January 8, 2021


If you’re dealing with hair that won't cooperate, piling on the product isn’t always the best way to deal with it. On the contrary, sometimes what your strands really need is a little detox, and that's exactly what baking soda does for your hair.

As a natural clarifying agent, baking soda works to clean hair by gently removing the build-up from each strand. But before you go sprinkling the powder all over yourself, there are a few things to keep in mind before giving it a try. Stay tuned to find out the benefits of baking soda shampoo, plus how to make your own baking soda shampoo and how to use it.

Benefits of Washing Your Hair with Baking Soda

Using baking soda shampoo has many plus sides, including:

1. It gets rid of build-up in hair

Baking soda helps get rid of unwanted build-up in hair by helping to exfoliate your scalp. Build-up from hair products, dirt from the environment and overactive oil glands make some people want to shampoo more often, which isn’t completely necessary. 

Many shampoos on the market contain harmful chemicals that dry out our hair, making it less shiny, smooth and manageable. Baking soda cleans hair without stripping it of its healthy oils and nutrients.

2. It’s clean and hair-friendly

natural and hair-friendly ingredient

When making your own all-natural baking soda shampoo, you can rest assured that it contains no parabens, sodium lauryl sulphate, diethanolamine, dyes, or fragrance. These ingredients are commonly found in shampoo and haircare products, and can actually do more damage than good. even though they do the job in cleaning hair, they also get rid of the good stuff that hair needs to be healthy. 

Baking soda, on the other hand, is made of a single, all-natural ingredient: sodium bicarbonate.

3. It won’t aggravate allergies

A good majority of the population has experienced itching and discomfort on our scalps and skin, and this can often be related to allergies. A good number of commercial hair products can aggravate or worsen the symptoms of allergies, which can lead to a lot of pain and irritation on your part. 

As baking soda is a completely natural substance, it won’t trigger allergies or cause itching or rashes.


4. It keeps hair dandruff-free

helps keep hair dandruff free

Unlike some hair products that leave a filmy build-up on the hair, baking soda clarifies and helps to keep your hair free of dandruff. It fights against overactive fungi and can help exfoliate the skin on your scalp. 

It may also absorb the excess sebum produced by the scalp and help wash off the oil and grease on your hair, preventing the build-up of dandruff.

5. It’s low in cost

low cost baking soda

Perhaps the best benefit of baking sods of all is that it costs basically nothing, so there’s no reason why you can’t stock up on it guilt-free and use it whenever you fancy. Many commercial products can cost tens, even hundreds, of pounds, and baking soda is definitely the wallet-friendly option in comparison.

6. It can calm your scalp

Using baking soda can calm your scalp, which may help it produce less oil. This may be because it balances the pH of the scalp. 

Maintaining a natural pH level in your hair and scalp means that the sebum produced by your scalp will help fight bacteria, keeping your hair from falling out or becoming weak and thin – so it’s definitely worth doing.

7. Can be used as a dry shampoo

can be used as a dry shampoo

If you have oily hair, you can use baking soda as a dry shampoo because of its oil-absorbing properties. If you don’t have time for a full baking soda shampoo, you can simply sprinkle a little of the ingredient straight onto your scalp in the same way that you would apply a commercial dry shampoo.

Make Your Own Baking Soda Shampoo

Making baking soda shampoo isn't as complicated as you might think. The recipe we’ll be sharing only requires two common household ingredients, and is quite possibly the simplest DIY shampoo mixture you'll ever try.

Here’s what you need to do.

mix water and baking soda to form a paste
  1. Mix together 1 part baking soda with 3 to 4 parts water to form a paste. Experiment to see which mixture and consistency you like best.
  2. Scrub the paste into your hair and scalp. Let it sit for a minute or two; then rinse clean.
  3. Finish with an apple cider vinegar rinse to restore the pH balance of your hair and scalp and to add shine to your strands. There’s no need to follow this with regular shampoo, as the baking soda and apple cider vinegar together will provide exactly the same beneficial effects, cleaning your hair like a shampoo and adding shine like a conditioner.    

Tips for baking soda shampoo

There are a few factors that you can consider when looking to use baking soda shampoo for your hair. The best tips for making the most out of the formula are as follows:

1. Mix Up a Fresh Batch

Baking soda shampoo works best when it's mixed right before you use it. Pick up a small travel-size bottle or reuse a bottle that you already have and whip up enough for a single wash. With just a scoop of baking soda, a bit of water, and a quick shake, you're ready to go.

2. Give Your Hair Time to Adjust

Some commercial shampoos can strip your hair of its natural oils, causing your scalp to overproduce oil. Baking soda doesn't do this, and that's a good thing. So don't be surprised if your hair feels greasier or drier than usual when you first make the switch. 

As soon as your body adjusts, your hair will look and feel better and can stay clean for longer, too. Most people who shampoo with baking soda find that they only need to wash their hair a few times a week.


For some hair types, baking soda can be a little too drying if it’s overused, and it shouldn't necessarily serve as a replacement for your everyday shampoo. However, it can be an effective weekly treatment or a natural alternative on the days when you want to switch up your cleanser.

Whether you choose to add the kitchen ingredient to your routine as a cleansing booster or in place of your shampoo on occasion, baking soda might just be the easy and budget-friendly refresh your hair needs.

About the author

Tim Russell

I am passionate about health and wellbeing and have writing for over 10 years on the subject. I have a BSc Hons Degree and undertake vigorous research to help people improve their lives and live more a healthy and happy life.

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