8 Top Uses, Benefits & Side Effects Of Citric Acid | Sour Salt | Tatri | Lemon Salt For Skin, Health, Cleaning & Food

Citric acid is an amazing to stock at home as it has wide uses. Many of us think that citric acid is used mainly for making jams but it can be used for skin care for making bath bombs and face packs, as a natural cleaner and it also can be used to get rid of foot odour when used in foot soaks. I have never ever been without citric acid in my home. If it gets over then without even thinking I get a new packet and stock it for future use. I use citric acid in my cooking, beauty preparations and most importantly for cleaning.

What is Citric Acid?

Citric acid is a naturally occurring acid found plenty in citrus fruits. It is sold as a white crystalline powder. It is called as sour salt | lemon salt in English. Citric acid is called nimbu ka sat | nimbu ka phool | tatri in Hindi.

Citric Acid Common Uses:

Citric acid is a wonderful natural cleaner that does not emit harmful smoke like our normal household cleaners do. Especially pregnant women and children should be very careful about toxic fumes and it is very good to substitute regular cleaners with natural cleaners like citric acid.

Citric acid also is one of the most commonly used ingredient in food industry. Citric acid is also an amazing preservative that has been used for centuries to preserve food, chances are that almost half the bottled products we use at home will contain citric acid. Citric acid also can be used for beauty preparations, I especially love the bath bomb preparation using citric acid. The fizz it produce will delight anyone!

Citric acid is not very expensive and you can easily buy it from departmental stores. Next time you reach out for regular cleaners that emits harmful smoke remember that you can easily substitute it with citric acid which is equally effective.

Citric Acid Side Effects:

Citric acid is an irritant and if we consume too much of the products that contain citric acid it will cause tooth decay and stomach irritation….

8 Amazing Uses, Benefits & Side Effects Of Citric Acid | Sour Salt | Lemon Salt | Tatri | Nimbu Ka Phool For Skin, Health, Cleaning & Food…..

a. Citric Acid Uses For Skin: 

1. Citric Acid Bath Bombs: 

Homemade bath bombs are fun to make at home. Children will have lot of fun in their bath with it. When you are giving bath for young children at home, just add one of these in the bath water. The fizz it produces will absolutely delight them.

The ingredients in this bath bombs are very mild on the skin. To make this at home, take citric acid, baking soda and mix them together. Add the grated zest of a lemon, yellow food coloring and few drops of citrus essential oil and mix them well.

Now to bind all of it together, add rubbing alcohol/surgical spirit. Add the surgical spirit little by little till you can shape the mixture. Dry and your bath bombs are ready. You can find detailed step by step instructions here.

2. Citric Acid Face Mask for Skin Lightening & Wrinkles:

Citric acid is widely used in skin care and many of our creams especially anti aging creams contains citric acid.  Citric acid reduces fine lines, is very good in preventing wrinkles, slough of dead cells, prevent acne and treats uneven skin tone! Professional citric acid treatments are expensive and you can easily make the treatments at home for the fraction of that cost.

For an anti aging face mask using citric acid, take citric acid in a mortar and pestle and crush the citric acid crystals to a fine powder. Add enough yogurt, little bit of honey and 1 vitamin e capsule to form a spreadable mask and apply on the skin.

b. Citric Acid Uses For Food: 

3. Citric Acid to Prevent Sugar Crystallizing:

I always prefer to add citric acid at the end when I am making my homemade jams. Adding citric acid prevents sugar crystallizing and helps to improve the flavor and the color of the jam that we are making.

Try to add it at the end and add it according to sourness of the fruit you are making the jam with. You can also add it to sugar syrups, sherbets, etc.

4. Citric Acid As a Substitute For Lemon Juice :

If you run out of fresh lemons, you can substitute it with citric acid. Some of the common recipes that uses lemon that can be substituted with citric acid are homemade paneer, sherbets, syrups and even for the popular dhokla you can substitute lemon juice with citric acid. But please remember to use food grade citric acid….

c. Citric Acid Uses For Health:

5. Citric Acid For Feet:

Citric acid when added to foot soak treats foot odor and toenail infections very effectively. Toenail fungus causes discoloration and pain and can be effectively treated at home. The best home remedy for it is a citric acid foot bath.

