Everyone wants smooth summer skin, and chances are, you have the ingredients for a DIY skin scrub right in your own home. Why exfoliate? Our skin naturally renews itself, but that process slows considerably as we age. When you slough off old, dead skin cells, the brighter, younger-looking skin underneath comes through. But before you go scrub-wild, take care to follow these guidelines from the American Academy of Dermatology:
- Be gentle: Use small circular motions and rinse with lukewarm water. Take care to avoid wounds and sunburned areas.
- Assess your routine: If you’re using a retinol product or anything else that can make your skin more sensitive, be extra cautious in your approach.
- Moisturize: Apply a high-quality moisturizer to drench your skin afterward for a long-lasting glow.
You can buy body scrubs at any grocery, drug store or beauty emporium, but why not make your own deliciously decadent mix from scratch—all natural and exactly the way you like it? An added bonus: When you make your own, you’re saving lots of money.
First choose your scrubbing element. This will be the bulk of your scrub.
- Sugar: Sugar is the gentlest scrubber—perfect for sensitive skin and has hydrating properties. Also try brown sugar and superfine sugar.
- Sea salt or Epsom salt: Rich in beneficial minerals, salts can help flush out toxins and reduce inflammation.
- Coffee grounds: Coffee can stimulate blood flow and may reduce inflammation and tighten skin. It’s also a great way to recycle the grounds from your morning brew! Do be forewarned that your shower will get messy—and make sure your plumbing can handle grounds going down the pipes.
Next, add your lubricant. Start with a small amount and keep adding if your scrub seems too dry.
- Olive oil is packed with antioxidants, won’t clog your pores, and provides deep moisturizing.
- Coconut oil has antifungal, antibacterial and high-moisturizing properties. It’s also said to heal certain skin conditions.
- Shea butter and cocoa butter can improve a number of skin conditions as well and reduce the appearance of fine lines. Shea butter has a milder odor than cocoa butter, which actually smells divine.
Then sprinkle in your scents and additional ingredients. These provide scents and some, such as green tea and honey, may also have properties that heal the skin.
- Green tea
- Essential oils
- Cinnamon or pie spice
- Citrus oils, juice and/or zest
When you’ve got everything together, give it a whirl in a food processor or blender, and put it in a wide-mouth jar. If you have perishable ingredients or if you’ve made a big batch, keep your scrub in the refrigerator.
Need some combos to get started? Give these a try.
- shea butter + sugar + orange oil + ginger
- olive oil + salt + lavender
- coconut oil + coffee + pie spice.
Here’s to some spectacular summer scrubbing!