12 Surprising Benefits of Baking Soda for Health and Beauty

You probably already use it in the kitchen, and maybe even to tackle household cleaning projects. But have you heard of the benefits of baking soda for your beauty and health? Check out these easy tricks.

1 / 12
baking soda on wooden table

DIY Dry Shampoo

Whether you’re running late in the morning or giving your hair a break from washing, dry shampoo absorbs grease and refreshes hair—no shower necessary. You can buy dry shampoo, but it’s easy to make at home, too:

Mix equal parts baking soda and corn starch (just enough for one use, or store a bigger batch in a jar). Use your fingertips to massage the powder into your scalp and roots. Let sit for at least 10 minutes to allow the starch to absorb oils, and brush out. Did you know that apple cider vinegar makes a good natural shampoo?

2 / 12
Young woman brushing her teeth at mirror

Brush Your Teeth

You may already use baking soda to scour and brighten countertops, and the same cleaning action applies with your teeth. Baking soda provides a gentle abrasion that cleans without the chemicals found in many mainstream toothpastes.

To brush with baking soda, simply wet your toothbrush, add a sprinkle of soda, and brush teeth as usual. As always, use a soft brush and don’t brush too vigorously.

3 / 12
Asian women are mouthwash after brushing teeth in the bathroom.

Natural Mouthwash

If you’re not ready to give up the minty freshness of traditional toothpaste, you can still take advantage of the dental-polishing powers of baking soda. A teaspoon of baking soda dissolved into a half cup of water makes a refreshing mouthwash. Check out more natural breath fresheners here.

4 / 12
Homemade face mask made out of lemon juice, honey and baking soda on wooden background

Exfoliating Face Mask

Boasting both anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties, baking soda can give skin a deep, exfoliating clean. Enjoy a soothing ritual by applying a DIY baking soda face mask. Here’s our favorite recipe.

Don’t have time to DIY? Biore’s Blue Agave + Baking Soda Cleanser ($6) does just the trick.

5 / 12
Beautiful young woman after shower at home.
Africa Studio/Shutterstock

DIY Natural Deodorant

Baking soda doesn’t just mask odor—it actually absorbs it. Many natural deodorants rely on baking soda to banish odor without harmful chemicals. Make your own DIY deodorant at home: Mix four tablespoons of baking soda with four tablespoons cornstarch. Stir in six tablespoons of coconut oil to form a spreadable paste. Add a few drops of essential oils to add fragrance. This will keep indefinitely in a jar; apply with a finger as needed.

6 / 12
Person putting on pair of shoes.

Zap Odors

The proverbial box of baking soda in the back of the fridge is a pro at soaking up strong smells. You can actually zap smelly shoes with a sprinkle of baking soda! You can also use baking soda in the laundry hamper or to deodorize your workout bag between uses.

7 / 12
Many of mosquito bites sore and scar on little child legs who sitting on bed

Relief for Irritated, Itchy Skin

Have a minor rash or pesky bug bite? The alkaline level of baking soda helps to neutralize toxins, which can relieve itching. Wash the bite with soap and water. Then, blend baking soda with enough water to form a paste and apply directly to the spots. (Mix with witch hazel for extra soothing relief.) Cover with a bandage and let the baking soda work its magic. Here are 50 more ways to use baking soda around the house.

Cream of tartar is also great for helping out your skin. But what exactly is cream of tartar?

8 / 12
Girl dilutes the baking soda in a glass of water

Calm Stomachaches and Heartburn

Baking soda is a natural antacid, which means it can neutralize the stomach acids that cause aches and heartburn. For adults, mix 1/4 teaspoon of baking soda in a glass of water. Sip slowly. (Psst! Most popular over-the-counter effervescent tablets also contain some baking soda.) Find more heartburn remedies here.

9 / 12
Women soak foots in the tub to relax and ready for cutting nails.

Relaxing Foot Bath

Soak your aching stems after a long day on your feet. Simply dissolve four tablespoons baking soda in about a quart of warm water. Drop in feet. Exhale.

10 / 12
Splinter, woman
Image Point Fr/Shutterstock

Easy Splinter Removal

Don’t dive after a deep splinter with tweezers! This easy trick coaxes the splinter out on its own, resulting in less irritation. Make a soak by dissolving 1/4 cup baking soda in a cup of water. Then, soak the affected area until the splinter is easy to remove.

11 / 12
Young man suffering from strong headache or migraine sitting with glass of water in the kitchen

Migraine Pain Relief

To relieve migraine pain, and even nausea that can accompany a migraine, try drinking a glass of water with one teaspoon of baking soda stirred in. Or, if you’d rather try a topical approach, a soak in a baking soda-laced bathtub can provide relief.

12 / 12

Clean Brushes and Beauty Tools

Let baking soda loosen the gunk on combs and makeup brushes, no scrubbing required. Combs, brushes, makeup applicators and other beauty tools are easy to clean in a baking soda bath. Mix four tablespoons baking soda with a quart of water and leave to soak overnight. Rinse and wipe clean.

Love natural cleaning tips? Try these 30+ vinegar ideas.

Note: Every product is independently selected by our editors. If you buy something through our links, we may earn an affiliate commission.

Kelsey Rae Dimberg
A former in-house editor at Taste of Home, Kelsey now writes, cooks and travels from her home base of Chicago. After going gluten-free over a decade ago, Kelsey turned to home cooking and baking as a way to recreate her favorite foods. Her specialties include gluten-free sourdough bread, pizza and pastry. When not wrangling her toddler, she enjoys reading, watching old movies and writing. Her debut novel, Girl in the Rearview Mirror, was published by William Morrow in 2019, and her second is forthcoming.