The blog formerly known as   Fake Plastic Fish

November 4, 2009

Baking Soda: So Many Uses; So Little Money… and Plastic

I hear people bemoaning the high cost of “going green.”  And while organic food does cost more than its chemical-laden counterpart, I’m here to tell you that it’s easier to spend more for healthy food when you save money in other ways.  We can skip many of the green cleaners, deodorizers, and personal care products, most of which are fairly expensive.  To that end, baking soda is our friend. (Ha! I rhymed.)

What’s so great about baking soda?

1) It’s cheap. On, a 1 lb box is $1.40. But I save money and packaging by buying it from the bulk bin at my local natural foods store, filling up my own reusable cloth bag.  That way, it’s only 89¢/lb!

baking soda

2) It’s simple. One of  the ways I try to protect my health and that of the planet is to buy products that contain the lowest number of different ingredients possible.  Baking soda is just about as simple as you can get.

3)  It’s non-toxic. Need I say more?

4)  The packaging is plastic-free. With my method, there’s no plastic at all.  Otherwise, it comes in a biodegradable/recyclable cardboard box.

5)  It’s versatile. Baking soda has over a hundred uses and can substitute for many other more expensive products.  Here are just a few of the ways we use it in our home, as well as a few suggestions from other bloggers and friends.

Personal Hygiene

Deodorant: Baking soda is hands down the best deodorant I have ever used.  After a full day, I have no odor.  Waking up the next morning, still no odor.  I have never found a commercial deodorant that could go that kind of distance, natural or otherwise.  I’m king of evangelical about it, listing it as the first item in this article because if you take away nothing else, baking soda deodorant is the one thing to remember!

So how do I use it?  I keep it in a little metal tea tin in my underwear drawer and apply it with a powder puff after taking a shower.

baking soda

(You should have seen me explaining my little tea tin full of white powder to the TSA agent at the airport security gate last weekend.)  I use it straight without adding any other ingredients.  However, some people find that straight baking soda is too irritating.  If this is you, try combining it with cornstarch or arrowroot powder, which may also act as an antiperspirant.

A note about baking soda and aluminum: I’ve heard rumors here and there that baking soda actually contains aluminum, one of the things we’re trying to avoid by switching away from commercial antiperspirants.  As it turns out, pure baking soda does not contain aluminum.  Baking powder, on the other hand (which is a combination of baking soda with other ingredients) sometimes does.  Check out this explanation of the difference.

Washing Hair: This is one that gets me a few strange looks when I reveal it.  Yes, I wash my hair with baking soda.  To be specific, one tablespoon of baking soda per one cup of water.  I keep it mixed up in a sports bottle in the shower.  And actually, I mainly scrub my scalp rather than my hair with the baking soda solution.  Then, once or twice a week I add an apple cider vinegar rinse (1 T acv to 1 C water.  I also add a few drops of rosemary essential oil).

baking soda

Baking soda/apple cider vinegar  is one of the No ‘Poo methods of hair cleansing you might have heard of, and it works really well for me.  For everything you ever wanted to know about the BS/ACV haircare regimen, check out Babyslime’s definitive guide as well as the whole No ‘Poo forum.

Mouth Rinse: Baking soda and water make a great breath-freshening mouth rinse.  Baking soda helps neutralize acid conditions in the mouth that promote bacterial growth.  It’s those bad bacteria that cause cavities, gum disease, and bad breath.  Go baking soda!

Soaking Retainers/Mouth Guards: It’s ironic that as an anti-plastics activist, I go to bed every night with a mouthful of plastic.  My Invisalign retainers keep my teeth from returning to their scary Jack-o-Lantern pre-orthodontic condition.  I could buy a commercial denture cleaner like Efferdent, but baking soda is cheaper and works just as well.

Toothpaste: I love using baking soda to brush my teeth.  I mix it with stevia for sweetness and a little wintergreen essential oil for taste.

