down. Once you have access to the drain, sprinkle baking soda in the drain. Next you will want to pour some vinegar directly into the drain and then place the drain cover on to keep the reaction going down the pipes.

How to Unclog a Toilet with Baking Soda

​Not just for absorbing odors, baking soda is also handy in the bathroom if you encounter any clogs in your toilet. There are a few steps that you can take to handle anywhere from minor to even larger clogs.

  1. Slowly pour a cup of baking soda into your clogged toilet and let it settle at the bottom of the bowl.
  2. ​Carefully pour two cups of pure white vinegar into the toilet. Pay attention to the reaction fizzing so that it doesn’t boil over the top and out.
  3. ​Let the mixture sit for two hours and then try to flush.
  4. If it is still clogged then add a little more of both components and let it sit overnight before trying to flush again.

After the first two hours you can also try to use a plunger on the toilet. If you have a plumbing snake then you can also try to use that to loosen the clog.

Another combination is to pour the baking soda down into the toilet and then follow it with a gallon of boiling hot water. Just make sure that the water level isn’t too high to add any liquids in. The boiling water should be able to penetrate the clog and force it down.

How Do you Make a Cleaning Spray with Baking Soda

​If you want a bottled version of a powerful baking soda cleaner then you mix:

  • ​1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • ​1 teaspoon baking soda
  • ​½ a quart of water

This creates a simple cleaner that is powerful enough to deodorize and clean hard surfaces,​ including your favorite handheld shower heads. The sanitizing and grease fighting effect of the lemon makes it a great choice for an all purpose kitchen cleaning spray.

Baking soda mixed with lemon juice is a wonderful and good smelling cleaner

Benefits of Baking Soda for Your Health

​Not only is baking soda good for cleaning and cooking, but you can also incorporate this product into your routine to help improve your health.

Baking Soda for Gout

​One of many natural remedies for gout is to mix baking soda into your diet a four time a day to help reduce the amount of uric acid in the body. Baking soda is a good match for relieving some of the symptoms and gout attacks due to it’s alkaline properties that work to reduce acid levels.

To try, mix:

  • ½ teaspoon
  • 8 fluid ounces of water

​To get the full dose of this gout helping remedy, you will want to drink this four times a day, usually around mealtime and before bed.

The downside to this is that baking soda has high levels of sodium and can raise your blood pressure if you already have high blood pressure or too much of a salt intake issue. It is always a good idea to talk to your doctor before you try any natural remedies, just to make sure that you are not ingesting anything that could be potentially harmful to another aspect of your health.

Glass of water in front of a white background

Mouth Ulcer Relief with Baking Soda

​Mouth ulcers can be painful and uncomfortable to deal with. Thankfully you can quickly whip up a baking soda paste at home to help relieve some of the symptoms and promote faster healing.

  1. Mix 1 tbsp of baking soda and 1 tsp water.
  2. ​Once you have a smooth paste you can dab it on the ulcer.
  3. ​Let it sit for a couple of minutes until it dries up.
  4. ​Rinse the baking soda with warm water and gargle.

The baking soda works to neutralize the acidic properties in your mouth while also reducing the inflammation around the ulcer. This paste will also soothe the ulcer so that it is not as painful.

Epsom Salt and Baking Soda

​Mixing these two natural products together creates a spa like treatment for your body after a long day. You can use them combined to take a hot bath, or keep it simple and just soak your feet.

Make sure the water is good and hot so that both products will dissolve. Add in a cup of epsom salts and a cup of baking soda to the water and let it sit for five minutes to make sure the mixture dissolves into the water.

The epsom salt works to flush toxins and reduce inflammation while the baking soda will soften your skin and cleanse with its antifungal properties.

Maple Syrup and Baking Soda

​When you mix baking soda and maple syrup then you are creating a potential cancer fighting mixture. The tested theory for this mixture claims that cancer cells absorb sweet maple syrup which acts as a carrier for the alkaline baking soda to enter the cells and reduce their acid levels.

This remedy has not been cleared by healthcare professionals so if you want to add baking soda into your diet in an attempt to help battle cancer then make sure that you run it by your doctor to make sure that it won’t affect any current treatments you may be taking.

Baking soda has a variety of uses, from cleaning to helping your health

Baking Soda Hacks for Your Beauty

​There are a few different ways that you can incorporate the great attributes of baking soda into your beauty routine. From your face to your oral health, baking soda is a gentle yet effective tool to keep next to the bathroom sink to help you achieve a natural and healthy glow all around.

Cleanse your Face

​You can use baking soda a few different ways as a face wash or mask to help combat acne, remove dark spots and brighten your face.

Basic Baking Soda Mask

​Make a paste with baking soda and water. Mix about half and half and then add more of one until you reach a good consistency for making a face mask.

Spread the baking soda mixture on your face and let it sit for 2-3 minutes or until it feels dry. Rinse your face with water and pat dry. Follow up with a moisturizing cream since baking soda can dry out your skin.

