Home and Health - Uses for Baking Soda

This article, entitled Uses For Baking Soda….Cheap, Green and Works comes from partner site 719woman.com.

There is always a box of baking soda in our fridge and one in our pantry to use for odor prevention and cooking but…here’s my very new (for me) favorite way to use it…in my hair! My friend Cindy (who has helped me test all our “natural” beauty regimens) told me that when she was experimenting with using castor oil in her hair she had used too much, didn’t have time to wash her hair before having to leave her house and sprinkled some baking soda in her hair and it helped absorb the oil. So I filed that tidbit in the back of my head.

Now I have extremely dry hair and try not to wash it more than a couple of times a week or else it looks like straw. The other day I decided to work in the garden (I had just washed my hair the night before) and after about eight hours of sweating, my scalp was oily but not dirty. We were going out that evening so I grabbed some baking soda and rubbed a bit in my scalp and then proceeded to style my hair. It looked so great! It actually made my hair look fuller than when I use a volumizer and it’s so cheap. Now I’m using it before I style my hair in place of any hair products I’d been using and even though it absorbs oil and fluffs my hair, it doesn’t dry it out. Love it!

Over the years I have used baking soda in other ways than just cooking but I didn’t realize just how many different ways you could use it…saving yourself from chemicals and keeping more money in your pocket. Below we have a link that has 75 different ways you can use baking soda. I tried a few during the past week and was very happy with the results. Here’s a few that I personally tried (or have tried in the past)…

  • Underarm Deodorant - This made total sense when I read the suggestion but would it really work? For me, yes. Even on the two days I worked in the yard this week. I applied the baking soda with a powder puff.

  • Face and Body Scrub - Another great natural exfoliant. I can’t tell you how much money I have saved since starting this website and trying all the different natural products as beauty aids. Mix three parts baking soda to one part water and use as a body or face scrub. Very gentle (would work great on sensitive skin) but it can be drying so you want to make sure you moisturize after rinsing it off. I also have very dry skin and used this every night this past week and had no problems and my skin looks and feels smoother.

  • Foot Odor - I don’t usually have foot odor but I have a pair of slippers that were getting a little smelly (because I am having challenges with major hot flashes in the evening and even my feet are drenching some nights…some of you will know what I’m talking about!). Anyway, after just one sprinkling of some baking soda in the bottom of them…problem solved! Might have cost me a whopping five cents for that remedy.

  • Stuffed Animals - You can freshen stuffed animals (that don’t need major cleaning) with baking soda. I actually did this with a couple of stuffed animals that are kept in our cat beds (what can I say?) I sprinkled some baking soda on the stuffed animals, waited about fifteen minutes and then brushed them off. The stuffed animals smelled fresh again. *This also works great for pet beds and blankets.

  • Silver Cleaner - Even though I keep my silver in a chest, it still becomes tarnished after sitting for long periods of time. If you have a lot of silver to clean you can make up a paste using 1 1/2 cups of baking soda to 1/2 cup of water (in a bowl) and simply wipe each piece with a soft cloth dipped in the paste and then rinse off and dry thoroughly. You can also use a soft toothbrush but be careful because silver scratches easily. I didn’t have that many pieces to clean so I just dampened a cloth, put a bit of baking soda on the cloth, wiped, rinsed and dried. You can see what a difference it made and I didn’t have to scrub or use a lot of muscle.

  • Carpet Odors - If you have pets, this is a great way to get your carpets and rugs smelling fresher without adding scents. I find that a lot of the carpet deodorizers leave a heavy floral or fruity smell that can overpower your house. Just sprinkle it on the carpet or rugs and vacuum up…it also helps keep your vacuum smelling good too. And again, it’s cheap!

  • Toothpaste - They do make toothpaste with baking soda in it but the brand I prefer doesn’t. I tried brushing my teeth with just baking soda and I personally need/want that minty flavor that baking soda alone doesn’t provide. But what I have been doing is adding a little bit of the baking soda on my toothbrush along with my toothpaste for an added clean feeling and to help with stains (I drink a lot of coffee which is not good for teeth staying white.) An added bonus is I sprinkle a bit of the baking soda in my sink while I’m brushing my teeth and when I’m finished…clean teeth and a clean sink.

  • Shampoo - A small amount of baking soda added with shampoo will help remove styling products from your hair when washing. Sometimes I have quite a buildup and have to wash my hair twice to get all the product out. With the baking soda, I only have to wash once so I use less shampoo and save money.

  • Trash Odors - When the temperatures heat up, our trash bins in the garage can become quite smelly. I recently bought a lot of packages of chicken and tossed all the bloody packages and chicken parts in the trash. A couple of days later you could really smell all the chicken scraps. Even after the trash had been emptied there was a lingering (really bad) odor. I sprinkled baking soda in the bottom and the next day, you couldn’t smell any odors. Now I also sprinkle a bit in our indoor trash containers and the whole kitchen just smells better.

  • Sink Cleaner - Love using this in the kitchen and bathroom sinks. You can either make a paste with water and baking soda and apply to a sponge or dampen your sinks and sprinkle the baking soda around and then wipe off. It isn’t abrasive so it won’t scratch and it got all the stains out without having to scrub.

  • Hand Cleaner/Deodorizer - I keep a small jar of baking soda next to my kitchen sink. It’s great for cutting through dirt after I’ve been working in the yard, especially for under the nails. And it’s also excellent at getting rid of odors like garlic, onions, and shallots after I’ve been chopping them. I just add a bit of baking soda with some water and wash my hands. It’s quick, gentle and also softens my cuticles.

  • Fire Extinguisher - Baking soda will put out fires. You can carry a box in your car, keep some in your garage and kitchen (it doesn’t take the place of a fire extinguisher of course but it will put out a small fire in an emergency.)

If you like camping, a box of baking soda would be a perfect product to pack…you can wash dishes with it, scrub up pans, clean your hands, use as a deodorant and toothpaste and have something on hand to put out any fires…all in a small box for less than a dollar.

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