Squeaky clean hair: Add a teaspoon of baking soda to your usual shampoo bottle to help remove buildup from conditioners, mousses, and sprays, and to improve manageability.
Dry shampoo: For oily hair. Sprinkle on your hair and comb through, then fluff with a blow dryer.
Chlorine remover: Rinse hair with 1/2 teaspoon baking soda in 1 pint water to remove the dullness or discoloration caused by chlorinated pools.
Combs and brushes: Hair spray and oil buildup on combs and brushes can be removed by soaking them in a sink of warm water and adding 3 tablespoons baking soda and 3 tablespoons bleach.
Hands: Remove fish, onion, or garlic odor from hands with a solution of 3 parts baking soda to 1 part water or liquid soap. Rub mixture in your hands, and rinse off.
Elbows: Rub a baking-soda paste (water and baking soda) onto your elbows to smooth away and exfoliate rough skin.
- Soak tired feet in a basin of warm water with 3 tablespoons baking soda
- Add 4 tablespoons baking soda to 1 quart warm water, and soak feet for 10 minutes to relieve foot itch.
- Smooth rough and hardened calluses and heels by massaging them with a paste of 3 parts baking soda per 1 part water.
Soothe minor mishaps:
- For sunburn pain, saturate a washcloth with a solution of 4 tablespoons baking soda in 1 quart water. Apply to affected area.
- Ease windburn or poison ivy irritation with a paste of 3 parts baking soda and 1 part water. Do not use on broken skin.
- Baking soda added to the bathwater has a softening effect on the skin. Add 1/2 cup to a full bath.
- Make bubbling bath salts with 21/2 cups baking soda, 2 cups cream of tartar, and 1/2 cup cornstarch. Mix them together, and store in a covered container. Use 1/4 cup per bath.
Relieve Itchy Wintery Skin: In a bath with 1 cup baking soda and 11/4 cups baby oil in the water.
Sponge bath: Freshen up with a washcloth dipped in a solution of 4 tablespoons baking soda to 1 quart water.
Deodorant: Apply cornstarch to your underarms with a powder puff first, then apply the baking soda.
Clean fingernails and toenails by scrubbing them with a nailbrush dipped in baking soda. This also softens cuticles.
- Mix 3 parts baking soda with 1 part salt. Add 3 teaspoons of glycerin. Add 10 to 20 drops of flavoring (peppermint, wintergreen, anise, or cinnamon) and enough water to make a paste. Spoon into a small, refillable squeeze bottle.
- Sprinkle baking soda into your palm, dip a damp toothbrush into it, and brush your teeth.
Refreshing mouthwash: To freshen breath, use 1 teaspoon baking soda in 1/2 glass of water, swish the solution through your teeth, and rinse.
Dentures and other dental appliances:
- Soak dentures in a solution of 2 teaspoons baking soda dissolved in warm water.
- Use baking soda to soak athletic mouthguards, retainers, or other oral appliances.
- Scrub dentures, mouthguards, and retainers with a toothbrush dipped in baking soda.
- Soak toothbrushes in a baking-soda solution overnight.
Baking soda can also do wonders for your face.
- Make a paste of 3 parts baking soda to 1 part water, and use as a gentle, exfoliating facial scrub after washing with soap and water. Rinse your face clean.
- Mix baking soda with oatmeal in your blender; it makes a great facial scrub.
- Men with sensitive skin may find that a solution of 1 tablespoon baking soda in 1 cup water makes a great pre-shave treatment or a soothing aftershave rinse.
- For instant relief of razor burn, dab on a baking-soda solution.
As you've seen, baking soda is a valuable asset in your health and beauty routine. Keep some in your medicine cabinet.