Next time you buy baking soda, you’d better stock up and get the big box—it has a wide range of uses that expand beyond cooking. Check out our 24 household uses for baking soda.
You’ve probably seen “with baking soda” on several toothpastes at the store, but did you know you could use baking soda by itself as toothpaste? Just make your own paste and you can even add a little sea salt and watch your smile get brighter. Here’s a recipe for homemade toothpaste.
2. Remove hair product residue.
Simply add a dash of baking soda to your shampoo to get your hair extra clean and remove all that residue that hair products leave behind. Add 1 tablespoon of baking soda to enough shampoo for one cleaning and wash as usual. Another option is to make a paste with the baking soda, rub into hair, rinse and then shampoo.
3. Make towels and linens fresher.
Add some baking soda to your regular washing cycle to freshen up those dull towels and linens, especially if they’ve been sitting in a cabinet for a while and need a pick me up. Here’s how to freshen your laundry with baking soda.
4. Freshen stuffed animals.
Your little cuddlies can get a little musty at times. Especially for those stuffed animals not able to be washed, baking soda is a great way to freshen them up. Simply sprinkle some all over it and let it sit. It will get rid of odors and be ready for love again in no time.
5. Remove carpet odor.
If you have pets or kids, or a carpet spot where a lot of people walk through, your carpets are likely to get used and abused. To remove smells, sprinkle with baking soda and let it sit for a while. Real Simple’s 8 Surprising Household Deodorizers says overnight is best—and then vacuum it up.
6. Clean cloth diapers.
In an effort to reduce waste, cloth diapering has recently become more popular. Although they are great to use, they are not fun to clean, especially if your baby has sensitive skin. To get them whiter and neutralize acidity, according to Real Diaper Association, add baking soda to your wash.
7. Clean the oven.
Store bought oven cleaners are extremely harsh and stinky. Go all natural and use vinegar and baking soda! Scrape off the big chunks, pour some vinegar, add baking soda and watch the magic happen! Let it sit for at least 30 minutes and then wipe clean. Here are instructions for cleaning your oven with baking soda.
8. Soothing bath.
You’ve probably heard of the benefits of bath salts, but did you know baking soda can help, too? Just add ½ a cup to your bath to help your body balance itself (Western diets are notorious for being too acidic), including washing off oils and perspiration and making your skin silky smooth. Here are a few ideas for a baking soda bath, including baking soda bath recipes.
9. Relieve yeast infection.
The embarrassing itchiness of a yeast infection is no fun. Sooth it by taking a bath in hot water with baking soda. Read more here: Benefits of baking soda bath: relieve yeast infections.
10. Clean grease out of leather furniture.
If you don’t notice a grease spot on your leather couch until it has dried, sprinkle some baking soda on the grease and let sit for a few hours; the baking soda will absorb it. Then just brush off the baking soda with a rag. See instructions here: How To Clean Leather Furniture.
11. Clean shower curtains.
Shower curtains get a lot of use. Keep them clean and fresh by washing them with an all natural cleaner! Baking soda does a great job. Throw it in the washing machine with some baking soda, or get out your scrub brush and use it just like you would a cleanser (add a little water to make a paste). Here’s more information: Best Ways to Clean a Shower Curtain.
12. Take the stink out of your fridge.
Baking soda is great at neutralizing odors; just stick an opened box of baking soda in the fridge and it’ll absorb any smells (also make sure you remove any old food). This also works well for outdoor trashcans.
13. Deodorize the kitty litter box.
According to the Humane Society, pour a layer of baking soda on the bottom of your kitty’s litter box before adding litter as usual. Baking soda will absorb any smells that make there way to the bottom. If you don’t have time to clean it out as usual on a particular day, sprinkle some baking soda on top to take away the smell until you can clean it completely (don’t wait too long!). Read more here: Preventing Litter Box Problems.
14. Put out grease fires.
The worst thing you can do in the case of a grease fire in the kitchen is to throw water on it; and if you don’t have an extinguisher handy then you need something quick and effective. Baking soda is already in your kitchen, so make sure to keep it near the stove. It will smother and cool the fire at the base of the flame. Here’s more information on Kitchen Safety: How to Put Out a Grease Fire.
15. Fruit and veggie wash.
Make a mixture of water, vinegar, baking soda and lemon juice and rinse your produce in it. This natural mixture will remove a lot of the pesticides and things that get onto the fruits and vegetables during growing, processing, or placing in the store. Here’s more information on Cleaning Fruits and Vegetables: Organic or Conventionally Grown.
16. Clean batteries.
Sometimes batteries on cars get corrosion build-up. Baking soda can neutralize it. Start by disconnecting the battery, and making a paste of baking soda and water. Using a damp cloth or old toothbrush, scrub the area with the paste until clean. Check out the these step by step instructions: How to Clean Corroded Car Battery Terminals.
17. Freshen shoes.
Check out this method for deodorizing shoes: sprinkle with baking soda, put in a plastic bag, and place in the freezer overnight.
18. Diaper rash care.
Use baking soda to help relieve a diaper rash. Check out this method to cure diaper rash. When a baby has a bad rash, each time the diaper is changed, dip a washcloth in baking soda dissolved in water, and wash the baby’s bum. Dry it with another cloth and put on the clean diaper.
19. Curb sugar cravings.
This one may be too good not to try—The Old Farmer’s Almanac suggests that when you get a craving for sweets, baking soda can help. Dissolve one teaspoon in a cup of warm water, then rinse out your mouth (no swallowing).
20. Remove bugs from your car.
Spot washing the bugs off your car is the most effective way to remove them (do it before a regular car wash). Dissolve baking soda completely in water and use it as a spot wash and say goodbye to the dead bugs. Here’s how to use baking soda to prewash a car.
21. Soften your toothbrush.
If your toothbrush is getting a little crusty, simply soak it overnight in warm water and baking soda to clean and soften it.
22. Relieve insect bites.
Don’t itch those bites! Get some relief with a baking soda and water mixture. Simply apply it to the bite. Follow the directions here: Home Remedies for Mosquito Bites.
23. Deter ants.
When you create a line with baking soda, ants won’t cross it. So put it around the perimeter of your house to keep ants at bay.
24. Relieve sunburn.
Fill up the bath with water and add baking soda for sunburn relief. It will cool the skin and help it retain moisture.