June 6, 2012


You thought you knew everything about your good friend baking soda. She's your trusty baking sidekick that gave your cakes a rise and your cookies their sweet, sweet tenderness. What you may not know is that baking soda is living a secret life. Several, in fact. Baking soda be getting around town and getting into everyone's business. Shameless powdery hussy!

Okay, so that might be a bit dramatic. We all know that baking soda can help whiten teeth or create fake volcanic explosions, but did you know that it's versatility goes far beyond that? I've been thinking a lot about how to integrate more natural house cleaning and personal care routines in my daily life and baking soda keeps popping up again and again. I'm so fascinated by ordinary things that can have multiple uses in everyday life. I have a feeling that soon enough I'll be buying this stuff by a 10 lb bag and chucking it all over my house.

Today I thought I'd share with you some of my new favourite ways to use this unsuspecting Jack-of-all-trades:

AfterBite alternative: Create your own anti-itch paste by mixing 3 parts soda with 1 part water. Apply to those dastardly bites. Don't use on broken skin though because no.

At home microdermabrasion: Same measurements as the anti-itch paste. Apply to face and rub gently in circular motion. After fully applied to face allow to sit for a few minutes. Rinse off with warm water.

Powder cleanser: I love me some Comet but that stuff is toxic as hell. Plus, it always leaves behind a grainy residue the gives me the hebejeebees. Swap out the green can with the orange box and your cleaning situation is a lot less yucky.

Thermos de-stanker: I will not drink from a stale smelling thermos. I can't. The stink become the taste and then its all 'Welcome to Gagsville'. Used a mixture of hot water and baking soda to remove the smelliness from your canteen.

Remove stovetop burns: Sprinkle stains with a generous dusting of powder. Pour some boiling water on top and let sit for a few minutes. Gently scrub away stains using a dish washing scrubber.

Drain clean: Drop one cup of soda followed by one cup of hot vinegar down a clogged drain. Blamo!

Air neutralizer: It's not that I want to add anything to the air I breathe - it's more that I want to take something out of it. Fill a clean used glass jar about half way with baking soda, poke some holes in the lid and twist shut. Let it sit in a your offensive smelling room and let the powder do it's job.

Oven cleaner: My oven is not self cleaning and I am terrified of the can of cleaner stashed under my sink. End result - a very messy oven. Very messy. I'm going to try and ammend this cleaning faux pas by sprinkling spraying inside of oven with warm water, combine 1 cup of soda and 1/3 cup table salt and sprinkle over water. Let this sit overnight and wipe away the mess in the morning.

These are just some of the many uses out there. If you have any favourite uses for baking soda I'd love to hear all about it! Or if you have another favourite multi-purpose tool be sure to mention it in the comments below.