I used baking soda as face wash for a week, and here’s how it went

I have blotchy, uneven skin that’s also dehydrated and oily and tired all at the SAME time. I’ve tried most skincare tips —hydrating masks, converting to Clarasonicism, smothering honey and cinnamon all over my face for an hour, expensive moisturizer. But most days, I give up and use foundation and face powder to cover up any acne or redness. So it goes, right?

After a particularly aggressive breakout last week (a five zit constellation right by my mouth? I mean, come ON) I decided to try something ~new~. Something Dr. Oz has written about  and lifestyle blogs have praised: Baking soda face wash. Some sites will instruct you to mix in honey, while others just tell you to add a little water to form a paste. I decided not to mess around and went with straight up baking soda. The real, unabridged deal.

(Just FYI —baking soda might not work for everyone. To avoid a negative reaction, test it out on your arm first!) 

Here’s my face (with no face make-up on) before I started using baking soda. 


And here’s what the rest of my week looks like using baking soda instead of face wash. All pics are taken before putting any face makeup on.

Day 1:


At first, I tried sprinkling some baking soda on my Clarisonic to use it like I normally would, but the results were trés disappointing. The powder fell through the brushes and didn’t spread out evenly, so my face still felt oily and unclean. So I just pinched a tiny handful with my index finger and thumb and applied that to my face like mask, but then rubbed it in like I would using normal face wash.

After rinsing off the baking soda, my face felt smoother and less dry —the powder was like a gentle exfoliator. Plus, the evil zit breakout I had the week before seemed to be majorly chilling out THANK GOD.

Day 2


By day two, my face was still a little red, but I was digging how soft my face felt.

Day 3


By the third day, my skin definitely felt more even, so I forwent CC cream and face powder, and just used a few sprays of rose water as moisturizer.

Day 4


It was day four of kicking my face wash to the curb, and I felt pretty awesome about my skin. It even had that “glow” really healthy people talk about when they talk about good skin, which was exciting.

Day 5


By the fifth day, I DID miss the scent of my Neutrogena grapefruit face wash, and thought about adding some essential oil to the baking soda so it smells less like baking soda (which wasn’t bad per se, just like, not very GOOD) but I didn’t want to ruin this perfect thing I had going on.

Day 6


I didn’t wash all the baking soda off my face on day six, so I kept finding powdery patches on my face throughout the day. Which wasn’t the worst thing in the world, but was a little off-putting I guess.

On the bright side, I could report no new breakouts. Success? Success.

Day 7


It was the final day of my baking soda experiment, and I could totally say that the baking aisle ingredient totally worked for me. It was easy to use, mega cheap (a box is only a buck at Walgreens and will last you months), and seemed to brighten up my face within mere days.

If you’re thinking about trying out baking soda, I would definitely test out a patch of skin on your arm first (like how box dyes instruct you to do) because I don’t know your face and I don’t know how it will react. For the most part, baking soda (which is made of sodium bicarbonate) is harmless (I mean, we do eat it), but if you have sensitive skin, do experiment with caution.