The amazing power of bicarbonate of soda

Yesterday it was a warm and muggy day. As I walked into the house after work I was hit with a most unpleasant pong. The bins! Both the main kitchen bin and the food waste container seemed to be fermenting in the heat. Yeeeuch!

Magic white powder

I immediately reached for the bicarbonate of soda (baking soda). If I had remembered to sprinkle some of this magical powder into the bins before I put in new liners, they wouldn’t have been so smelly. I have done that now!

We always keep a big of tub of bicarbonate of soda handy as it has so many uses as a cleaner and deodoriser, as well as for making the odd muffin, of course! it is incredibly cheap for something that is so versatile.

I use wood pellets in the cat litter tray as it is better at absorbing smells, but I also sprinkle baking soda  in the bottom of the tray. It makes a huge difference.

It is good for getting rid of nasty odours in the fridge too; just leave a small bowlful at the bottom and it will help neutralise the smell.

Use bicarbonate of soda for personal care

Because of its deodorising properties, bicarbonate of soda can be used under your arms. I sometimes buy a solid deodorant from Lush that is mostly made of bicarb – and it really works! You can dab it straight onto your skin with a flannel.

It is also great for smelly feet when used in this way. Alternatively, a couple of teaspoons left overnight in stinky shoes or trainers will neutralise those nasty niffs!

I’m not a fan of this, but you can also use bicarbonate of soda to clean your teeth. Just dip your toothbrush in and brush! There are recipes online to make a more palatable minty toothpaste with it.  It can also freshen your breath if you mix a teaspoonful in a small glass of water and gargle.

Half a cup of soda in your bath will clean and soften your skin. Add a few drops of essential oil and you can abandon the bubble bath.

Gentle and effective cleaning

Bicarbonate of soda is well known as an effective and gentle household cleaner.

Use it as a scouring powder on dirt and stains pretty much anywhere in the house. Sprinkle it on a damp sponge and give surfaces a good scrub – it isn’t harsh so won’t scratch them. Tip it down the plug hole with half a cup of white vinegar to alleviate smelly drains then use it to scrub the sink!

Soak dishes with dried on food in a bowl with a couple of tablespoons of bicarbonate of soda before hand washing or placing in your dishwasher. This also works on tea stained mugs.

Sprinkle baking soda onto smelly sofas, rugs or carpets, leave for half an hour or so then vacuum. It is especially good at getting rid of pet smells.

If you have heavily soiled laundry, try add half a cup of soda alongside your washing powder or liquid. It will also brighten light coloured items.

I love bicarbonate of soda because I don’t like a houseful of chemicals. It keeps things simple. I also try to avoid a lot of unnecessary products and packaging.  But mostly, I love bicarbonate of soda because it is cheap!

I have just ordered a 1kg bag from Amazon for £4.74 including delivery. It works out even cheaper if you purchase a 5kg tub. Please note that if you click through via either of the images above and purchase something I will earn a small commission.

11 thoughts on “The amazing power of bicarbonate of soda

  1. I buy three kilo bags of Bicarb from See Woo for around £3.50 Is there a Chinese wholesaler/public supermarket near to you?

  2. Also-forgot- they sell 5 litres of white vinegar.. Not sure quite what from but it is pleasant and not strong for around £ 3.50 too.

  3. Great advice. I first came across bicarb when someone told me it was good for getting rid of the smell of baby sick!

  4. I bought a 5kg bag AGES ago and then had to buy something to store it in! but it’s lasted so many years and I’m now getting to the end. I use it for cleaning sinks, basins and work tops,fridge etc

  5. I love to put some in a small tub with warm water and soak my feet…I only have a shower so no chance to do a bath with it…when the fridge baking soda needs changed I pour ti down the sink, let it sit for a while then add vinegar…bubbles up and helps clean the pipes, follow with hot water

  6. What great tips re bicarb! I’ve not used it for cleaning, but do know of it’s cleansing properties – even years ago it was recommended for removing the smell from fridges.
    I use white vinegar for windows and mirrors which is also good and a natural product.
    Recently I bought Cleanology products (first from Waitrose and then online when I couldn’t buy them in our branch of Waitrose as they weren’t stocking them, they had them as a once-off promotion) and they are made from natural oils and have no nasties in them, and they smell nice. But perhaps not as inexpensive/frugal as bicarb.
    Margaret P

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