Alright people, listen up. How many of you are aware of all the toxins and environmental pollutants that are present in our cleaning and beauty products? The worst part is that all of these toxins end up in our water systems! It's no wonder, then, that so many dolphins and sea creatures (including the ones that we eat) have been found to have a high concentration of pesticides and other chemicals in them.
So, what can you do? Obviously, dumping everything into the trash is not the best way of going about it. What you can do, though, is make small differences in various aspects of your life to ensure that you live as chemical-free a lifestyle as possible, which helps the environment a bit (on top of being cheaper and healthier for you).
Many of you already know about the miracle worker, baking soda. For those of you who don't know much about it, it's literally the most common item found in all households. Just a pinch of baking soda can do wonders for your well-being (I kid you not!). You can also experiment with it and come up with new DIY ideas, which can be helpful in amping up your beauty and lifestyle! Here are 16 secret uses of baking soda that are sure to transform your life.
16 Helps reduce acidity
The symptoms of an upset stomach can range from heartburn to irregular bowel movements to constipation. These symptoms can be further worsened if you have coffee, alcohol or citrus fruits after a heavy dinner. These foods are acidic and they can exacerbate what is already troublesome for your stomach.
In that case, just add a pinch of baking soda when you’re cooking dishes that are acidic in nature. You can also mix half a teaspoon with water and drink it to prevent an stomach upset. Also, if you want to increase the alkalinity of your body, you can opt for drinking this mixture on a daily basis. It can help you prevent acid reflux and maintain a healthy stomach in the long term.
15 Removes those very stubborn stains
There are some stains which simply refuse to go away, even after you’ve scrubbed it for what feels like an eternity. You can now remove these tiresome stains easily by making a paste with baking soda and water. Or, you can also sprinkle some powder on the stain and then wash it. The most appropriate baking soda paste consists of one part of water and three parts of baking soda.
When you mix it with water, it gains abrasiveness, owing to its crystalline properties. This can work wonders when you've got stubborn stains on your coffee mug or on your brand- new dress. If you're washing clothes with a washing machine, you can add a little baking soda along with your detergent, so that there is no sign of a stain on your cloth.
14 Keeps your stuffed toys fresh
You wouldn't want your little one to have dirty stuffed toys, would you? Of course not! Unclean dolls have a tendency to cause infectious diseases. But, baking soda easily absorbs oil from the toys and keeps your baby's toys deodorized. Sprinkle some baking soda on all your child's dolls and place them inside a large bag. Then, shake the bag in such a manner that the baking soda evenly spreads to all the parts of the dolls. Leave the bag alone for an hour. Then, take the dolls out and brush off the baking soda with a damp towel. Once again, place all the dolls inside the bag and leave it inside the dryer for a few minutes. Voilà! You'll have brand-new toys in your hand! And it also keeps germs at bay. Yay!
13 Fights bad breath and plaque
Bad breath is a definite turn off. Often, people don't tell you that you have bad breath. Only your trusted near and dear friends will. So, what if your job requires you to meet strangers daily and you have the problem of bad breath? Mix baking soda with water, gargle the mixture and then spit out. There you go! This simple technique can prevent bad breath and also remove plaque from your teeth. Additionally, you can crush a ripe strawberry and mix it with half teaspoon of baking soda to get a ready-made paste, which you can use daily as a teeth whitener. You can also make a natural toothpaste by mixing baking soda with half a teaspoon of hydrogen peroxide.
12 It gives you fluffier omelettes
Omelettes are the simplest dishes to prepare, aren't they? And, what is the easiest way to get a fluffy omelette? While cooking, just add approximately half a teaspoon of baking soda for every three eggs. Baking soda, being alkaline, can reduce the acidic nature of eggs. But, the amount of baking soda to be used is a concern. If you use too little, the eggs won't become fluffy. If you use too much, your omelette might taste like baking soda. And if that happens, you can neutralize the taste of baking soda by adding a few drops of lemon juice to the eggs. With practice, you can master the skill of preparing fluffy omelettes with this natural ingredient!
11 Removes residue from makeup brushes
Every girl loves makeup—be it an elaborate party makeup look, or just some blush applied to the cheeks. But, the most irritating thing about makeup is the residue you get on your makeup brush, which—let's be honest—we've used to death. Most of us keep wondering whether there is an easy way to clean the brushes.
Well, you can now clean your brushes rather speedily with an ingredient found in the storeroom of your house. Simply mix half a teaspoon or one spoonful of baking soda with a cup of water. Next, soak your makeup brushes and leave it for few minutes. Then, take them out, wash with ordinary water and let them dry. The next time you use a brush, it'll look like a newly purchased one, I promise!
10 It's a relief for insect bites and bee stings
Insect bites or bee stings can become infected and/or painful if left unattended. Sure, you can buy expensive ointments for a simple wound treatment. But, what if we told you that the venom of a bee sting is said to be acidic and baking soda can easily neutralize its effects? Just dab some baking soda on the wound and leave it for a while. This will cure any kind of insect bite or bee sting. You can also make a thick paste by mixing the baking soda in water, in case the sting becomes too itchy. A natural cure, which doesn’t burn a hole in the pocket (or require you to call 911 unless you have serious allergies), is definitely one we can all use a little more.
9 You smell good throughout the day!
You don't need me to tell you that our body tends to smell bad, especially in the summer season. You perspire a lot and your body emanates the odor of sweat mixed with the costly deodorant that you use. Not to mention the hundreds of toxins we expose our body to on a daily basis in the name of smelling good! As you may have guessed, there is a natural alternative that can be used as a perfume.
