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How to Use Baking Soda to Lighten Skin

Mary Smith
By Mary Smith. Updated: April 24, 2017
How to Use Baking Soda to Lighten Skin

Baking soda (chemical name sodium bicarbonate) has multiple health benefits and is used for many different purposes. Its versatility is in part due to the fact that it is amphoteric, which means it reacts with both bases and acids. While this chemical element is used in laboratories and factories, it is also mild enough to be used on the human body, especially if you don't have sensitive skin, in which case you can use turmeric. If this is the case and you want to clarify your skin a little you can use bicarbonate as a home skin lightening kit. At oneHOWTO we tell you the information you need to know how to use baking soda to lighten skin, clearly and simply.

You may also be interested in: Beauty Uses For Egg Whites

Steps to follow:


While baking soda is regularly advertised for toothpaste to encourage the whitening of teeth, it is less common to see this ingredient promoted in facial scrubs. However, bicarbonate of soda has different elements which can be very beneficial to your skin if used properly. Some of these benefits include the ability to neutralize the pH levels of the skin, used as a replacement for mouthwash and even acting as a deodorizer. When used on the skin, it not only brings balance, but it acts as a skin lightener and the small crystals which give it a mildly abrasive consistency work as a great natural exfoliant. You can start the skin lightening treatment, depending on the sensitivity of your skin, and experiment up to 3 times a week. If the desired effect is reached, you can shelve it and reintroduce it again in the future once the effects fade away.

Before you start, you should check to make sure that you won't get an adverse reaction to the baking soda by putting a little on your skin and seeing if it reacts. When you do experiment with using bicarbonate of soda for your skin, start with smaller amounts and then gradually increase them rather than using a whole lot at the beginning. As we will be using it on our face, be careful not to get it near the eye area as it can react badly and cause irritation. The same goes for open sores or broken skin, so be careful if you have any of these on your face.

How to Use Baking Soda to Lighten Skin - Step 1

The first step in lightening the skin is to use baking soda as an exfoliant. Sodium bicarbonate not only exfoliates thanks to its mild abrasive quality, but the pH neutralizer. Like diet, exercise, personal relationships and just about everything else that makes this world go round, a balance is necessary. The reason why we have a balance in the skin is because it acts as a protective layer against dirt and infection. The perfect pH level for skin is 5.5 which is actually slightly acidic, but as baking soda is amphoteric, it can help whether or not it is too alkaline or acidic.

To know if it is too alkaline, you will see that the skin becomes patchy and dry or easily irritated. If it is too acidic, you may have oily skin and a greater chance of acne or other blemishes. To use baking soda on your skin, create a paste by using a 2:1 ratio of bicarbonate of soda to water. Rub this on your skin and leave it on for 30 seconds to 1 minute then rinse well with water. Don't leave it on too long or it may remove this protective barrier altogether. This will be counterproductive when it comes to making your skin lighter as it may just make it redder.

How to Use Baking Soda to Lighten Skin - Step 2

The fact that the pH of bicarbonate is neutralizing helps treat acne and blackheads as it should not cause irritation. However, you must be cautious when using baking soda to not apply it in the eye area and so to avoid irritation of the eyes and eyelids. This treatment, when applied to the skin of the face, must be done only once daily and at most three times a week. In other parts of the body you need not be so careful with the times of application as the skin is tougher. Being cautious is always better than going in full blast and doing something which might affect your skin negatively, so ensue to test your skin first and do not leave it on for too long. Another remedy that works for both skin lightening and acne is fuller's earth.

How to Use Baking Soda to Lighten Skin - Step 3

Exfoliation will help remove cellular damage in patches of darkened skin, but to get a bleach effect that does not dry and damage your skin you can apply the bicarbonate of soda as a mask. However, as we have stated, leaving bicarbonate of soda on alone or in a water solution can be damaging to the skin. This is why you will need to add one or more other ingredients to soften its impact while still making it effective as a skin lightener.


Mixing baking soda with honey to lighten skin will not only lighten it, but help protect pores against sun damage. Mix it in a 1:2 ratio of baking soda to honey and leave it on for 5 minutes. You can also add olive oil if you want to give it more cleansing properties


Mixing the baking soda with honey and oatmeal can lighten the skin and exfoliate it well to get rid of any dead skin cells that may be creating darker patches on your skin.

