Maybe you dislike using store-bought cleaners that smell weird and are full of chemicals you can’t pronounce and aren’t even disclosed on the bottle. Maybe you want to do your part in saving the environment and want to use something that’s eco-friendly and won’t kill small furry animals when the runoff gets dumped into the local river. Maybe you love store-bought cleaners, but it’s 1am and your kid has vomited on your floor three times in the last five minutes and you’re out of cleaner and all the stores are closed and you need something now. Hot water, a washcloth, and a heck of a lot of scrubbing is good in a pinch, but certain mishaps often require something a little stronger. Try the recipe below!
Mix one-half cup vinegar and one-quarter cup baking soda into one-half gallon of water. Shake it, stir it, do whatever is necessary to dissolve the baking soda all the way. Store or use immediately. This works fairly well on almost anything in a bathroom made of tile, and most other hard surfaces. Nasty water rings on the bathtub you really, maybe, probably should have cleaned a few months ago? Sayonara, baby.
Cleaning carpet and other fabrics with this solution are not recommended. While this solution is fairly diluted, vinegar is acidic and can munch away at delicate fabric fibers and other less durable materials. As always, test clean a small, discreet spot first if you’re not sure if your cleaner will suddenly eat a gaping hole in the finish of the antique sewing machine table your toddler decided to scribble crayon all over. And even though baking soda and vinegar and generally gentle on skin, you probably should avoid taking a bath in gallons of the stuff. However, overall, this is a cheap, basic, effective all-purpose cleaner for most things around your home.
I’ve been using baking soda to clean my kitchen and bathrooms. I have used it to treat stains, in my laundry detergent. Oh, and I bake with it! 😉 I’m sure that none of those uses come as a surprise to anyone who has read much at all about baking soda. However, I’m going to guess that you haven’t heard about these:
1. Removing Splinters. I had never heard this one before. But, did you know that if you soak the affected area in a mixture of one tablespoon of baking soda in a small glass of water twice a day, often the splinters will come out on their own? I haven’t tried this yet. But, I look forward to testing it.
2. Helping Fight Colds and Flu. Did you know that even back in 1925, during the influenza epidemic, baking soda was being recommended both to prevent and to help fight the flu as soon as the patient showed early symptoms. The suggested dosage came in several parts. Day 1: Take 1/2 tsp of baking soda in a glass of water every two hours six times a day. Day 2: The same dosage but only four times a day. Day 3: Two glasses of 1/2 tsp of baking soda each in the morning. Day 4: Just one glass of water with 1/2 tsp baking soda in the morning, every morning until all the symptoms subside.
3. Ulcers and Acid Reflux. Take 1 or 2 teaspoons in a full glass of water. Because baking soda neutralizes stomach acids, you can feel relief pretty quickly.
4. Toothpaste and Gum Health. Mix six parts baking soda to one part sea salt. Put them in a coffee grinder or food processor and grind for about 30 seconds. Wet your finger tip and dip into the mixture. Then, rub it all over your teeth and gums. Leave it on for 15 minutes before rinsing your mouth. It’s supposed to be great for killing bacteria.
Thankfully, this is more than just random trivia, even if it is new to you. This information turns a very inexpensive product that we all have in our cupboards or refrigerators into a powerful tool for promoting good health.
How do YOU use baking soda?
For a while now, I have read about people going “no-poo,” that is not using commercial shampoo anymore. Well, I told myself that I was curious enough that ‘one of these days’ I was going to check into the recipes for whatever these people were doing to wash and condition their hair.
Well, ‘one of these days’ became yesterday. It was unbelievably easy and worked great! Okay, now. Brace yourself for easy, cheap and ALL natural (a beautiful trifecta)!!!
Here it goes. For the shampoo, you’ll need two ingredients. Two! And 99.9% of people reading this post right now have those ingredients in your kitchen.
1 cup of hot water
1 Tablespoon baking soda
Directions: Put them in a jar or plastic mustard or ketchup-type squirt plastic bottle and mix. That’s it. Work a little into your hair at a time. Some say that amount will last several days. I used it all. Maybe it’s because I used a jar and not one of those squirt bottles. Maybe it’s because I have lots of thick long hair. Whatever the reason, I didn’t feel bad. At all. 🙂 Most importantly, it worked great. I have to admit I was concerned about my hair and scalp feeling really clean after shampooing with water and baking soda. But, it was fantastic.
It was fantastic enough that I may never need to buy shampoo again. Crazy, huh? It’s new enough to me that I can’t even believe that I just said that! One of these days I’ll have to calculate how many pennies I spent on washing my hair with a cup of tap water and a tablespoon of baking soda. Yay for new, easy, natural and ridiculously cheap shampoo! 🙂
What natural and cheap homemade products have you tried lately?
Is Baking Soda the world’s best kept secret? Is has to be! It wasn’t until my husband’s grandma started talking about baking soda this and baking soda that, that I started doing my own research. Baking soda really is an amazing product. And the best part, it’s so cheap! Here are my top 10 uses for baking soda that do not involve baking or to keep your refrigerator fresh smelling.
1. Use it as an antacid. This was actually the first thing my husband’s grandma mentioned about baking soda. She said it would beat anything you can buy over the counter for heartburn or an upset stomach. Talk about instant savings in the medicine department. She said take a teaspoon with some water and you’ll be set. The taste isn’t that great though, but it works!
2. Skin softener. Seriously try this the next time you take a bath. Add a cup to your bath water and soak in the softness. It really works! Don’t spend a fortune on those expensive bath salts, just try baking soda. Miss the smell? Add a drop of essential oils to your water.
3. Goodbye stinky hands. I cook a lot with onions and garlic and I mean A LOT. My hands get stinky quick and that smell is hard to get rid of. After I chop my onion and garlic, I put a little baking soda on my hands and scrub with water. Poof, the smell is gone!
4. Keep your flowers fresh. Have you seen those little packets they give you with flowers to put in the water? Yep, it’s baking soda! Put about a teaspoon in your fresh flowers water vase and it will keep them fresh longer.
5. Crafts for the kids. Want to make some modeling clay? Use 1 cup cornstarch, 2 cups baking soda, 1-1/2 cups cold water and food coloring if you’d like.
6. Rain repellant. Ever use Rain-x? Next time use baking soda. Mix with such a little water and apply to your windshield. It actually repels rain!
7. Animal hair remover. Sprinkle it on your carpet and let sit for 20-30 minutes, then vacuum. Not only does it help get rid of pet odors, it actually helps the hair release from the carpet.
8. Sweeter tomatoes. It’s almost time to plant tomatoes and when you do, sprinkle a little baking soda in the soil. It will make your tomatoes sweeter!
9. Clean veggies and fruit. Don’t waste your money on expensive fruit and vegetable wash, just rinse them with a little baking soda and water.
10. Laundry boost! Oxy-clean is expensive! Instead, sprinkle some baking soda on your dirty clothes and wash.