How to Soften Hard Bathwater

Written by josh baum
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If you take a soak in a bathtub filled with hard water, you'll wind up with dry, itchy skin. The best approach to correcting this situation is to install a water softening system, but there is an effective quick fix. This technique comes in handy if you're staying with a friend, relative or hotel that you've visited before and that you know has hard water.

Skill level:

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Things you need

  • Measuring cup
  • Baking soda
  • Bathtub

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  1. 1

    Run the bathwater and adjust the balance between hot and cold until the water is pouring at a temperature that suits you. Put the plug into the drain and allow the tub to fill.

  2. 2

    When the tub is approximately three fourths full, turn off the water.

  3. 3

    Measure out a half-cup of baking soda using a measuring cup. Pour the baking soda into the tub.

  4. 4

    Stir the tub water around with your hand until the baking soda is evenly distributed and mostly dissolved.

  5. 5

    Bathe as usual. When you're done, empty the tub as you usually would.

Tips and warnings

  • Hard water damages and dries out the skin because it is saturated with calcium and magnesium deposits. Baking soda counteracts the moisture absorbing power of these mineral deposits.
  • If your skin is very sensitive to hard water, take a box of baking soda with you when you travel or make plans to buy some when you reach your destination. It's generally best for the most sensitive-skinned people to assume that a home or hotel has hard water than to take the chance.

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