Since most perfumes and deodorants contain harmful chemicals that can damage your skin in the longer run, opting for baking soda is a good idea. You need to dissolve one teaspoon of baking soda in water. Tap it gently under your arms and leave it for a few minutes. You can also try mixing one cup of baking soda with six parts of cornstarch. This mixture can prevent body odor and also keep you from soaking your clothes in sweat.
8 Get rid of the mildew smell on your books
Old books have a certain charm to them. For some, the smell of an old book is addictive. But, for others, it's the feel of the pages that's their most distinctive feature. Unfortunately, there are a few books that manage to accumulate fungal infection (mildew) as years pass by. This mildew is caused by dampness. You can easily identify wetness in old books if the pages are stuck together or if there is any discoloration along the edges. So, if you've got old books and don't know how to get rid of the musty smell, worry not. There is a simple technique to eliminate the fungi. Fill a paper bag with three teaspoons of baking soda and place the book in it. Leave it aside for a couple of hours. You can also sprinkle some baking soda in between the pages, if you wish. This will leave your book smelling fresh, so you can bury your face in it again.
7 Make your skin smoother
Next time you bathe, don’t forget to add half a cup of baking soda to your bathing water. Not only it will make your skin smooth, but it will also make it glow. You can also try preparing a natural face pack with baking soda. Blend one cup of baking soda, two cups of oatmeal and a few drops of honey in the mixer, until they become a thick paste. Apply this paste to your face and rest for 15 minutes. Then, rinse thoroughly with water and wipe with a clean towel. Baking soda is also said to be a natural exfoliator. So, it can be used as a scrub regularly. Alternatively, you can add a few drops of lemon juice to baking soda and use it to remove blackheads.
6 Treat minor diaper rashes
Diaper rashes are commonly found in babies. After the long usage of diapers or nappies, a baby's tender skin can easily acquire rashes. It can lead to soreness, as a result of bacterial infection. So, if you have babies at home, you can soothe diaper rashes by adding one tablespoon of baking soda to a cup of water. Wash your baby’s sensitive area with this water. Do not rub it very harshly, as it can aggravate the infection. You can also frequently bathe your baby in a bath consisting of one tablespoon of milk, two teaspoons of baking soda and a cup of oatmeal powder to prevent the rashes. But, always be sure to use a smooth towel to tap on the areas.
5 Freshen your refrigerator
A common problem found in every household is bad smell emanating from the refrigerator. So, while cleaning your fridge, use a thick paste of baking soda with water. This can prevent odor, as well as remove any stains found on the racks. For a long-term remedy, place an open box of baking soda at the back of your refrigerator. It can easily absorb the bad smell and deodorize your fridge.
But, remember to replace the box for every two months. Sometimes, it may need replacing sooner than that. In that case, you can date the box, which might help you to remember. Alternatively, you can sprinkle some baking soda on all the racks and leave it for a few hours. This method can be practiced daily.
4 Put out grease fires
Fires can be accidentally caused while cooking or deep frying food. And if it has never happened to you in the past, that doesn't mean it will never happen to you in the future. This is why you need to keep such things in mind. First and foremost, turn off the burner. Then, try to control the fire by covering the pan with a metal lid or another pan. If this doesn't work, throw baking soda onto the fire. A lot of it is needed to completely put out the fire. But, don't ever pour water on it, as it can repel grease and exacerbate the fire. Using baking soda is the quickest remedy ever known! This can also apply to fires caused in the microwave oven. Dump lots of baking soda into it and close it tightly. Lack of oxygen can stop the flames from spreading.
3 It can melt ice instantly!
If you live in a cold country, you'll identify with this problem. Icy staircases and sidewalks during the winter are nothing short of accidents just waiting to happen. Hands up if y'all have slipped at least once one wretched, icy stairs or sidewalks. And if you're the clumsy type who hurts themselves every winter, fret not. Just pay a visit to the garage, find a baking soda box and sprinkle an adequate quantity of it on the steps or the sidewalk (or wherever the heck there is ice that you want to get rid of). Sodium bicarbonate has the natural tendency to prevent traction and melt ice. You can also use it, combined with sand, for a quicker reaction. The great thing about it is that it will not ruin your flooring or shoes, unlike kitty litter or rock salt.
2 Clean your ornaments
Did you know that one of the most awesome uses of baking soda is that it can easily clean your gold or silver ornaments? Not only does it clean them quickly, it also makes them sparkle like they've just been brought out of the jewelry store. So, the next time you worry about your discolored ornaments, just have this handy ingredient by your side. Scrub and rinse your precious jewels with a paste of baking soda and water. You can also polish your gold jewelry, by coating them with a layer of baking soda mixed with a few drops of vinegar. But, you've to be very careful while rinsing jewelry that contain stones or gems, as it can loosen the glue and cause you to lose them.
Oh, and a friendly piece of advice: don't try it on fake jewelry or jewelry with gold or silver plating. Extensive use or even vigorous brushing can result in the jewelry losing its original color.
1 A remedy for damaged hair
Every single girl on this planet faces hair problems (and skin issues) on a daily basis. For hair, it can be one of many things—damaged hair, itchy scalp, dandruff, split ends, oil scalp, frizzy hair. You name it, and we've all faced one of these problems in our lifetime.
So what can one do? Well, add three tablespoons of baking soda to eight tablespoons of water and stir it thoroughly. Wash your hair with warm water and use this mixture as a shampoo. Make sure you always use a conditioner after this, by mixing vinegar with olive oil. Or, if you want, you can use a store-bought conditioner. Then, wash your hair with cold water.
But there are a few things to know in advance. First off, if you have dry or frizzy hair, never use this. It's best suited for those with an oily scalp. And always apply conditioner to your hair afterwards, for a minimum of five minutes. Also, do not use this method more than twice a month.