Face and Body Cleanser: Susie Collins of The Canary Report, a blog about Multiple Chemical Sensitivity, told me that many people who can’t tolerate soap wash instead with baking soda, mixing it in a 50%/50% ratio with water.  She also let me know that people with MCS often have difficulty finding pure baking soda that hasn’t been cross contaminated by products with strong scents.  Since baking soda absorbs odors, it could potentially pick up the odor of anything it was shipped or stored near.


Does it really work? That depends on what you mean by “work.”  It’s a great abrasive that  won’t scratch surfaces.  What’s more, a 2005 study found baking soda somewhat effective at killing viruses and concluded that

An advantage of sodium bicarbonate over the available chemical disinfectants for food contact surfaces is its safety, ready availability and low cost. The use of sodium bicarbonate… can be an effective and inexpensive method of disinfecting food contact surfaces.

However, the University of Minnesota study “Hard Surface Cleaning Performance of Six Alternative Household Cleaners Under Laboratory Conditions,” comparing natural alternative cleaners to registered chemical disinfectants, indicates that while baking soda was found to be one of the best at removing kitchen and bathroom soil), it’s is not as effective as vinegar at killing germs, which is why in our home, we scrub with baking soda and then wipe down with a vinegar/water solution when necessary.

Don’t mix baking soda and vinegar!A while back, I read an excellent post by Melanie Rimmer on the blog Bean-Sprouts.  She’s no longer writing the blog, but this post remains and I refer others to it often.  She says:

Other recipes often recommend that you mix vinegar with bicarb to make a sooper-dooper cleaning agent. Actually that would make a lot of impressive looking bubbles but result in something with approximately the cleaning power of salt water. A basic understanding of chemistry (or baking) would help clear some of this up.

Melanie goes on to explain that baking soda neutralizes vinegar (thus counteracting any cleaning power that the vinegar might have), creates a mass of bubbles when CO2 is released (which can be good for creating a volcano or unclogging a drain but not so much for cleaning), and leaves you with a salty mess.

So how do we use it? This is the container we use for sprinkling just the right amount of baking soda for the job.  It’s stainless steel and very sturdy.  I think I got it at one of those kitchen supply stores.

baking soda

Kitchen Surfaces: Baking soda works really well for cleaning dried-on messes from counter-tops and other surfaces.  For the really tough jobs, wet the area, sprinkle the baking soda, and let it sit for several minutes.

Refrigerator: I cleaned my entire refrigerator and freezer using nothing but baking soda, water, and a sponge.  And it didn’t take all day.  Honest.

Dishes: I use baking soda to scour baked-on food from dishes.  Combined with a copper scrubber for tougher jobs, it really works.

baking soda

Coffee/Tea Stained Cups: I received a press release not long ago from a company selling a natural dishwasher gel that was guaranteed to remove “embarrassing coffee and tea stains” from dishes and mugs:

Frustrating indeed, the only recourse is to just soak or scrub those stubborn stays away.  Soaking for hours in chlorine bleach will do the trick, but at an environmental health risk.  Scrubbing with baking soda — well, who has the time?

Um… I do.  I have the time to scrub a little with baking soda.  You know why?  Because it actually doesn’t take long.  It really works.  I’m not left with a plastic bottle to pollute the planet.  (Recycling plastic is actually downcycling.  But that’s a rant for a future post.)  And it’s cheaper!  Besides, because of the rubber bottom, my stainless steel travel mug is not dishwasher safe.  I would have to scrub it by hand anyway.

baking soda

Tea Kettle: Wako Takayama from Everyday Sustainable uses baking soda to clean the grease off the outside of her water kettle.  In her article on washing dishes the green way, she explains that she throws baking soda onto the kettle dry and then wipes it off with a damp sponge.  Apparently, the grease comes right off.  I’m going to try this as soon as I get home!

Burned Pots and Pans: My friend Elizabeth tells me that after burning a pot (which I never EVER do) you can boil water and baking soda for ten minutes and the black stuff comes right out.

