Exfoliation is an important part of many of our grooming regimes, but some exfoliators are not exactly great for us - or our environment. Microbeads have hit the news as a potential hazard to marine ecosystems as well as causing problems for water treatment plants. Many chemical and abrasive scrubs can damage the skin, particularly if your skin is sensitive, and... well, some of us would just prefer to avoid chemicals or save a bit of cash, right?
This sugar scrub will slough away dead skin cells without damaging the cells that are still alive! What is more, it will moisturise your skin leaving it feeling lovely and smooth. It also smells good enough to eat... technically, it is actually edible! (though I wouldn't recommend it!)
You will need:
- 400g sugar (brown is nice, but white does the job just as well and is far cheaper
- 100ml sunflower or olive oil OR 50ml sunflower or olive oil, 50ml coconut oil
- 1 tbsp honey
- 1 tsp almond or vanilla extract (optional)
- Weighing scales
- Mixing bowl
- Jar to store finished product in (you should ensure that the jar is scrupulously clean, sterilised if at all possible)
Step 1: Measure It and Mix It Up...
Making the scrub is as simple as measuring the ingredients and mixing them together! If you are using coconut oil that is solid at room temperature, you may need to warm it slightly.
Sugar is the exfoliator, the bit that actually sloughs off dead cells to reveal the lovely glowing skin underneath! Sugar is my favourite exfoliating ingredient - it is gentle and helps to moisturise the skin rather than drying it out. It dissolves so just washes away, and does not cause any water treatment issues.
Sunflower, Olive and Coconut oils are great moisturisers, as well as containing compounds that can boost skin health. You can choose to use all sunflower oil if your skin is prone to spots - while most people have no trouble applying coconut or olive oils to the skin, they can cause some people to get clogged pores. - if you are prone to spots, use just sunflower oil, as it is not comedogenic.
Honey is a great moisturiser, antibacterial and helps to open up the pores, making exfoliation more effective. It also makes the scrub smell divine! You can enhance this further with vanilla or almond extract if you prefer.
Step 2: Package It Nicely and Scrub!
You can of course use any old jar to store your scrub, so long as it is scrupulously clean - sterilised if possible, either with sterilising fluid or heat. I got a nice jar inexpensively from Ikea, and decorated it (instructable coming soon!)
To use, simply take a small amount of the scrub, rub it gently into your skin, and rinse off. You should only need to exfoliate once per week, twice maximum, as doing so more frequently can damage your skin. You should also be aware that exfoliation makes skin more susceptible to skin damage for a day or two after use. Be careful to clean the bath or shower thoroughly afterwards as oil residue can make surfaces slippery. The scrub should last a year, but it won't because you will love using it!