Nothing is worse than waking up and discovering a massive zit on your face. Its embarrassing it’s gross and you cannot go out of the house with that monstrosity on your face. What do you do? I think everyone has gone to the internet and looked up fast remedies for a zit, pimple or acne thinking they can find something in their kitchen that will rescue their face. Many articles make us think that, yeah putting toothpaste, lemons or baking soda on our face is a great idea and a miracle. But it is not.
Why is toothpaste so bad?
I guess lets first start with the ingredients in toothpaste. Many people think putting toothpaste on your face is a great “hack” because it contains baking soda and hydrogen peroxide. These are the main two ingredients that people believe will help fight the acne on their face. First, let’s start with baking soda. Baking Soda, or sodium bicarbonate, is a base. This base is often used in cooking and digestive products to neutralize an acid. Our skin has a natural pH of 5.5, let me give you guys a quick refresher on pH. A pH level between 1-6 is considered acidic and a pH level between 8-14 is considered basic. While a pH of 7 is considered to be neutral. So our skin having a pH of 5.5 makes it naturally acidic. So in theory putting toothpaste on your skin is that the baking soda will break down the acidic pimple and neutralize your skin. But what a lot of people forget is that toothpaste also has hydrogen peroxide, fluoride and other chemicals that will greatly irritant the skin and in some cases make your acne much much much worse. Trust me 14 year old me broke out my ENTIRE face believing that I could use toothpaste to shrink a pimple on my face. Completely terrible idea.
Baking Soda and your Skin
Why don’t we cut out the middle man? What if we put straight baking soda on our faces? Problem-solved….right? Wrong. Let’s go back to pH levels. So the pH of baking soda is 8.4 while the pH of our skin is 5.5. I know what your thinking 2.9 isn’t that big of a difference what damage can it do? But the pH scale is based on a logarithm meaning that the difference between each pH value is a lot bigger than 1. For example, if I have an acid with a pH of 1 it would be 10 times more acidic than acid with a pH of 2. So if I was to compare something with a pH of 1 to the ph of 4 it would be 1,000 times more acid than something with a pH of 4. Therefore when we compare the pH of your skin to baking soda. Baking soda is 794 times more basic than our skin. That is a very very big difference!
What does a difference like that mean? Yes, the baking soda might dry out the pimple on your face but it will completely mess up the natural pH of your skin which will lead to irritation, dry skin and eventually premature aging. Which is definitely not worth it. If you want to reduce acne you should use products that are ph balanced with tested active ingredients to benefit your skin instead of hurting it.
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