If you thought you knew everything there was to know about baking soda then think again! Here are 10 wonderful uses of baking soda
While there are literally hundreds of uses for baking soda, we’ve compiled a list of the top 10 most useful ways in which baking soda can make life easier for you.
- Deodorise Cupboards, Store Rooms and Fridges
Place an open box of baking soda in the back of the fridge, top shelf of storerooms or in the linen closet to neutralize odours and to keep everything smelling fresh. Make sure to change the box at regular intervals.
- Clean Brushes and Combs
Did you know that every time you brush your hair, you leave behind natural oil and other residue from your scalp? Strip away the oils and hair product residue by regularly soaking combs and brushes in warm water with 1 teaspoon of baking soda. You’ll be amazed at what comes away. Rinse, repeat if necessary and dry.
- Treat Insect Bites and Itchy Skin
Baking soda has a soothing effect on itchy skin since it is a natural acid neutralizer and has anti-inflammatory properties. Treat itchy skin by rubbing some baking soda directly onto the damp affected area after a shower and wash off after 10 minutes. For insect bites, make a paste out of baking soda and water and apply it onto the bite for a few minutes before washing off. You can also soak in a bath of warm water and baking soda for very itchy skin all over. However, be careful not to use baking soda on broken skin or open wounds.
- Hand & Foot Softener
Rub some baking soda onto your hands and feet and mix with water to make a paste. Rub the paste all over your hands and feet and rinse for baby soft skin effect. Bonus – you’ll get rid of any funny odours on your hands and feet too. For pedicures, add a few drops of your favourite essential oil to the baking soda for a pleasant fragrance and soak your feet in a tub with warm water and the mixture. Scrub your feet to get rid of rough areas and dead skin.
- Soft Scrub for Cleaning Most Surfaces
Scrub floors, bathroom tiles, kitchen counters and even sinks with baking soda and you’ll see a marked difference with the results. Simply sprinkle baking soda directly onto the surface, sprinkle with water and scrub with a damp cloth. Rinse and wipe dry. Repeat if necessary (sometimes the powder residue shows up again after a few hours of mopping floors, so don’t be alarmed) – you’ll end up with gleamingly floors!
For cleaning and deodorising ovens and microwaves, rub a paste of baking soda and water on the sticky surfaces of the oven and let sit overnight. Scrub in the morning and rinse thoroughly. Repeat if required.
- Deodorise Cutting Boards and Carpets
Sprinkle baking soda lavishly on cutting boards and carpets and set aside for a couple of hours (leave baking soda on carpets overnight if possible). For cutting boards, scrub with a heavy brush and rinse. For carpets, vacuum as normal. Bonus – the vacuum cleaner gets deodorised at the same time too and eliminates odours.
- Strip Away That Grease
Hate having to scour spilled grease from burnt dishes? Now you don’t have to. Make a paste of 2 tablespoons of baking soda, liquid dish soap and a little coarse salt (for extra power) and apply directly onto the dish or pot. Set aside for some time and wash as normal – wash the grease strip effortlessly from the surface.
You can also clean up minor oil spills in the garage and driveway by sprinkling over them with baking soda and lightly brushing it away.
- Deodorise and Unclog Drains
What’s the best way to recycle those used boxes of baking soda from the fridge and cupboards? Pour the baking soda down drains and wash down with hot water. It will neutralise unpleasant smells from the drain and also help unclog any residue that may have been building up over time. You can also try pouring vinegar after the baking soda. And it’s much cheaper than normal drain cleaning detergents! However, if there isn’t enough fizz from the stale, used boxes of baking soda, then open a fresh box and follow the instructions.
- Fresh Smelling Sneakers (and shoes)
Got sweaty, smelly sneakers? Keep unpleasant smells at bay by liberally powdering them with baking soda between uses. Simply shake out your sneakers before use and wear as normal. You can do the same with any pair of shoes that need de-odorising.
- Clean Crayon Marks from Walls
And we’ve saved the best for last! If you’ve got children, chances are you’ve pulled out your hair more than once thanks to crayon streaks marking your walls. Now you can get rid of them as quickly as they appear. Simply sprinkle baking soda on a damp cloth and rub the crayon marks lightly. Wipe off with a clean, dry cloth and repeat if necessary.
So there you have it! Our top 10 uses for baking soda. But that doesn’t mean that there are no more uses for this humble miracle worker. Use the baking soda to clean and deodorise your shower curtains, trash cans, pet litter and bedding as well
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Written for Parents World by Priyanka Elhence. Priyanka is a busy mom of 9 yr old twin boys. She writes on anything from lifestyle and dining to parenting and celebrity profiles.