Clogged Drains: Crunchy Betty explains how to unclog a drain using baking soda followed by boiling water followed by vinegar.  (The bubbling reaction helps to loosen up whatever is down there.) In our house, we just call our friend Oshi who seems to have a tool for everything and knows how to use it.  It’s good to have your own personal super hero on speed dial.

Bathroom Surfaces and Toilet: Yep, I use it in there too.  So does Lisa from Retro Housewife Goes Green, who thinks that conventional toilet bowl cleaners are so toxic, you should wear safety goggles when using them.


I’ve already mentioned using baking soda as deodorant.  And you probably are aware of how it sucks up odors in the refrigerator.  Here are a few more ideas of ways to deodorize with baking soda.

Carpet: Allie from The Greenists explains how to use baking soda to freshen your carpet.

Cat Litter: We sprinkle baking soda in the litter boxes to keep them smelling fresh between litter changes.

baking soda

Deodorizing Ball: Melissa from The Greenists devised this DIY diaper pail deodorizer ball that could actually be hung anywhere odors arise.  Her recipe includes old panty hose, baking soda, scrap ribbon, sharp scissors, and a spoon.

Other Weird and Wonderful Ways to Use Baking Soda

Dog Urine: Lisa from Condo Blues uses baking soda to repair brown dog urine spots on her lawn.  Really.  The baking soda neutralizes the concentrated amounts of ammonia and nitrogen in the dog urine that burn the grass.

Birkenstock Foot Beds: My friend Phaedra cleans the foot beds of her Birkenstocks with baking soda.  I’m imagining scrubbing with an old toothbrush.  I wonder if it would work as well on my fake Birks.

Vog Acids: Raven Joy from Hawai’i says that she uses baking soda in her “water catch” to alkalize the water “after the vog acids it all up.”  Yeah, I didn’t know either. According to Susie Collins, who also lives in Hawai’i,  “Vog” is the emissions from the volcano, full of toxic sulphur dioxide, that can blanket the island and the state.


Um… there’s also baking with baking soda.  Just don’t confuse it with baking powder in a recipe.  Or make your own baking powder combining baking soda, cream of tartar, and cornstarch.

Other Baking Soda Resources:

Arm & Hammer: The Magic of Baking Soda

The Baking Soda Book: More uses for baking soda than you’ve probably ever imagined.

So, what are your favorite uses for baking soda?

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3 years ago

Please check baking soda’s safery data sheet (data sheets use substance names, so looking for Sodium Bicarbonate
Safety Data Sheet will provide it).

Causes eye irritation, skin irritation so both should be protected. Some countries’ sheets require also respitatory protection and use only in ventilated areas. Hot temperature or high moisture increase its action. Also, it produces carbon dioxide when it reacts with acids.

Doesn’t mean at all that usual products are safer! Only that we should use it with some caution.

It is a wonderful option for many uses, often better and healthier than the stuff we use to find in supermarkets, but it is not innocuous. Very useful for many uses but shouldn’t be used for everything. (About eating it, by cooking or to stop stomach burn, it’s ok in small doses, but can be harmful if not in small doses, or eaten during a large period like daily during more than a week).

About contamination, sheets say it shouldnt be released to the enviroment.

But again, most, if not all, homecleaning and hygiene products we can buy are worse by far. So it’s still a much better choice than most buyable stuff for many uses.

5 years ago

I really want a vegan and plastic free source for baking soda, has anyone found one?
I can’t help but feel terrible for animals as well as the environment when I sacrifice one or the other. Bob’s Red Mill is vegan but in plastic packaging…
Arm & Hammer products are tested on animals but their baking soda can come in cardboard. What are we to do?

5 years ago

I was recently reading an article ( about how baking soda from conventional brands (Arm and Hammer) are synthetic but non-toxic, safe in plastic-free packaging and Bob Mill’s and Frontier are packaged in plastic but come naturally from the ground.

