A clean and radiant complexion is a confidence booster. It also feels very well, which makes it a goal of women everywhere. Thus, they try countless homemade remedies. Coconut oil and baking soda are two of the most popular beauty ingredients. But do they really help the skin? Find out now!
What you’ll be reading about in this post is:
- The pros and cons of using baking soda on the face, with some Qs & As, to make it all easy and simple.
- The pros and cons of using Coconut oil on your type of skin.
- Why use them together for beauty purposes?
- How to use Coconut oil and baking soda in your beauty regimen.
- Better substitutes for these two popular beauty ingredients.
Pros & Cons of Using Baking Soda and Coconut Oil in DIY Skin Care Products
This article is about the advantages and disadvantages. They are, of course, about using these two beauty ingredients on the face.
So, are you looking to make your own Coconut oil and baking soda face wash and mask? Then you should gather all the knowledge you can first.
Oftentimes, we believe that by using natural food ingredients, they can’t harm our skin. While that may be true for vegetable oils in general, for baking soda it’s different.
How can that be? Is baking soda harmful to your skin? Generally speaking, baking soda can be very harmful to your skin. However, this is true only under certain circumstances. It can also be beneficial, especially when used occasionally.
You’ve probably read many articles about its benefits for face and how it can make you look younger. I’ve read them too. But I went deeper and searched for what doctors have to say about it.
Unfortunately, I haven’t found solid proof to support the plethora of benefits that people talk about.
Keep reading to discover what I found in my research about the use of baking soda on the face. After that, we’ll continue with the use of Coconut oil and then, the two combined together.
Baking Soda for Skin (Pros & Cons)
Baking soda is an alkaline substance. Chemically speaking, an alkaline refers to a substance with a pH greater than 7. Baking soda has a pH of about 8, which makes the substance a great base.
Thus, it can be used in acidic substances to change their pH. This change will lead to a substance less acidic.
For example, adding 2 handfuls of baking soda to a half-full bathtub can increase the water pH from 5.5 to 7.9. As trivia, the ocean water has an average pH of above 8.
So, baking soda affects the pH of a substance. Why does it matter? It matters greatly because you want to put it on your face.
Your skin has its own pH, which is given by a mix of oils, lactic acid, etc. This mixture makes the acid mantle of the skin, which plays a protective role.
Our skin pH is normally slightly acidic (5.5). This acidity helps to kill some of the bacteria and viruses that could cause infections. It also doesn’t disrupt the normal functions and hydration levels of the skin.
Putting very alkaline products on the skin can disrupt its natural protective barrier. Even the slightest differences in the pH balance of the skin are important.
Prolonged exposure/use of alkaline products on your face can lead to serious side effects. Here are the pros and cons of using baking soda on face:
- Baking soda can eliminate makeup and pollution impurities on the skin.
- Unclog the pores (on a deep level).
- Absorbs sweat and other body odors.
- Eliminate dead skin cells and reveal a new healthy layer of skin cells.
- It reaches the deep levels of the skin and depletes them of beneficial oils. This usually causes the body to produce an excess of sebum. Further on, too much sebum may clog the pores and cause acne.
- This also means that baking soda can really dry out the skin. In the long-term, this can lead to premature aging.
- Prolonged use of baking soda on the face can cause irritation and rashes.
- Used too often, baking soda can make the complexion look dull.
- It can also worsen the existent acne and affect how fast your skin can recover and rehydrate itself.
Did You Know?
- In the food industry, you’ll find baking soda called “E500”. It’s mostly used as a raising agent.
Quick Q & A about Using Baking Soda on Face
Q: Is baking soda harsh on the skin?
A: Yes, baking soda can be very harsh on the skin, especially if you have the sensitive type. It also depends on how long you leave it on until you rinse it off. The less you keep it on the face, the better.
Q: Can you use baking soda on the face every day?
A: No, you should not use baking soda on the face every day. No dermatologist recommends using baking soda on the face, let alone daily.
Q: Is it bad to use baking soda on your face?
A: Like I said, it depends on how often and how much you use. If you do it often and in large quantities, baking soda can be very bad for your face.
Q: What are the side effects of using baking soda for skin?
A: Baking soda can have many disadvantages for the skin. It all depends on how much you use, for how long, and your skin type. Improper use of baking soda on the face can lead to inflammation, irritation, and dry skin. On a long-term, all these can lead to scars and premature aging.
Q: Can baking soda burn your skin?
A: It really depends on your skin type. Baking soda could burn a very sensitive skin. Or it could burn the skin if you leave it on for a very long time (like overnight).
Coconut Oil for Skin (Pros & Cons)
Botanical name: Cocos nucifera.
Coconut oil is a carrier oil, not an essential oil. It is full of fatty acids, which gives it the characteristic oily feel to the skin. It’s cold pressed from the rich, fatty kernels of the coconuts.