Take equal quantity citric acid and baking soda in wide bowl, fill it up with lukewarm water and add few drops of tea tree oil and immerse your feet in it. Try doing this treatment both morning and night for a few days..

6. Citric Acid Mouth Rinse:

Citric acid mouth rinse is very refreshing and enhances the taste of the food. A study was done on the effect of citric acid rinse on people with muscular dystrophy. The patients experienced weight loss due to taste disturbance and decrease in the amount of saliva produced.

When they were made to gargle with citric acid rinse, though the intake did not increase, the amount of saliva increased and they also enjoyed the taste of food better…

d. Citric Acid Uses For Cleaning: 

7. Citric Acid Toilet Cleaner:

Citric acid toilet cleaners are fun to make at home. This recipe has got baking soda, citric acid and rose essential oil. As we all know, baking soda is an amazing cleaner, citric acid removes the stains and the essential oil deodorizes the toilets.

To make the homemade toilet cleaner, first mix the measured out baking soda and citric acid in a bowl and mix well. Add the color, essential oils or the perfume that you like and mix well till it is thoroughly moistened.

You have to add it drop by drop, if you add too much they will start fizzing. Press them in silicone molds, remove and let them dry out. You can find detailed instructions here.

8. Citric Acid All Purpose Cleaner:

To make an all purpose cleaner using citric acid, mix 2 tbsp of the liquid Castile soap in 2 cups of water till dissolved, once dissolved add in 2 tsp of baking soda and mix till dissolved. Heat 1.5 tsp of citric acid in 2 cups of water and stir till dissolved.

Remove, let cool and few drops of tea tree oil. Mix both the liquids together and use it as an all purpose cleaner. You can spray this cleaner on window glasses, mirrors, stains and rub it off using a cloth….



  1. Anonymous
    September 26, 2015 / 2:39 pm

    Thanks for all the info! I just bought a bag of citric acid to make bath bombs and am tickled pink that I can use it in so many other ways!

  2. Naila Bibi
    April 21, 2016 / 9:58 am

    Is tatric is another name of L acerbic acid or vitamin,c powder?

    • Ramya Venkateshwaran
      June 4, 2016 / 12:04 pm

      Ascorbic acid and vitamin C powder are the same and though citric acid and vitamin C powder are derived from citrus fruits they are different…

  3. Mahek Sood
    March 3, 2017 / 4:32 am

    Hi Ramya! Lovely article i must say, very i formative. I knew tht citric acid can be used in making toilet bomb bt wasnt aware abt its multi purpose use. I do not know where this will be available still searching in Delhi. Do let me know if you are aware of places. Thank you 🙂

    • Ramya Venkateshwaran
      April 14, 2017 / 4:38 pm

      You can easily find citrci acid in all the departmental stores in Delhi, just ask for it…

  4. Unknown
    March 22, 2017 / 6:57 pm

    Hi Ramya Thanks for the article. Is all purpose cleaner number 8 good for cleaning the bathroom sink, bath and around the toilet seat etc. I will try your toilet cleaner too!

    • Ramya Venkateshwaran
      April 14, 2017 / 4:48 pm

      Citric acid will be good for cleaning bathroom sinks and toilet seat, definitely give it a try…:)

  5. Unknown
    March 24, 2017 / 8:16 pm

    Can I use it in pickles?

  6. Unknown
    March 24, 2017 / 8:16 pm

    Can I use it in pickles?

    • Ramya Venkateshwaran
      April 14, 2017 / 4:36 pm

      Yes, you can citric acid in pickles….

  7. Liquidation
    April 12, 2017 / 5:22 pm

    Do you have a Recipe for the foot bath?

    • Ramya Venkateshwaran
      April 14, 2017 / 4:42 pm

      Foot bath using citric acid: Take 2 tbsp of each citric acid and baking soda in a bucket, Now add enough lukewarm water so it covers your feet and finally add 3 drops of tea tree essential oil and use it as a foot bath…

  8. Anonymous
    July 19, 2017 / 1:47 pm

    question: how citric acid or tatri or nimbu ka phool can be made at home…? eating tatrazine regularly has serious health implications….? why it is banned in several countries for children food…? what is the safe intake level of tatri prescribe in Indian and western countries….? pls guide….thanks

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