Do you guys know anything about how to pick the right baking soda? Do you factor in the whole lifecycle of a product or only it’s final packaging? This is just one product I use and it is overwhelming! How do you evaluate all products?

8 years ago

Last week I make my silver jewelery look like new with baking soda, it is truly one of the most universal home cleaners.

9 years ago

Baking soda is very versatile, I use it as my shampoo and I have experimented with it as a toothbrush. Keep saying I’m gonna make my own deodorant one day but Lavilin works so well that I can’t seem to stop using it!

9 years ago

Hi Terry, thank you again for so many information! Another use of baking soda is for stomac acidity. In Brazil the sodium bicarbonate is sold in the supermakets, next to the baking section, and also in the pharmacies, in a more fancy package, for when the stomac is acid. And it is very good! Is the number one solution in Brazil for acid stomac. You can use this excuse also when you have to explain the white powder. ;) Hugs, Cris

Mar Hess
9 years ago

Great post! In terms of easy cleaning/scrubbing of teastains or dirty pots with baking soda: I find that the vinegar reaction with baking soda actually does it for you! Simply sprinkle baking soda in the stained cup or on other dirty surface, pour some vinegar and let the environmentally chemical reaction do the work! Depenfing on the amount of dirt you need to scrub a bit after. Also, it helps to stir or swirl the bubbles around a bit over the dirt!

11 years ago

Clean the range drip pans. This was important because they had gotten fairly gunked up because at first I didn’t know how to remove them. Baking soda, an old damp kitchen sponge, & lots of elbow grease later I managed to clean them all well. And they look beautiful – no scratches! Because baking soda is magic – it is mildly abrasive but doesn’t scratch.

12 years ago

You may want to check out a company that makes a beautiful deodorant that incorporates baking soda –

12 years ago

I also use baking soda to wash clothes and I put vinegar in the rinse cycle. I add a few drops of eukalyptus oil with the vinegar as it is supposed to be a disinfectant. I line dry my clothes but they are still soft and have no smell which I like (who wants their clothes to be perfumey smelling anyway?)

Another use is in the dishwasher instead of dish powder. I put about 1/4-1/2 cup in. I also put vinegar in the part that closes (my dishwasher is old and doesn’t have a “Jet Dry” spot or I’d put it there) to reduce spots and cloudiness on glass. I have put some seriously dirty dishes in there and it all comes out squeeky clean.

I just inherited a couch that was sitting on a somewhat indoor porch. I wonder if I can use baking soda with the upholstery cleaner to get the stains and smell out?

13 years ago

I have a skin condition that I am seriously allgeric to all deodorants. You can imagine how many cotton diapers my mother went through. I am trying our baking soda deodorant solution. I hope it works. This is very difficult being a server.

Maura L
13 years ago

I really enjoyed reading your post on baking soda. I then had to go research how it is made and as is the case with so many products, the manufacture process itself has some not-insignificant environmental implications.

We do the best we can and continue to learn and share our knowledge. Thanks again.

Diane MacEachern
14 years ago

Wow! You win the prize for the marathon posting! What I like about baking soda is its simplicity. We call it the “magic powder” around our house. Got a problem? Start with baking soda…!

14 years ago

Joe T., I found that generic brands of baking soda irritate my armpits like you mentioned, but I don’t have that problem with Arm & Hammer brand. The A&H brand seems to be ground (?) finer (I don’t usually find big solid lumps in boxes of it, though I did with a generic brands), and I have no problems using it daily.

Love this post!! Baking soda is pretty awesome stuff :).

14 years ago

Thank you for your outstanding and comprehensive post regarding all the uses for baking soda. While I was familiar with several of your ideas, there were many more wonderful uses that I was not aware of. I stumbled your post too so others can find this useful information.