Strawberry or tomato

While nightshades are better for others than some, processing the fruit and mixing it with a little baking soda may help lighten the skin by reducing melanin production

Lemon juice, yogurt and egg

These ingredients mixed together with baking soda can work to lighten your skin and to make them work mix 2 tablespoons of lemon juice with 1 table spoon of baking soda and 1/4 cup of yogurt. Apply for 5 minutes and remove.

Baking soda and Epsom salts

If you're looking to lighten your skin in several areas of your body, then using baking soda and Epsom salts to take a bath will do the trick for you. Use two cups of salt and one of baking soda and fill the bathtub with lukewarm water. Once it has all mixed well, take a relaxing bath for half an hour, making sure you don't submerge your face in the water.

How to Use Baking Soda to Lighten Skin - Step 4

All these face washes should not be left on for long periods of time and you should also moisturize after their removal. It is possible to lighten skin using hydrogen peroxide also, but you equally should be cautious. Using baking soda to lighten skin is less risky than hydrogen peroxide, but still needs to be handled with care, as it also has several side effects. If you want some other home remedies to lighten your skin, try:

If you are concerned about your skin and are unsure if you should use baking soda to lighten your skin, seek your physician or a dermatologist's advice.

If you want to read similar articles to How to Use Baking Soda to Lighten Skin, we recommend you visit our Beauty & Personal Care category.


  • Do not use hydrogen peroxide on your skin regularly to lighten it as it will leave your skin dry and flaky.
Write a comment
What did you think of this article?
Bad idea go to Dermertologist first. Only one mistake is a huge mistake especially if using on your face. Please do not take the risk. In addition no one seems to have any idea how to reverse the mistake. Ps I use baking soda All the time for house cleaning, baking brushing teeth and more great stuff.
Susan koech
I have dark sports in my face what should I use to get rid of?
I recently got these dark patches on my face. I think they might be due to the sun. In my case, being a middle aged woman in my 40s with fairly good skin, I can say that baking soda was a good remedy to lighten my skin. Adding honey to the mxiture also gave my face some extra glow, though I should warn you, you need to be constant with this skin lighening method, and remember to exfoliate your skin once a week to make sure you lighten the area. Thank you for the tips.
Can I use baking powder instead of baking soda?
Jane Bertin (oneHOWTO editor)
We wouldn't recommend it, since their compositions are different. Baking soda is much stronger than powder, so it wouldn't be an effective remedy.
so I have a black thinking under my mouth??....what should I use?
among jamz
hi i have average white skin i wanna make it vry white ..will baking soda ,honey and tomato mixture help me to get the result fast..plz help
OneHowTo Editor
It is best if you use each remedy separately instead of mixing ingredients together for best results.
We advise you to follow the indications on the article to lighten skin.
Hope this helps
Hii m kajal I hv no pimple but my face is soon dry and there no glow .., I hope this baking soda will work on that...
Matsuri Marj
How long does it usually take to see the result? I just started doing this method. Thanks for sharing by the way
Alba Charles (oneHOWTO editor)
Hi Matsuri, we're glad you're trying this method. The effectiveness of it depends on how dark the skin is. If you want to lighten dark spots it will take longer. Hope this helps.
Hey am sheila i have really dark and big spots since childhood am 20years old but i have tried to use baking soda to make the scars fade,i use the paste 4 times a week and its coming to a month.am just wondering if there is something stronger for my scars.thank u so much.
OneHowTo Editor
Hi Sheila, your best bet is to visit a dermatologist so he can recommend a specific treatment for your skin.
the article is very nice and very helpful for other people and me personally,,, thank you for having written this article to help others cara memutihkan wajah dengan bahan alami
Cynthia mahlangu
Can I mix my lotion with baking soda
OneHowTo Editor
It depends if your cream is water, oil or has another kind of base. I would not advise it. Keep to the honey and baking soda mask three times a week and apply your cream separately every day.
I noticed in the article baking powder was mentioned, do I use baking powder with baking soda or just use baking soda, Is this a misprint?
OneHowTo Editor
Hi Delores, it's only baking soda. Thanks for telling us, we'll correct it right away!
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How to Use Baking Soda to Lighten Skin