how does baking soda absorb odors? Is it porous?


Does baking soda have an ability to attract odor molecules?

In: 10

Smells are acidic in nature, so the baking soda acts as a pH neutralizer, sucking up all those bad smells and absorbing it. You can even use it in your shoes to get icky smells out. It’s best used spread in a thin layer wherever you’re trying to cut smell down.

It doesn’t really absorb odors, that was a commercial stunt by arm and hammer. Also the other comment saying that odors are acidic is plain wrong, you have all kind of smelly molecules. Acetic acid from vinegar is acidic. Methyl,ethyl amines found in fish are basic. Benzene or toluene are neither.
Where baking soda seems to work a little bit, it is with thiols like the ones found in Amaryliddacea like garlic or onion (but also in skunks). And it may be simply an adsorption process. We are sensitive to really small concentrations of those compounds so they are not hard to remove. It is actually a bit more efficient to make a solution of hydrogen peroxide and baking soda for those. Note that for the skunk smell it is usually not sufficient because the concentrations are really high and it tends to bind strongly to skin and clothes that would get damaged by the higher peroxide concentration that would be needed.


( The Wikipedia page on baking soda as other references).,soda%20also%20neutralizes%20this%20acid.