The role that facial scrubs play is to remove stubborn dirt and grime that has taken hold in your skin’s pores, making you more susceptible to breakouts, dryness, and even premature wrinkles. You can tell that you have clogged pores if you have small blackheads, typically across your nose, or tiny white bumps that can be found anywhere on your face.
Clogged pores, however, are not always so obvious. Sometimes they will just make your skin appear dull and lifeless. Regularly examining your skin will help you to better determine when you might need a scrub. Ironically, some facial products that promise to produce healthier skin may actually clog your pores, especially if they contain mineral oil. Some shampoos and conditioners that contain a lot of chemicals will cause clogged pores around your hairline, causing pimples.
An effective facial scrub will include an ingredient that is somewhat abrasive in order to work on a deeper level. Many of the facial scrubs you will find on the market these days actually use a lot of wholesome ingredients, like sea salt, sugar, and ground almonds, as their exfoliating forces. However, most of them also include tiny, perfectly round chemical beads that do the work.
For a fraction of the price you can make your own facial scrub that works without harsh chemicals, often smells fantastic, and leaves you with beautifully renewed skin.
Some of the typical exfoliating ingredients you will see are salt, which can help to remove dry skin patches, sugar, used to reduce blemishes and other ground ingredients that not only clean out your pores, but also offer some antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. You will need to mix these with a liquid of some sort before applying the scrub to your skin—usually an oil or honey.
When you use your scrub, it should feel mildly abrasive, but it should not be uncomfortable. If it feels too harsh, you may want to switch to another scrubbing ingredient. Oatmeal is a very gentle and effective scrub ingredient. Baking soda is another gentle exfoliant that has been proven to help remove blackheads, but is not gritty like salt or sugar can be.
Most of these recipes are meant for just one application. If you have extra, give them to a neighbor or store in the refrigerator for a day or two—but not longer.
You will want to use a scrub only once or twice a week, after you clean your face, but before you moisturize. Since the recipes already include an abrasive ingredient, you do not need to apply a lot of pressure when you are massaging the scrub into your skin. Just make small circles with your fingertips. It is best to do this when your skin is warm, like while you are in the shower. Don’t forget to scrub your neck, chest, and back, as pores in these areas are susceptible to getting clogged.
- 3 tablespoons brewed coffee grounds
- 1 tablespoon sea salt
Mix the grounds and salt and use within 20 minutes of brewing the coffee. You can use this scrub on your face and over your entire body.
- 1/2 a fresh orange
- 4 tablespoons cornmeal
Squeeze the juice and pulp of the orange into a bowl and mix with cornmeal until it creates a paste. Scrub gently into the face for two minutes and rinse.
- 2 tablespoons almond flour
- 1 tablespoons jojoba oil (or other oil of your choice)
- 2 tablespoons honey
- 2 drops of peppermint essential oil
Stir almond flour and oil together in a dark glass container. Mix in honey and essential oil. To use, scoop some of the scrub into your hand and add a few drops of water before gently massaging into your face, neck and chest. Rinse with warm water.
- 2 teaspoons ground oatmeal
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
Mix ingredients and add a small amount of distilled water to make a paste.
Massage into face and neck before rinsing with warm water.
- 1 tablespoon white sugar
- 2 tablespoons applesauce
- 1 tablespoon olive oil (or oil of your choice)
Mix all ingredients together and gently massage into face for one to two minutes.
- 1/2 cup canned pumpkin
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
Mix ingredients well and apply to face and body—wherever you want to slough away dry skin. Rinse with warm water.
- 2 teaspoons wheat bran
- 2 tablespoons oatmeal
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 teaspoon dried parsley
Blend all ingredients in a food processor until well mixed and the desired consistency is reached.
Sea salt scrub
- 1/2 cup grapeseed oil
- 1 cup finely ground sea salt
- 5 drops of desired essential oil, such as lavender or rosemary
Mix oil and salt until the desired consistency is reached, then add the essential oil a few drops of at a time. Massage for a minute into skin before rinsing.
- 1/4 cup white sugar
- 1/4 cup light brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon jojoba oil
- 1 tablespoon honey
Mix sugars, then add the next three ingredients one at a time. Gently massage into your face and rinse. Store extras in a dark glass jar with a tight lid.
Simple brown sugar scrub
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 1/4 cup olive oil
Mix ingredients together and rub gently into the face in small circles. Rinse well with warm water.