December 30th is National Bicarbonate of Soda Day.
Try to contain yourselves. While I know you are thrilled by the prospect of celebrating such an important day, please remember that you have a meager 120 days to prepare. We’ve got work to do.
So why this post? I must confess that I’m a tiny bit obsessed with baking soda. But as weird as this obsession is, it is a little lighter on the pocket book than, say, shoes. Or expensive Pomeranians. So I guess we’re in the clear. I like baking soda because I do a LOT of baking, and because I use it as a very cheap way to clean just about everything. I even like the design on the box. The literalness of the arm and hammer make me feel safe.
1. Get rid of product build-up in hair. Once a week add 1 tsp of baking soda to your shampoo. This will get rid of residue left from hair styling products.
2. Gentle, everyday face wash. Take 2-3 tsp. of baking soda and mix it with a little warm water in your palm to make a paste. Apply to your face with your fingers or a facial brush (Ever used one? They’re delightful), then rinse. This is an excellent, gentle everyday wash and also good if you’re on a pinch, say camping or on vacation and you forget your usual face wash.
3. Soothing bath. Add ½ cup of baking soda to your next bath. It neutralizes acids on your skin, gets rid of grime, and leaves your skin feeling soft and soothed. If you’re not up to a full-body commitment than try adding some to your foot soak (a few TBSP should do the trick). No need for soap!
4. Freshen breath. If you’ve got some serious bad breath put 1 tsp of baking soda in a glass of water, then swish and spit. This will neutralize the bad breath odors (not just cover them up with minty goodness).
5. Clean nails. Dip a wet nailbrush into baking soda then scrub your nails. This cleans nails and softens cuticles.
6. Clean your brushes and combs. This is important for manageable air. Get rid of product and oil build up by soaking brushes/combs in warm water and 1 tsp water. I like to just do this in the sink. Rinse and allow to air dry.
7. Dry Shampoo. Sometimes things get desperate. If you have greasy hair and about 4 minutes before your book club comes over, sprinkle a little on your hair brush and brush through hair to remove oil.
8. Whiten teeth. Sprinkle a little baking soda on your toothpaste loaded toothbrush and brush like normal. This will whiten teeth and really freshen breath.
9. Stop heartburn and indigestion. Completely dissolve ½ tsp of baking soda into 4 oz of water. Down the hatch. It neutralizes the acids in your body. (Check with your doctor on this one, particularly if you are on a sodium restricted diet or on prescription medications.)
10. Treat insect bites. Apply a paste made of baking soda and water to affected area.
This is what I really love about baking soda—it basically absorbs, eats and digests bad smells like some kind of greedy little monster. Here are some ideas for using it as a deodorizer:
11. Refrigerator. Put an open box in your refrigerator and change regularly. This also works in closets and cars.
12. Shoes. Sprinkle some in stinky shoes and let sit (shake out before wearing).
13. Garbage cans. Sprinkle baking soda into garbage cans between bag changes then scrub can out every so often with baking soda and water. (This one really works!)
14. Carpet. Sprinkle liberally onto stinky carpet, let sit overnight (or a few hours) and then vacuum up.
15. Pet bedding. Sprinkle on, let sit, then vacuum off.
16. Laundry. Deodorize really stinky wash (think gym clothes, or campfire clothes) by adding ½ cup of baking soda to rinse cycle.
17. Stuffed animals. Freshen up teddy by sprinkling baking soda on, allowing to sit, then brushing off.
18. Toilets. Sprinkle baking soda into bowl then add vinegar. Allow to fizz then scrub and flush. This works so well!
19. Bath tub. Sprinkle baking soda onto sponge, then scrub down surface area and rinse. I love this because then you won’t feel like you’re in a chemical bath during your next soak. (Also works well on shower curtains and the fridge!)
20. Mop bathroom floors. Add ½ cup baking soda to a bucket of warm water and mop up floor.
21. Greasy pots and pans. Add 2 TBSP baking soda along with your regular dish detergent to your soaking pans. Allow to soak then scrub like normal.
22. Oven cleaner. Clean oven by sprinkling it with baking soda, and then spraying with water. Let sit overnight, then scrub oven out in the morning.
23. Dishwasher. Freshen dishwasher by putting 1 cup into dishwasher then running on rinse cycle.
24. Fruit and vegetable scrub. Sometimes those things just look dirty. Sprinkle a little baking soda on a clean, damp sponge and scrub, then rinse. This way you won’t end up with any harmful residues on your food.
25. Put out fires. Baking soda can be very helpful in small kitchen fires. Turn off gas/electricity if possible then throws handfuls on the base of flame.
26. Camping Cure-All. Use to wash hands and dishes, as sun burn and mosquito relief, as deodorant and toothpaste. The list goes on.
27. Cleaning your dog. Give your dog a version of a dry-shampoo wash. Between baths sprinkle baking soda on him, rub it on, then brush him to get it out of his coat. (I need to do this for my rather stinky dog who refuses to be anywhere but on my lap at the moment.)
And because you know I’m not that creative (or clean), here are some fabulous websites I found great tips at: