Few pantry staples are as useful — or as inexpensive — as baking soda. At around $1 a box, this ingredient will quickly become your new favorite beauty go-to. From homemade toothpaste to a cleaner for your makeup brushes, here are 11 easy ways to include baking soda in your beauty routine.
1. As a toothpaste
Store bought toothpaste can contain chemicals that do more harm to your body than good. Instead, try a homemade version using baking soda. Combine 2/3 cup baking soda with one teaspoon of fine salt and 10 to 15 drops of peppermint essential oil in a glass container. Add filtered water to achieve your desired thickness and use instead of regular toothpaste. The baking soda helps kill germs and freshen breath, while the salt restores minerals to teeth.
2. To prep for a manicure
Before you paint your nails, dip a nail brush into baking soda and scrub under and around your nails to clean them. You can also combine three parts baking soda with one part water to create an exfoliating paste for smoother hands.
3. As a deodorant
Combine four tablespoons of baking soda and about 10 drops of your preferred essential oil to create a homemade deodorant. Apply the combination with a recycled (and cleaned) makeup brush. For travel, use a clean mineral makeup container to reduce the likelihood of a spill.
4. To soothe razor burn
Soothe sensitive, irritated skin after shaving with a solution made from one cup of water and one tablespoon of baking soda. Apply it to your skin and allow to dry. Rinse with cool water and then apply moisturizer if needed.
5. As an exfoliating body scrub
Create an exfoliating body scrub by mixing three parts baking soda with one part water and one part ground oatmeal. The combination makes for a soothing and nourishing body scrub. Simply rub in a gentle, circular motion in the shower before rinsing with warm water. Be sure to buy gluten-free oats if you’re sensitive – not all oatmeal is gluten-free.
6. To remove hair product buildup
Even the most natural hair products can leave buildup behind. Add about half a teaspoon of baking soda to your palm, before pouring on shampoo. Wash your hair as usual and rinse well. You should notice the difference immediately, and may even have more voluminous tresses.
7. As a foot soak
Not only can baking soda help soften tough calluses on your feet but it can also neutralize acids on your skin. Add it to your foot soak or use a 1/2 cup in your entire bath for a purifying experience. Repeat the manicure treatment mentioned above on your feet before you paint your nails.
8. Instead of commercial dry shampoo
Use baking soda on its own or with a few drops of essential oil to keep the oil away on mornings you just can’t seem to get out of bed in time for a shower. If you have light hair, baking soda on its own will go unnoticed.
Brunettes should add unsweetened cocoa powder to the mix to avoid looking like they suddenly have gray hair. You can make a large batch ahead of time by combining equal parts baking soda and cocoa powder. Orange essential oil is a nice complementary oil for the faint chocolate smell your hair may have after application.
9. To clean makeup brushes
Fill a bowl with warm water and two teaspoons of baking soda. Wash each brush individually by swirling it in the bowl. After you swirl each in the solution, leave brushes to soak for 20 minutes before rinsing them with clean water. Allow them to air dry on the counter before putting them away.
10. As a pimple spot treatment
To get rid of annoying pimples, create a paste from baking soda and a little bit of water. Apply it as a spot treatment and let it sit for 15 minutes. Then, rinse the baking soda off with warm water and pat your face dry with a clean towel. This same baking soda paste can also help fade acne scars.
11. To treat toenail fungus
Baking soda is alkaline in nature, and since toenail fungus thrives in an acidic environment, baking soda is the perfect solution for getting rid of it. Simply blend baking soda with some arrowroot powder, and a couple of drops each of tea tree oil, basil oil, and sage oil to create a paste. Apply this paste to your nails each day before putting on socks and shoes. Try sprinkling some baking soda in your shoes when you aren’t wearing them to absorb odors and kill any lurking fungus.
While this list is certainly not exhaustive, these 11 hacks will not only bring more beauty into your life but will improve your health.
What is your favorite baking soda beauty tip? Let us know in the comments.