This is one of the most popular carriers and vegetable oils worldwide. Coconut oil is used for cooking and salads, as well as a skin moisturizer.
- The oil of Coconut is made of about 50% Lauric acid. This acid was shown to kill some bacteria, fungi, and viruses.
- It is also anti-inflammatory and anti-pruritus. The latter refers to the ability to be able to relieve itching.
- The oil is very nourishing and protective of the skin. It can restore the skin’s natural lipid barrier.
- On a certain level, Coconut oil can also stimulate the functions of the immune system. This makes it easier for the skin to protect itself from harmful microorganisms.
- The oil is a good antioxidant and has a natural SPF of 8. Thus, Coconut is great for tanning when the sun is not too strong. Depending on your skin type, the SPF protection may last up to 2 hours.
- Coconut oil is comedogenic. When you have acne problems, you’ll always want non-comedogenic oils. A non-comedogenic carrier would have to be rated 0, 1 or 2. Coconut oil is rated 4, where 5 is the maximum grade given to the most comedogenic oils (Wheat Germ). A comedogenic oil such as Coconut can block the pores and cause more acne. However, not all oily or combination skin types react the same to it. With its impressive anti-inflammatory and antibacterial effects, the comedogenicity effect may be countered.
- Being extracted from nuts, it can trigger allergic reactions in some sensitive people. That’s why, if you know you’re prone to allergies, it’s best to test the oil on a small skin area and give it a whole day.
Why Use Coconut Oil and Baking Soda Together?
You’ve seen their pros and cons, which apply when they’re used both individually or together.
Using baking soda and Coconut oil for face is usually done like that: together. But, do they work together? Yes, they do work together.
While baking soda can dry out the skin, Coconut oil can moisturize it and restore its protective lipid barrier. However, the amount of baking soda used should always be little.
The oil is much more delicate with the skin than baking soda is. This and other benefits make them good together.
The oil of Coconut balances the harsh properties of the baking soda. If used occasionally, the benefits of baking soda and Coconut oil can be experienced by everyone.
Quick Q & A about Using Coconut Oil and Baking Soda
Q: Are Coconut oil and baking soda good for your teeth?
A: The short answer is no. Brushing teeth with baking soda and Coconut oil is not as good as you think. That unless it’s done rarely and the baking soda is used in very small amounts.
Otherwise, it can cut and damage the enamel of the tooth and make it more sensitive. Being so harsh and abrasive, baking soda can also hurt the gums.
For a good oral hygiene, you can use Coconut oil alone in a technique called oil pulling.
Swish some oil around the mouth for as long as you can. That will nourish the gums and extract and kill the bacteria inside the mouth.
Q: Are Coconut oil and baking soda good for your face?
A: Again, the bicarbonate of soda and Coconut oil can be good for the face. They can be good only when used occasionally and in small amounts, especially the baking soda.
Q: Do Coconut oil and baking soda help wrinkles?
A: The immediate effect of a peeling with baking soda and water is that of smoothness and plumpness. That is so because of the newly revealed skin layer.
Still, on a deeper level, the skin is depleted of its oils, thus it will lack moisture and hydration.
On a long-term, dry skin leads to an early onset of wrinkles. However, the Coconut oil may restore some of the moisture loss.
While there may be some benefits in here, I would still not recommend using Coconut oil and baking soda on your face often.
How to Use Coconut Oil and Baking Soda in Skin Care, plus Better Alternatives
Everybody is ecstatic about the immediate effect of a baking soda and Coconut oil wash or mask. However, to me, what the doctors are saying makes sense.
While I too have experienced the smoothness and glow of such a treatment, I will continue to use it very rarely.
When it comes to using this combination of natural ingredients, check out this next part.
How to Use Coconut Oil and Baking Soda in Beauty Regimens
Coconut oil and Baking Soda for Wrinkles
- Every now and then, you can try applying a paste of Coconut oil and baking soda on the face. It will remove some of the dead skin cells and reveal a new one. The oil will also nourish the skin, which will give it an amazing glow. Just keep in mind that overdoing it can actually worsen the wrinkles.
Coconut oil and Baking Soda for Blackheads
- The baking soda in this remedy is pretty useless. It doesn’t pull out the blackheads. Instead, it can really dry the skin out. The Coconut oil may help because cleansing the skin with an oil is beneficial. It can remove dirt, dead skin cells, and excess oil. It can also leave the skin hydrated and moisturized afterward. In conclusion, you can give up using baking soda for blackheads and use just Coconut oil. I will give you better alternatives before concluding the article.
Coconut oil and Baking Soda for Acne
- The reviews of using Coconut and baking soda for face and acne are mainly good. There are also people who’ve had problems with it and became all irritated. As I said, it all depends on how much and how often you use the baking soda. Technically speaking, since it dries the skin, baking soda can make acne worse.
