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All About Baking Soda

Baking soda is often talked about being an eco-friendly solution to almost anything.  From making your own laundry detergent to scrubbing the counters with it, there are plenty of uses for baking soda.

I wanted to blog about all the wonderful things that I use baking soda for, but as I began making my list lead me to wonder how green baking soda really is.

Here is what I learned about baking soda (thanks to the Greener Cleaner blog and :

- Baking soda comes from a natural source (sodium carbonate) but it's a non-renewable source. However, according to the Enotes article how baking soda is made, the trona deposit  (trona is the primary source of sodium carbonate in the USA) in Green River Basin, Wyoming is large enough to provide the world with baking soda for thousands of years!

- Wyoming is where most of the trona is mined, so it's not something you can buy locally.

- The way that trona is mined is not always eco-friendly, but it can be, depending on the way that it's mined.

As with everything, there are upsides and downsides,  it seems that baking soda is certainly a much greener alternative to regular cleaning solutions.  Plus, it's cheap AND nontoxic! 

So, what can you do with baking soda?

1) Make your own detergent, as mentioned in a previous blog post Doing Your Laundry the Eco-Friendly Way. TipNut has laundry detergent recipes which include baking soda. 

2) Clean your carpet, instead of using those scented powdered carpet cleaners you can get at the grocery store.  Sprinkle it over your carpet, let it sit for a half hour or so, then vacuum.

3)  Scrub your counters with it.  You can use it to scour with instead of something like Comet.  You can also mix it with vinegar.  (There are SO  many uses for vinegar along with baking soda!)

4)  Forget the Draino and clear your clogged drain with baking soda and vinegar.   Pour a half cup of vinegar and a half cup of baking soda down the drain, then follow up with boiling water.

5) Scrub that moldy shower curtain with vinegar and baking soda.  In fact, you can do this to clean your entire tub!

6)  Make your own baking powder. 1 teaspoon baking soda, 2 teaspoons cream of tartar, and you can optionally add a teaspoon of cornstarch.   Use immediately.  This is better than using store bought baking powder because lots of mass-produced baking powder contains aluminum. (Yikes!)

7)  Use it as deodorant! Just apply to your armpits with a powder puff.  This might not be effective for those with the stinkiest of BO, but for many it will work just fine.

8)  Got cats?  Cover the bottom of the kitty litter box with baking soda and it will help with some of the odor.

9)  Sprinkle on the bottom of your dishwasher to deodorize.

10)  Make a paste with baking soda and water to alleviate itchiness associated with bug bites, rashes, poison ivy, bee stings, and sunburn.

11)  Use as shampoo.  Here's a simple recipe. I hear it's great for dandruff!

12)  Put 2 tablespoons in your baby's bathwater to help relieve a diaper rash. You can put it in your own bath for other skin irritations.

13)  Keep an open container in the fridge to alleviate odors.

14)  Wash fruits and veggies with it.

15) Clean your toilet bowl. Toss a cup of baking soda, let it sit for an hour, and then flush. 

And how could I forget?  You can bake stuff with it, too! Cookies, anyone?


Awesome Information

This is great information. Nice work!

J. Rotondo
Sun & Earth

Deskunk your dog

Lately this has been at the top of my priority list.  Mix with peroxide, dishwashing liquid put your dog in the tub and go crazy!

Good advice!

Poor skunky doggie Cry

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