Woman lying down with a mask on her face and some cucumbers

This simple mask gives your face an exfoliating and anti-fungal treatment to help clean any blemishes and then prevent future ones from popping up. It is a simple mask that you can make once or twice a week to give your face a deep cleaning.

Lemon and Baking Soda Mask

​This mixture works to brighten your skin while cleaning to help clear up any acne and even your skin tone.

To make this mask mix:

  • ​1 tsp baking soda
  • ​1 tsp lemon juice (fresh or bottled)
  1. Make a paste with these ingredients and set it side.
  2. ​Wash your face and then pat it completely dry.
  3. ​Gentle massage the paste onto any blemished areas and dark spots.
  4. ​Leave the mixture on for 1-2 minutes.
  5. Rinse your face with warm water and then pat it dry.

This mixture not only helps give you a healthier glow and complexion, it also smells amazing and leaves your skin smelling lemony fresh afterwards. Just make sure that you use a moisturizer after you finish to make sure your skin doesn’t dry out too much from the baking soda.

Create a Healing Rash Ointment

​Creating a ointment paste with coconut oil and baking soda can help naturally clear an itchy skin rash while providing you with relief.

Mix 1 tablespoon of coconut oil with one tablespoon of baking soda. Apply the mixture to the entire affected area and leave it on for about 5-10 minutes. Wash the paste off with cool water and pat the area dry.

You can use this mixture daily until the rash clears up or improves enough for you to not need it. The rash healing ointment works due to the antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties of coconut oil mixed with the baking soda that has absorbing properties to help dry out any oozing rashes.

Whiten Your Teeth

​One pretty well known life hacks for baking soda is that it can whiten your teeth. Many toothpastes advertise that they have baking soda in the mixture to help boost the toothpastes whitening power. This is good, but you don’t need to buy a whole tube of toothpaste to utilize these great effects.

Make your own mixture by adding:

Mix these two together to make a paste and then lightly brush your teeth with it. For best results, use this mixture after you perform a standard cleaning so that your teeth have no obstructions on them. You will also want to brush this mixture on lightly, so that you aren’t over brushing and damaging your teeth and gums.

Woman close up of a smile on her face

After about a minute you can go ahead and rinse. This is a great mixture to add into your dental hygiene routine about once a week. This way you are gently cleaning and whitening your teeth without overdoing it and damaging the enamel.

Baking Soda Shampoo Substitute

​It is becoming a cool trend to ditch the harsh chemical laden shampoos and to use more natural ways to clean your hair. No surprise, baking soda based shampoos are at the top of the DIY shampoo list.

Dandruff Fighting Treatment

​This simple no fuss treatment works to exfoliate your scalp to help clear up any lingering dead skin cells as well as unclog any hair follicles that attribute to dandruff.

  1. Use a tablespoon of baking soda.
  2. Massage the baking soda into your damp scalp, use the same technique you do when you shampoo.
  3. ​Rinse rinse your hair.
  4. Skip using shampoo, but conditioner is ok.

You can use this treatment twice a week until you start to see improvement with your dandruff issues. Once your dandruff improves then you can use this treatment once a week to maintain a healthy and clean scalp.

Baking soda has tons of modern day uses

Baking Soda Shampoo

​If you are looking for a simple DIY shampoo that is gentle enough to use daily then you can make your own with baking soda, water and castor oil.

You will need:

  • ​1 cup of baking soda
  • ​3 cups of water
  • 20 drops of castor oil
  1. Add the mixture to a standard shampoo bottle.
  2. ​Dampen your hair and mix the DIY shampoo into your scalp.
  3. Massage the solution in for a few minutes, working it around your scalp and down through your hair.
  4. ​Rinse thoroughly and use conditioner if needed.

Baking soda will cleanse your hair and restore a good PH balance to your scalp. The castor oil is a healthy element to give your hair a nice shine while also promoting hair growth.

DIY Deodorant

​If you are caught in a pinch and run out of deodorant during a busy week, or if you want to try a walk on the more natural side of life, then you can use baking soda to create your own deodorant by mixing these simple ingredients that you probably already have around the house.

  • ​⅓ Cup coconut oil
  • ​¼ Cup baking soda
  • ​¼ Cup arrowroot powder
  • 4 Tbsp cornstarch
  • A couple drops of essential oil (optional)

Mix together the dry ingredients and then use a fork to mix in the coconut oil. You can opt to add in a few drops of your favorite essential oil to give this homemade deodorant a personalized fragrance.

Woman checking her underarms

You can add more baking soda or coconut oil to reach the consistency that you prefer. It’s important to know that coconut oil stays in a solid form at temperatures under 76 degrees, so this deodorant needs to be stored in a cooler place, unless you prefer it to be a little more flexible.

In Closing

​There are so many different ways that you can incorporate baking soda into your life. Plus the best part, baking soda is super affordable, so you can easily stock up and not be afraid to use this product liberally in your home.

Lauren Moldvay is a freelance writer from Virginia and the mother of one (not always) sweet little girl. She specializes in trying to help others find easier ways to clean, manage the home and save money with DIY projects.