Skip to content
Home » Use baking soda Without Damaging Your Hair

Use baking soda Without Damaging Your Hair

baking soda afro natural hair

Although widely used in cooking, baking soda can be a simple solution for cleaning your hair.

In fact, it has become very popular among natural product enthusiasts.

Whether as an exfoliant to remove excess sebum, to remove hair dye, or to preserve the appearance of white hair.

Even though it is a natural product, it should still be used in moderation to avoid hair dryness.

How to use baking soda on your hair? How often?

I’ll explain everything in detail in the rest of this article.


The effects of baking soda

baking soda natural hair


Firstly, baking soda (or sodium bicarbonate) has been around for centuries.

Unlike shampoos filled with ingredients, baking soda contains only one compound: NaHCO3.

It’s simply a salt composed of ions, sodium, and bicarbonate.

Baking soda has a high pH of 9. Its high level makes it a good neutralizing agent.

Just half a teaspoon of this compound diluted in a cup of water is enough to relieve indigestion.

You may have already used baking soda to clean your kitchen or mask odors in your fridge.

An interesting fact, when combined with another ingredient, baking soda neutralizes acid by producing gas (carbon dioxide).

This means it reacts with other ingredients and heats up to produce gas, which is why cakes rise.

Anyway, back to hair (sorry if I made you hungry).

Its high pH makes it an excellent cleaner for your scalp.

Indeed, it removes dirt and buildup from the scalp, leaving it clean.

You should know that the pH of your scalp is acidic, ranging from around 4 to 5 (well below baking soda).

Apart from pH level, your hair’s cuticles open up and lose moisture, making the hair dry, rough, and more difficult to manage.

So, considering baking soda’s high pH, its misuse can disrupt the pH balance of your scalp and damage your hair.


Baking soda : use it carefully

Its drawback is that it can make hair dry and irritate the scalp when used long-term.

Keep in mind that baking soda is not a gentle product but rather abrasive.

Over time, it removes the natural oil present in hair, leading to breakage.

This is what any shampoo does, especially if you wash your hair very regularly.

To prevent breakage, we then use revitalizing products and a hair mask to deeply moisturize and nourish our hair.

If you have dry, damaged hair or problems like eczema, be cautious before using baking soda.

Or better yet, opt for a milder product for your hair.

Again, it is strongly recommended to avoid excessive use of baking soda.

In large quantities, your hair may become dry and brittle due to its alkaline pH.

To recap, this high pH lifts the cuticles, making it harder to retain moisture.

If your hair looks a bit dull after using baking soda, it’s not abnormal.

To restore the pH and avoid this negative effect, you should add an acidic ingredient like vinegar or lemon juice (be cautious, lemon has a lightening effect).


How often can you wash your hair with baking soda?

The goal of baking soda is to clarify hair. You don’t need to use it regularly.

Hair doesn’t accumulate impurities as fast as you might think. Some recommend using it once a week.

The ideal frequency is once a month to fully benefit from baking soda’s advantages while avoiding the negative side.

If you incorporate it into a shampoo, make sure not to add it systematically to all your shampoos.

In short, it should be occasional.

But before revealing the different usage methods, know that baking soda is not expensive.

You can easily find it in supermarkets or online.


Use baking soda according to your needs

baking soda


Baking soda as a natural cleanser

To use it as a natural cleanser, simply mix:

2 tablespoons of baking soda ½ cup of water 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar 5 drops of scented essential oil (such as rosemary or lavender)

Dissolve the baking soda in ½ cup of water. Wet your hair and apply the mixture.

Leave it on for about 10 minutes. Rinse thoroughly with water.

Mix the vinegar and essential oil in the remaining water and pour it over your hair as a final rinse.

It should have a creamy texture.

You can also add essential oil to the mixture (rosemary or lavender, for example).

Your baking soda shampoo is ready to use!

Apply it to your hair and scalp and massage gently for a minute or two.

After washing your hair, it is highly recommended to balance the pH of your hair with a slightly acidic rinse.

For this, you need to combine lemon juice or apple cider vinegar with baking soda to make your hair shiny.

If you’re used to using shampoos containing silicones, it will take a few washes to remove this buildup from your hair.

If that’s the case, you’ll need to reduce the amount of baking soda to half a teaspoon per wash. Also, remember that you should prepare a fresh baking soda shampoo every time you use this ingredient.

The preparation takes a minute, and in the long run, you’ll save time by washing your hair less often.

Baking soda and vinegar for hair should always be used together with each wash.


Removing excess sebum from oily hair

Baking soda is a very effective hair cleanser that works well for oily hair.

Over time, it can reduce the number of washes to a few times a week.

However, even though it’s effective in removing excess sebum, you should still be careful if you have curly and dry hair.

Indeed, it is recommended to reduce the frequency of baking soda application when combined with other natural washes.

Feel free to do some testing to see what works best for you.


De-yellowing white hair with baking soda

Washing hair with baking soda doesn’t hide white hair, but it can help maintain a healthy appearance.

A shampoo with baking soda can also eliminate the discoloration of white hair, which occurs when white or gray hair begins to take on a coppery and brassy color.

In fact, the discoloration of white hair occurs when it starts to turn a coppery yellow color.

This yellowing is usually caused by excessive sun exposure, excessive dryness, or other factors (stress, etc.).

Washing your hair with baking soda will not only help de-yellow white hair but also give it a healthy and shiny appearance.


Baking soda on colored hair

Sodium bicarbonate is useful for removing hair dye.

However, if you want to keep your brand new color, do not use baking soda to wash your hair.

Otherwise, you can create a natural hair color remover from baking soda.

Thanks to its cleaning properties and alkaline pH, it remains an interesting solution to remove an unwanted color.

Recipe: You should use two tablespoons per cup of water and mix.

Another alternative is to mix baking soda with lemon juice, which is more effective.

Indeed, lemon has strong bleaching properties to remove an undesirable tint from colored hair.

You may need 3 to 4 washes on consecutive days to completely remove the color.

Remember to moisturize and nourish your strands after the treatment to avoid damaging your hair.


Don’t forget to do a hair mask

Once a week, pamper your hair by making a nourishing and hydrating hair mask.

For example, for an avocado hair mask, use:

One tablespoon of coconut oil (or castor oil) ½ mashed avocado (or more depending on your hair’s length)

Turn your mask into a smooth and homogeneous consistency. Apply the mixture to your entire hair and leave it on for about 20 minutes before rinsing.

Once done, follow your usual hair care routine.


How to avoid dryness in your hair ?

baking soda natural afro hair

There are many simple steps to avoid dryness and damage.

The products used in your hair routine should include vegetable oils:

  • Coconut oil helps seal in moisture by penetrating the deepest layers of dry hair.
  • Jojoba oil mimics the oil produced by the scalp (sebum) and helps moisturize.
  • Argan oil has both cleansing and revitalizing properties.
  • Sweet almond oil has anti-inflammatory properties, is rich in antioxidants, and restores moisture and elasticity.

Additionally, aloe vera contains an enzyme that stimulates hair follicles, promoting healthier growth while soothing the scalp.

Warm your oil mixture for a few seconds in the microwave or in a double boiler (in a bowl over hot water).

Then, apply your oil bath and let it sit in your hair for an hour or two (or overnight).

Get used to doing protective hairstyles to avoid damaging your hair. It may take a few washes to completely remove the oil.

Make sure to go easy on washing for several weeks.



As you can see, baking soda is an effective solution for deep hair cleaning.

As long as you use it in moderation and take care of your hair, there’s no reason to end up with damaged hair.

Have you ever tried baking soda on your hair?