Baking Soda and the effects on your Skin

1 July 30, 2016

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Why is baking soda so bad for your skin? A top home remedy for dull congested skin is a baking soda and lemon mixture. This exfoliant concoction has been floating around the internet for years. Natural Skin Care bloggers love it and claim that is does the job better, and more natural than what you can find at a professional spa. This mixture is also known to clean copper pots! If it can clean metal pots to a shine, imagine what it is doing to your delicate living skin. I am here to tell you, and my fellow estheticians will concur, using baking soda on your skin is more harmful than beneficial.
The pH of our skin falls on a scale of 0-14 somewhere between 4.5-5.5. The lower the pH, the more acidic, the higher, the more alkaline. Our blood is neutral at 7. When our skin is balanced it is able to function properly. Its oil production is not too excessive, and our hydration level is high. It will not be too dull, or too shiny. When we use baking soda and lemon as an exfoliant, it makes our skin more alkaline (baking soda has a pH of 9) which causes our acid mantle to break down. This is the natural barrier function of our skin. When we have a healthy barrier function, our skin is able to do its job effectively, which is to protect us from foreign invaders like bacteria and germs. A common side effect of using baking soda on the skin is a taught, flakey, and reddened complexion. The skin becomes compromised, sensitized, and chapped. When this happens people may think they need to exfoliate more. So they do, over and over again they are breaking down the skin causing more and more harm. I often have clients who come to me with red sensitized skin, asking for a cure. It only takes me one or two questions to discover that they are exfoliating too often and with the wrong product.
Eminence is a natural and organic product line that is result driven. Even though it is a natural product it is tested and stabilized to ensure quality and effectiveness. Many ingredients are added to lower or raise the pH of something so that it can be safely applied to the skin giving you the best results. There are no binders and fillers in the products, and infact they are void of water. That is why you are instructed to add a small amount of water to the product so that it can be applied to the face. The concept is the same as concentrated orange juice. One wouldn’t simply start eating the orange concentrate with a spoon, water needs to be added first so that it can be drank without being too acidic. This is the same idea applied to the Eminence products.
At The Apothecary Spa we carry a number of highly effective exfoliants for all varieties of skin types. Our best seller, which is good for all skin types, is Strawberry and Rhubarb Dermafoliant. This product can be used 1-3 times a week depending on your skin type. It begins as a powder mixture of oat and rice flower that water or toner is added. The amount of water added is determined by how thick and abrasive one wants the mixture. I suggest that the more sensitive the skin, the more water is used. If someone is suffering from an active acne breakout, use more water. The open pores can be sensitive to abrasion. Our exfoliants range from clay masks, a pulp puree, to peel pads that are swiped over the face. If you want healthy glowing skin book a facial and speak with a professional about the best exfoliant for your specific skin type and leave the baking soda and lemon to pot cleaning.