Sweeter Skin with Sugar Scrubs
I have found sugar scrub to be one of the beneficial and easiest skin solutions to make. The scrub exfoliates, moisturizes, tightens, and rejuvenates. It sounds too good to be true, right?
Although sugar is harmful to your insides, it is amazing for your complextion! Sugar is a natural humectant, which means that it collects the moisture from the environment then locks the moisture in when applied to your skin.
Sugar is also a glycolic acid, a type of alpha hydroxy acid that increases the thickness of deeper layers of skin, and is used to treat acne as well as dry and sun-damaged skin. More importantly, sugar is an exfoliant that removes the layer of dead skin cells so that your beautiful skin can shine through.
As a resident of Arizona, who wears shorts 350/365 days out of the year, I always want my legs to be glowing and ready for the sunshine!
Making a sugar scrub is a five-minute process and requires only a few household items! You’ll need two parts sugar (white or brown) to one part oil (grape seed, almond, olive, or coconut), vitamin E oil is optional, and any essential oil(s) of your choice!
So after web surfing, trial, and error, here are my favorite sugar scrub combinations that I think you'll love:
1) Vanilla Lavender Sugar Scrub: 1 cup of white sugar, 1/2 cup almond oil, 1/2 teaspoon of Vitamin E oil, 1/2 teaspoon of vanilla extract and 15 drops of lavender essential oil.
After trying out seven different sugar scrub mixtures, this one is my number one. The smell is ambrosial and calming but not overpowering. Smelling like vanilla and lavender the whole day is a treat! I found this recipe from the Wellness Mama.
2) Citrus Sugar Scrub: 1 small lemon, 1 small lime, 1 cup pure cane sugar, 1/2 cup coconut oil, 1 teaspoon of peppermint essential oil/extract, mint leaves, lemon and lime peels (if you want the scrub to look pretty)
Citrus is a natural source of Vitamin C, which will even out your skin tone. It's also a natural astringent so your pores will tighten and your skin will brighten! Find the original recipe at this DIY site, Sugar & Cloth .
3) Peppermint Sugar Scrub: 1 cup of granulated sugar, 1/2 cup of grape seed oil, peppermint oil.
This scrub will make your morning shower the best start to any day because it is refreshing and energizing. Peppermint oil has been used for soothing muscle pains, headaches, and even itchiness.
4) Vanilla Coconut Brown Sugar Scrub: 1/2 cup coconut oil, 1/2 cup of brown sugar, 1/2 teaspoon of vanilla extract.
This one from Treehugger has got to be one of my favorite brown sugar combinations!
By the way, when choosing between types of sugars, brown sugar is softer than granulated sugar. Try out both with any of these recipes and see which one you prefer! You can also substitute sugar with sea salt. There are a couple differences between salt and sugar, and not just the sweet vs. sour aspect:
- Sugar scrubs are usually more gentle while salt scrubs are more abrasive. With that being said, sugar scrubs are better for first time users and people with sensitive skin and salt scrubs are better for those with oily skin.
- While both salt and sugar scrubs exfoliate and remove dead skin, according to Naturopathic Control, salt scrubs can do a better job of removing toxins and impurities from the skin.
- A personal tip: I prefer using salt scrubs for my feet, elbows, and knees. I've found that sugar scrubs are best for more delicate skin areas such as my face and the rest of my body. Also, whether it is salt or sugar, exfoliation is a 2-3 times a week sort of deal!
Both salt and sugar do wonders to the skin, it is up to you to make the choice depending on what your skin needs. Making your own body scrub is easy, cheap, and fast, so what are you waiting for? Start scrubbing!