Cherie Guerrant
14 years ago

Thanks for reminding me of the many uses of baking soda. I’ve purchased non-food grade baking soda at farm supply stores to use for cleaning, etc. Not sure how the price compares to buying bulk at a health food store. Also, thanks for clearing up the problem with mixing baking soda and vinegar. I’ve always thought, “don’t they cancel one another out?”

14 years ago

Fantastic post, thanks for submitting to the MIFS carnival!!

Joe T.
14 years ago

Straight baking soda is too much of an irritant to be used daily (as said in Katy’s reply above and in the linked article describing how to making your own deodorant). Your underarms become red and sore after several days of use and not enough sweating. But the solution is simple. You simply cut it. Half and half. I cut it with baby powder, and have never gotten a rash.

I agree, it’s the best deodorant that exists. Some women complain that they can’t have powder showing for certain garments. But for men, it should be the only deodorant they ever consider using.

I also feel evangelical about this. So simple, so cheap, most effective.

The Green Cat
14 years ago

Beth: interesting that you mention your teeth becoming sensitive with baking soda. I’ve been brushing with baking soda for over a year but recently started to notice some sensitivity (as someone with really bad teeth and a lot of expensive dental work I am very in tune to how my teeth feel). I remember you mentioning that Tom’s has metal tubes so I bought a tube of that. I hope to go back to baking soda in another month or so.

Also, that boiling baking soda in a burnt pot trick totally works! (Unlike you I burn stuff all the time in my cheap pots!)

14 years ago

Toss that toothpaste back out! There is something even better than baking soda. Take a two ounce bottle with an eyedropper – one of those colored glass bottles you can find at most heath food stores. Put in just a drop or two each of pepermint and spearmint essential oils. Fill the rest of the bottle with almond oil. Shake gently to mix. Use the eyedropper to put a little of it on your toothbrush and brush your teeth with that. I have been using this for over a year now. I have heard that over time the oils will soak into your teeth and help prevent plaque from even sticking to teeth. Also I use therepudic grade essential oils and have heard that the pepermint and spearmint help kill germs. This tooth oil is safe to swallow, safe for kids, and even safe for many with chemical sensitivities especially if using all organic ingredients. You can adjust the amount of pepermint and spearmint a bit more or less to taste, but keep in mind that therapudic essential oils are very highly concentrated and I have noticed that if I use too much of them my gums can get a little irritated. If that happens I just dilute the mixture with a little more almond oil.

14 years ago

Great post, Beth! I especially like that you shared the methods instead of just saying “it’s great for washing hair” leaving us to wonder how the heck you actually do that. :) I will be trying baking soda as deodorant when I run out of my Tom’s, I love the tip about cleaning greasy tea kettles, and I’m thinking about the face cleaner too. (I also saw a suggestion about using honey as a facial cleanser somewhere, so I’ll see what works best.) We already use baking soda as a powdered cleanser, but I love your dispenser! I’ll also look for baking soda in bulk. Fingers crossed!

14 years ago

Re: using baking soda to clean silver. Yes, it works, but it can also scratch or damage fine silver. I have a friend who is a Museum Curator and she said that they never use this method as it damages the silver. Also: I suppose that someone will object to this but I generally just use microcloths and water for cleaning (unless you want to disinfect).

14 years ago

As someone who has been cleaning with natural products for over 18 years I have to disagree with the view that baking soda and vinegar do not mix. Chemically they are breaking down quicker but in the breakdown the weak molecules grab other molecules, the best being grease. I have a flat top stove that is hard to clean when greasy. A mixture of baking soda and vinegar cuts the grease like nothing else I have tried. When I have a very clogged drain I first pour baking soda, then vinegar finally I place a plate on top of the drain so the mixture does not bubble up. I have yet to not have this work.
I love baking soda, I even use it in my baths as a water softener.

Condo Blues
14 years ago

Thanks for the shout out! When my dishwasher clogged up, the manufacturer recommended the same baking soda + vinegar + boiling water trick most people use for drains. It works just as well with dishwashers!

