A while back I wrote about the many ways I use vinegar in our home. And I’ve been saying over and over again that you only need vinegar, baking soda, hydrogen peroxide, and soap for the majority of your cleaning. Well, several people have asked me what I use baking soda for – it’s high time I gave baking soda it’s due!
1. Shampoo Replacement. The number one article here at One Green Generation is A Non-Toxic, Frugal Way To Wash Your Hair Without Buying Shampoo. I explain it all in detail there, and I wrote a follow-up about it here as well. Try it!
2. Deodorant. Another very popular post here is How To Make Your Own Deodorant (A Very Simple Recipe). I encourage you to try that as well – so simple!
3. Air Freshener & Deodorizer. Brilliantly easy, all you need to do is open up a box of baking soda, or dump a pile of it into a bowl, and leave it in an offensively smelling area – your fridge, your closet, your pet area, you car, wherever! (Change it out every 3-6 months.)
4. Carpet and Garment Deodorizer. Just sprinkle a bit over the offensive area and let it sit. A little while later, you can vacuum or shake it out.
5. Counter, sink, and tub Cleaner. Just like using Bon Ami or some other powdered cleaner, sprinkle it onto the surface and rub with a wet cloth. Be careful on delicate surfaces – test it out first to make sure it won’t scratch, though it’s more delicate than most powdered cleaners. To shine the surface afterward, you can spray a bit of vinegar and wipe clean.
6. Jewelry and Silverware Cleaner. You can use a paste of a baking soda mixed with a bit of water (3:1 or so), or if that doesn’t work well enough you can try replacing the water with hydrogen peroxide.
7. Coffee, Tea, Rust, and Hard Water Stain Remover. Scrub with the same 3:1 (baking soda: water) paste, and it should do the trick!
8. Pot and Pan Cleaner. Sprinkle some baking soda onto your rag or sponge, and clean your pots – it will take off many stains.
9. Drain Unclogger. If water hasn’t yet backed up, pour 1 cup of baking soda down, followed by 3 cups boiling water. Repeat if the drain doesn’t clear. If the drain still doesn’t clear, follow with 1 cup of vinegar. This makes it bubble, fizz and usually that does the trick! If this does not work, we usually buy enzymes from the local health food store.
10. Cat Litter Extender. If your cat is persnickety about clean litter, in addition to cleaning the litter daily, you can shake a light layer of baking soda onto the litter and mix it up.
11. Garlic Smell Eliminator. Cutting boards and other surfaces can be cleaned with a thick paste of vinegar and baking soda. Apply this paste and let it sit for 10-15 minutes – it will both clean and deodorize.
12. Bath Softener. If you want to feel extra soft and silky, dissolve 2 cups of baking soda in your bath water. This works well if you have itchy skin from bites or hives also.
13. Exfoliator. I use the same mixture for my hair (above) as a light exfoliator on my face every couple of weeks. It’s quite rejuvenating.
14. Homemade Toothpaste. You can make your own toothpaste by using two tablespoons of baking soda and one tablespoon of peroxide. I don’t do this regularly, but I have done it in a pinch.
15. Denture or Retainer Soak. You can soak these overnight in a glass with water and baking soda. It will leave them clean and deodorized.
16. Fill small holes in Drywall. Yes, I have rented many homes and sometimes you find yourself without spackle. Ah, just mix a bit of white toothpaste with some baking soda and fill the holes! Let it dry completely before you paint or anything – but you might find you don’t need to paint!
17. Fire Extinguisher. Great for a grease fire in the kitchen, a car fire, or another small fire. Just sprinkle it over the fire until the fire goes out. Keep it in your kitchen for sure!
18. Shoe Deodorizer. Sprinkle a small amount in your shoe, or put some in an old sock and tie the sock – then stuff it in your shoe overnight.
19. Ant, Roach, and Flea Deterrent. If you have ants or roaches, sprinkle baking soda in the areas where they are coming in the house. If you have fleas on the lawn, sprinkle baking soda around the areas where you and your pets walk by. This helps. I’ve written other tips for organic ant control here. You can try it with snails and rabbits, too!
20. Cook with it. Lots of yummy things. Like pancakes!
Please Pick Up Where I Left Off!
What else do you use baking soda for?