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Baking Soda for Acne: How to Use Baking Soda to Get Rid of Acne & Acne Scars

3 Effective Ways To Use Baking Soda For Treating Acne

by Christine GlasgowNovember 22, 2016

If you suffer, even occasionally, with acne breakouts if you are like most who do you spend more than a little time and money trying to track down effective treatments to help solve the problem.

And there are certainly a lot of acne treatments out there for you to experiment with. From special acne ‘kits’ (you’ve seen them advertised on TV we’re sure) to slightly less expensive over the counter creams, lotions and potions to even a handful of prescription medications and doctor’s office acne treatments there are all kinds options available.


Why Try Home Remedies for Acne?

Trying out all of these different natural and home remedies for acne until you find one – or more – that help your unique case of acne – because every single one really is different – can be trying, time consuming and expensive,

Obviously acne has always been around. There are writings from Ancient Egypt that mention it and the annoyances it caused to the beautiful people of the day. There are also notes about treatments that these folks made use of to get rid of acne, so the idea of using ‘home remedies’ for acne is one that goes back a long, long way.

In the modern world, you might think, with all of the advances in medicine and cosmetics that have been made since Queen Cleopatra ruled the roost that we’d have no use for home remedies for anything anymore, yet more and more people seem to be turning to them again.

Whether it’s to save money, save time or simply to avoid putting too many artificial chemicals into – and onto – their bodies – people are seeing home remedies as a viable option again and that includes as a way to get rid of acne.


The Acne Fighter in Your Fridge

Baking soda. It’s one of the most common, yet rarely thought about, small household items that most people have in their homes. Many have a box in their refrigerator, to help absorb and ward off nasty smells. Some use it in their cooking and as it can be a very effective general cleanser many of use it to clean and remove stains all over the home. It even makes a good, all natural alternative to store bought toothpaste. And, when it is used the right way, it can be used to help get rid of acne fast sometimes overnight.


What is Baking Soda Anyway?

Do you actually know what baking soda is, apart from a white powder? Well, it is actually scientifically known as sodium bicarbonate. It was first put to use in the 18th century in France to leaven bread – it reacts very well with other ingredients to expand batter, giving pancakes, muffins, soda breads and other baked goods their characteristic fluffiness.

Although the baking soda we are all used to using these days is manufactured, sodium bicarbonate dos have a natural counterpart; narcolite. Narcolite is a very similar compound that can be found in some lakes and springs but it’s hard to mine and collect, thus why a synthetic alternative was created.


How Does Baking Soda Help Get Rid of Acne?

  • A number of the properties of baking soda help it act as an effective acne ‘killer’, properties that are often made even more effective when it is combined with other common household products (but more about that in a while..)
  • Baking soda is a great PH balancer. Acne generally prefers an acidic environment so the alkaline properties of baking soda help redress the balance and slow the formation of acne.
  • Baking soda has mild antibacterial and antiseptic properties that can help keep acne forming bacteria at bay.
  • Baking soda’s powerful absorption properties help ‘mop up’ excess oils in the skin and dry out pimples without causing scarring.
  • Baking soda is slightly abrasive, making it a great exfoliator to get rid of dead skin cells that can clog pores and lead to acne.
  • Baking soda also has anti-inflammatory properties that can help reduce redness and swelling in larger acne pimples.

Top 3 Best Baking Soda Acne Home Remedies

Now that you know a little more about baking soda itself, and why it can be an effective acne treatment, it’s time to learn how to put it to work for you.


1. Baking Soda Paste

A simple mixture of baking soda and water alone can be used in a couple of different ways to help solve common acne related problems:

How to Make a Baking Soda Paste

To make a simple, but effective, baking soda paste add baking soda to a clean mixing bowl, or onto a plate, and drizzle on water (filtered water is the best choice). Keep mixing and slowly adding water until you are left with a smooth, but not too runny paste.


Treatment Method #1

To spot treat active acne pimples, get rid of blackheads and eliminate whiteheads try the following:

  • Apply freshly made baking soda paste to acne affected areas with a clean cotton ball or cotton bud.
  • Leave in place for 3-4 hours or, for severe or very troublesome acne pimples, overnight.
  • Rinse away with lukewarm water.
  • Repeat the treatment once a day, or every other day if you have very sensitive skin.