14 years ago

I LOVE baking soda … and this post. I recently found out that Arm & Hammer still uses animal testing, though. Are there other brands out there readily available? I’m so used to that yellow box. I was really disappointed to learn this and hope I can find another source.

That bit about coffee stains is too much. I have always been amazed at how completely effortlessly ancient coffee stains come off with a quick swipe of baking soda and water! My secret for hard-to-clean dishes is to sprinkle with baking soda, then a little dish soap. Takes care of grease in no time.

14 years ago

I love this post, Beth. I too am a huge fan of using Baking Soda for just about everything! I have been using it for cleaning since my son was little (close to 20 years now). I also use it in combination with cornstarch and a little tea tree oil as a deodorant powder.
I do make my own ‘toothpaste” ( with it and love how my teeth feel.
The uses for Baking Soda are almost endless and with the savings on cleaning products, it makes it a wonderful addition to a ‘green’ life.

14 years ago

I am a huge fan of baking soda. I also use it as deodorant, cleaning product, with vinegar for clogged drains, to deodorize my daughters stinky shoes, kitty box & as a face cleaner. I can’t wait to try some of the new ideas I got from your blogpost. Thank you!

14 years ago

Chemistry makes it possible, ight?

14 years ago

I love baking soda. I started using it to wash my hair, and also to clean the house. When i finish the tube of toothpaste i currently have, i’m going to give it a go as a toothpaste. My grandma has used baking soda as a tooth paste for years.

14 years ago

I love using baking soda for deodorant too, but I suffer from hyperhidrosis, which causes me to sweat (liquid not just odor) like crazy. Baking soda does great with the odor, but leaves me wet. I recently found this new product called Hyper-Dri sold by Klima Deodorant ( which is the world’s first aluminum-free antiperspirant. It is the only healthy alternative to aluminum based antiperspirants. I just wanted to share this with my fellow readers :)



14 years ago

You can also use it to soak diapers, and you can buy a 50 pound (paper) bag of it for about $10 at a feed/farm supply store.

14 years ago

Thanks for the tips. Love my baking soda and vinegar. I rinse my hair regularly with vinegar. And both products are so inexpensive. I will try the deodorant. When I would swim in the summer, I would wash my body with baking soda to get off all chlorine or anything else lurking from the pool. Good post. Thanks, Linda

Susie Collins
14 years ago

What a great post! And thanks for the two shout outs, that’s so nice of you, Beth. It’s always a pleasure to see Multiple Chemical Sensitivity talked about in a supportive and inclusive manner. I’d love to make a tiny clarification if I could– it’s really the toxic chemicals in modern scent that sometime cross contaminate baking soda in storage facilities and transit, not odors per se. Baking soda is an “MCSers” best friend, and I’m excited to share this post with my readers. Thanks for all the work you do, Beth!

Aloha from Susie @ The Canary Report

14 years ago

We use cloth diapers, so I love baking soda as deodorizer in the diaper pail. A little bit in the diaper wash cycle is also good.

And I love it to scrub the bathtub. There’s nothing better for getting it clean with minimal effort.

14 years ago

Wonderful post! I buy my baking soda in 50-lb bags and use it for everything, too! Thanks for sharing all these great ideas!

14 years ago

Yes to all but the shampoo, I could not get past the initial transition + felt like I was trying to start dreads. Like Kristen above, I use it to exfoliate. Actually, I added more to the baking soda shampoo mixture (in an old shampoo bottle) + it’s great for everyday use…and cheap! My baking soda shaker is an old baby powder bottle, from back when I did not know any better.

Lisa @ Retro Housewife Goes Green
14 years ago

Awesome post!!! And thanks for linking to me. I love baking soda. I don’t have a bulk store to get it from so mine is in a big plastic bag. :( I’m searching for a place with some in bulk bins but no luck so far.