- Coconut oil may not help either because it can clog the pores. It’s not a rule but it does happen.
Coconut oil and Baking Soda for Hair
- You can use them together as a paste and apply it on the scalp and the roots of the hair. That’ll help clean the scalp and relieve any itching. The oil will also nourish the skin and the hair roots.
- You can also apply some Coconut oil on split ends after washing, as a serum.
- The baking soda can also be applied dry on the roots instead of a dry shampoo. It’ll absorb the oil and save you from an embarrassing moment.
Other Baking Soda and Coconut Oil Uses:
- Soothe the sunburnt skin.
- Fight body odors (natural deodorant).
- Soften the skin temporarily.
- Remove fake tan.
Next, you’ll get two recipes for the most common uses of the two ingredients. Remember to use them cautiously and not very often.
Example of Popular Coconut Oil and Baking Soda Face Mask
- Coconut oil: 2 teaspoons
- Baking soda: 1 teaspoon
- Hydrosol (optional): ½ teaspoon
If the Coconut oil is solid (which, at room temperature, it usually is), melt it a bit on hot steam. Mix all the ingredients together and stir really well until you get a paste.
Apply this paste on the whole face or the problematic areas. Use circular motions when you apply it and when you rinse it off. Press gently and don’t rub! Rinse it off with a lot of lukewarm water.
This baking soda and Coconut oil face mask can be kept on for a few minutes only.
The average time is somewhere between 5 and 20 minutes. This face mask can also act as a weak face scrub.
Example of Popular Coconut Oil and Baking Soda Face Wash
- Coconut oil: 2 teaspoons
- Baking soda: 1 teaspoon
- Mineral water: 1 Oz (30ml)
Add all these ingredients in a spray bottle and give them a good shake. Store this Coconut and baking soda face wash in the fridge. Give it a good shake before each use.
Spray a bit on the face and wipe it off with a cotton pad to remove makeup and dirt. Rinse it all off again with pure lukewarm water.
So, there you have it. That’s how you make a Coconut oil and baking soda face wash, which I don’t recommend using daily.
Coconut Oil and Baking Soda Substitutes
- Is your skin too sensitive for Coconut oil?
- Are you afraid of drying out your skin with baking soda?
- Would you still like to exfoliate and clean your skin naturally?
If that’s so, I have a few alternatives for you.
Coconut oil can be replaced with another carrier oil for your skin type. If your complexion is prone to acne and excess oil, you could use “dry” oils like:
- Rice Bran
These are all light, non-comedogenic oils that won’t clog the pores. They will still nourish and moisturize the skin though.
As for the baking soda, which is too harsh for the skin and especially the face, you can replace it with salicylic acid. If you want it in powder form, the easiest is to crush some aspirins very finely.
Whatever you do, don’t use sugar or apricot seeds for exfoliation! They can cut into the skin and cause irritation, among others.
The salicylic acid is also known as beta hydroxy acid and makes a safe chemical exfoliant. Studies show very good results for this type of use.
Applied topically, salicylic acid is a very good peeling agent for those with acne. The exfoliation from a chemical peeling is, in fact, an injury to the skin.
A good peeling agent lets the skin rejuvenate, smoothens it, and improves its appearance.
Salicylic acid can also enhance the absorption of other topical oils into the skin. So, if you use it with Coconut oil or any other oil, your skin will be very happy. Salicylic acid is incorporated into acne (face) treatments slowly.
The dosage ranges between 0.5% and 5%. In some very bad cases, it can go up to 10%. However, the more salicylic acid you use, the higher the risk of getting dry skin.
As with any other drug, you must use aspirins or salicylic acid carefully. Avoid long-term exposure because the skin can absorb and retain it for a long time.
- Avoid using salicylic acid if you are allergic to NSAIDs.
- Avoid using it if you have asthma, nasal polyps or allergic rhinitis.
- Aspirin should not be used on children because of the risk of Reye’s syndrome.
- It should also not be used by breastfeeding and pregnant women.
The good part about using aspirin topically is that there are very few side effects registered. It is usually well-tolerated by all skin types.
There you have it! You can replace baking soda in your beauty treatments with a better alternative: the aspirin.
It’s a great anti-inflammatory, exfoliant, and pain-reliever. These are all great attributes, especially for those who suffer from acne.
When it comes to homemade face wash and mask recipes, you can use Coconut oil and baking soda. However, that can be done only occasionally because baking soda is not ideal to use on the face.
Instead of it, you can go for salicylic acid or aspirin and make great exfoliating masks. As for an alternative to Coconut oil, you can use anything you like. It’s all about your skin’s wellbeing, so listen to it first and give it the oil it needs.
Have you ever considered the disadvantages of using baking soda on the face? How do you get along with Coconut oil? What will you continue to use now that you know more about them?