Treatment Method #2

Here’s how to use a larger quantity of baking soda paste as a gentle exfoliator to get rid of all of those nasty dead skin cells and brighten the skin:

  • Wash/cleanse face as usual but leave slightly damp
  • Using VERY clean hands, massage baking soda paste all over the face in gentle, circular motions.
  • Rinse away thoroughly with lukewarm water
  • Repeat every other day


Treatment Method #3

Acne scars can be as troublesome – and upsetting – than active acne and getting rid of those acne scars can often seem like an impossible feat. Baking soda can help however by closing pores (reducing the scar’s appearance) and soothing the healing skin:

  • Apply a small amount of baking soda paste to each scar individually using a cotton ball of cotton bud.
  • Leave in place until paste is dry (usually 15-20 minutes)
  • Rinse off with lukewarm water
  • Apply an oil free moisturizer
  • Repeat 3-4 times a week


2. Baking Soda and Lemon Juice for Acne and Acne Scars

As we touched on a little earlier when baking soda is combined with certain other ingredients it can become even more effective as a way to deal with acne problems. As lemon juice is also a well known acne fighter, with antibacterial, astringent and lightening properties of its own combining it with baking soda can be a powerful way to fight acne. It can also be a great way to minimize acne scars.

What You’ll Need

  • Baking soda
  • Lemon juice (fresh is best, but bottled will do)
  • Distilled or purified water (the stuff from your water bottle is fine)
  • Small mixing bowl
  • Dropper
  • Cotton balls/cotton buds

How It’s Done 

  • Put one tablespoon of baking soda into a clean bowl.
  • Dropper in equal amounts of lemon juice and water, mixing all the time until you have a smooth, but thick paste
  • Apply using a cotton ball or cotton bud to active acne pimples and acne scars
  • Leave in place for 15 minutes
  • Rinse away with lukewarm water
  • Apply an oil free moisturizer


3. Baking Soda Bath Bombs to Get Rid of Body Acne 

Acne is not something that just affects the face, many people find themselves fighting body acne as well, especially on the back and shoulders. Treating it can be a lot tougher than dealing with facial acne, especially since it’s hard to reach (or even see.)

A baking soda bath bomb can be a great way to add the acne fighting power of baking soda to your regular bath, letting it get to work on that tough body acne while you lie back and relax!

What You’ll Need 

  • 2 cups baking soda
  • 1 cup lemon juice
  • 2 teaspoons coconut or olive oil (depending on personal preference)
  • 1 teaspoon witch hazel, added to a plastic spray bottle
  • 4-6 drops of food coloring of choice (optional)
  • 6-8 drops of a favorite essential oil
  • Plastic ball molds (plastic Easter Eggs from the dollar store work well)
  • Mixing bowl

How It’s Done

  • Combine baking soda and lemon juice in a bowl
  • Dropper in essential oil and coconut or olive oil
  • Spray mixture with witch hazel to prevent fizzing
  • Mix well into a smooth paste, spraying in witch hazel you stir in bursts
  • Fill molds carefully
  • Leave for 2-3 hours to allow the balls to form
  • Carefully remove balls from molds and set on a baking tray to dry further.
  • Leave for 3-4 hours more
  • Add to storage jar for later use
  • Add a baking soda bath bomb to the water when you bathe

The best thing about these bath bombs? Not only can they help you get rid of body acne but you can always use them as stocking stuffer gifts as well!


Does Baking Soda Help Your Acne Disappear? Some Final Notes 

Now that we’ve given you some ideas and methods to use baking soda to get rid of acne it’s time to try them for yourself. If you have sensitive skin introduce baking soda treatments slowly, until you know how your skin will react. And when you have tried out some of these treatments do come back and share how they worked out for you, we’d love to hear about your personal experiences.


Christine Glasgow
Canadian girl addicted to beauty and fashion. I'm a Blogger, Entrepreneur and web influencer 👑 I mostly talk about anything related to skin care and beauty. I created this site to share science-based information on skin conditions, treatments and skin care.
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Acne Natural Remedies Guide