14 years ago

I also use baking soda to exfoliate my face. It is mild enough to use on my face every day and leaves my skin super soft. I wash first with a natural bar soap, exfoliate with baking soda, then follow up with lotion. It has also helped clear up my skin. (I really need to post on this on my blog).

I also do no ‘poo with baking soda and use it to clean my home. When my parents had black mold in their basement, I shook baking soda on the carpets, left it for 30 min., then vacuumed it out to kill the mold spores (baking soda is also anti-fungal). Not only did kill the mold spores, I was surprised by how much dirt came up with it.

Also, did you know that Arm & Hammer has been a green company for over 100 years? Or that they have used recycled materials to make their boxes since the 1930’s? Or that they pioneered the first phosphate free laundry detergent in the early 1970’s? I love supporting this company.

14 years ago

Hi, Beth — Great post! I loooove baking soda. My husband teases me that I think it’ll solve any problem. (“Broken arm? Try baking soda!”)

I wash my hair with it (and use cornstarch to blot grease on the days I don’t wash it) and use it for general scrubbing around the house. I also use it as a laundry detergent (1/2 cup per load) and have never had softer and cleaner clothes. Even my gym clothes don’t stink after a wash! I haven’t had great success with the bs/vinegar “volcano” as a drain cleaner, alas, but I’d rather have a clogged drain than use drano…

Cheap Like Me
14 years ago

This is a great list! I have done the baking-soda hair wash, too, and that was great. I clean everything with baking soda, as well as clearing slow drains with the baking soda/vinegar combo. My baking soda shaker is an old (plastic) peanut-butter jar — I punched holes in the lid to shake out the soda.

14 years ago

It works wonders as a silver polish as well. Make a paste out of baking soda with a bit of water, spread it on your silver, and let it sit about an hour if it’s really badly tarnished. (If it’s not badly tarnished it doesn’t have to sit as long, or at all.) Then just take a cloth and rub it against the silver, rinse it off, and your silver will be very shiny.

14 years ago

Thanks for the post. And thank you for linking to the post about combining baking soda with cornstartch. I tried the baking soda/deoderent tecnique about a year ago and broke out in a rash and after experimenting with the rock, went back to traditional anti-perpernt.

Now, I’ll have to give this new receipe a try!

Graham Meriwether
14 years ago

Great. Thanks for the thorough detail of your post. Looking forward to trying baking soda as a deodorant once my Tom’s runs out.

14 years ago

Another truly excellent post, Beth! And I’ll be trying the boil-water-and baking-soda method you described tonight on a little mishap now resting in my sink, even though, I, like you NEVER EVER burn a pan!

14 years ago

I like your baking soda sprinkler, Beth. I saw something like that at a dollar store or yardsale recently and couldn’t think of a reason why I would have to sprinkle that much powdered sugar. Oh well, next time.
And let us not forget that classic use of baking soda — dousing a kitchen fire (as in stovetop or oven).

14 years ago

Thanks so much for spelling out exactly how you store/dispense your baking soda. Somehow seeing the photos really solidified for me how versatile baking soda can be. I use it as a drain cleaner, an occasional tooth polish and face/body cleaner (not daily), and as a general deodorizer. Now I’ll be looking into using it for deodorant, shampoo, and general cleaner!

14 years ago

Love love love this post. I’ve written a bit about the same topic but I’d never considered using plain baking soda under my arms. Will definitely try it as my current all natural deodorant just isn’t cutting it. And the hair washing technique? Very interesting. Will look into that too.

Will post a link to this post on my site.


14 years ago

Regular baking soda *is* too abrasive for long term use as a tooth powder. I’ve read enough (credible) horror stories online to not want to try that.

However, I use Ipsab tooth powder which includes, along with just a few other things, “finely milled” baking soda. Because it doesn’t contain water, there’s less packaging and it’s a lot cheaper, too. Anyhow, I’ve been really happy with it if you ever want to try something new.

I think I will be trying baking soda as deodorant when my current crystal is used up — though at the rate that’s shrinking it may be years!