When you think of baking soda what do you think of?
More likely than not, you probably have images of open boxes lying around your fridge to soak up that funky smell, or adding it to your (healthy!) baking recipes, but there is one use for baking soda you might not know of.
What is that exactly? Adding it to your weekly beauty routine!
You may think that baking soda would be a little harsh, but it’s actually a great, natural way to combat acne and oiliness while promoting smooth skin.
A common method of doing this is mixing a tablespoon of baking soda into your usual daily cleanser a couple times a week and massaging it into your skin in circular motions. This acts as an exfoliant and scrub that sloughs off dead skin cells and gives you baby soft skin.
I first heard of doing this in a fantastic Olivia Culpo write-up on beauty blog, BYRDIE where she goes into detail about how she cleared up her acne.
As someone who suffers from mild acne – but is totally anal about it – I was ready to hear what anyone had to say or recommend. She first went into detail about how her esthetician, Leslie Kritzer of Mad Beauty LA recommended a sensitive skin cleanser along with a $7 box of baking soda. Kritzer stated Culpo should,
“…KEEP [IT] IN HER BATHROOM AND USE A PINCH TOGETHER WITH A PUMP OF CLEANSER AS A GENTLE SCRUB 2-3 TIMES PER WEEK. THIS KEEPS THE SKIN FROM GETTING CLOGGED, TRICKS THE BACTERIA BY ALTERING THE PH OF THE SKIN, AND THE ADDED BONUS IS, IT’S A SKIN BRIGHTENER AS WELL.”
Well, if it were good enough for Olivia Culpo’s sensitive skin it would be good enough for mine too, right? True, but I wasn’t totally sold just yet.
The real moment I decided to take the plunge was when I visited my amazing new “body magician” and facialist Shamara Bondaroff of SB SKIN. While I originally started going to SB to try the body treatments – consisting of body pads attached to “problem areas” that deliver a microcurrent helping your muscle contract and promoting, essentially, less flab and more ab to boost an already consistent healthy eating and workout regimen – she noticed my skin had some acne scarring and breakouts left behind.
In the nicest way possible, she recommended I tag the LED light treatment onto this session – as it kills bacteria and promotes healing – and try her microcurrent facial also for healing, firmness and plumpness. After taking a look at her flawless skin, I was sold.
After my treatment, she sat me down and asked what products I was using. As I listed off a few of my favorites, she gave me a few recommendations and also casually told me to mix some baking soda into my cleanser a few times a week. I exclaimed that I’d heard of doing that before, but never tried it because I was scared it would be too harsh. Bondaroff told me I had no reason to fret and I believed her.
A week later I found myself in Los Angeles, staying at a friends’, dealing with the after-effects of a plan ride and without my favorite sugar scrub. For anyone who understands how horrible traveling is for the skin – due to low humidity in the flight cabins leading to dryness and not to mention travel stress – you are probably familiar with flakiness and less than stellar skin that ensues.
I swiftly asked my friend to direct me to his baking soda stash and I promptly mixed it into my cleanser and massaged my face with it carefully. The results? Practically instant, and including this in my daily regimen has not only been cost-effective but physically effective too – despite having to deal with sensitive, acne-prone skin that’s currently on a round of Retin-A and antibiotics. Yikes!
Think about it: If baking soda can brighten and clean your teeth in a non-toxic way, why can’t it do the same for your skin? The key is simply in massaging your skin and not massacring it.
So, the next time you’re looking to “treat yo’self”, you have no reason not to turn to your trusty stash of baking soda. You can even try a mask, mixing it with manuka honey and leaving it on your face for 10-15 minutes. I haven’t tried this yet, but I can’t wait to!
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What are some more baking soda beauty uses you know of?