The following is an excerpt from Beauty Masks & Scrubs by Elaine Stavert (Guild of Master Craftsman Publications, 2010).
Benefits of a Scrub
Cleaning and exfoliating
The natural abrasive ingredients in body scrubs slough away old skin, dirt and oil from the outer skin layers. This unclogs blocked pores to expose the skin’s deeper, healthier layers and reveal cleaner, fresher and younger looking skin.
Some of the harsh ingredients in commercial skin-care products can strip the body of natural oils, leaving it dry and itchy. Body scrubs made with oil, on the other hand, moisturize and nurture dry, flaky or parched skin. There are numerous beneficial oils to choose from, a selection of which can be found in the section on oils starting on page 78.
Cellulite and circulation
Body scrubs can also have cellulite combating properties. Cellulite is the term used to describe areas of your body that have a dimpled appearance of orange peel, caused by fatty deposits just below the surface of the skin. Vigorously rubbing body scrubs into these affected areas can increase the blood flow to the skin and may improve the areas of cellulite, while firming and smoothing the skin.
When added to body scrubs, aromatherapy oils provide added beneficial therapeutic effects, such as relaxation or stimulation. For more information refer to the essential oils section starting on page 67.
When to Use a Scrub
• To keep your skin glowing and healthy apply a body scrub regularly, either once a week or every two weeks. Do not use it more frequently as too much scrubbing can damage young, new skin cells. If you have sensitive skin, use a gentle abrasive, such as oats, fine sugar or salt, as opposed to larger grains.
• Before a leg wax to remove the dead skin cells and make epilation (the removal of the hair) easier.
• Before applying a self-tan. Removal of the dead skin cells will create a smoother skin texture and therefore help to provide a more even tan.
• After exposure to the sun. During the hot summer months, your skin can quickly become dry and flaky. Body scrubs will give your skin a silky luminous glow. However, do not use it on sunburnt skin.
• Before a body wrap or mud treatment to open the skin’s pores and prepare your skin for your wrap
• As part of your facial routine to brighten and even skin tone, or before using a face mask.
Give yourself gorgeous skin with some of nature’s most nurturing ingredients. Scrub your face or body with the delicious brown sugar and let the honey draw in moisture to leave your skin feeling soft and pampered.
What you will need
3 tablespoons brown sugar
2 tablespoons (30ml) honey
2 tablespoons (30ml) sweet almond oil
2 tablespoons oat bran
Place the ingredients in a bowl and mix together. Spoon into a storage container. To use, apply to damp skin on your face or body and gently exfoliate. Wash off with warm water, then moisturize.
Any leftovers can be stored in the refrigerator for several weeks.
Spot the Difference
Oily and blemished skin will benefit from this face and body sugar scrub. Citric acid in the lemon juice helps to clear spots and grease, honey is antibacterial and moisturizing, while olive oil nourishes your skin.
What you will need
10½ oz (300g) white sugar
3 tablespoons (45ml) lemon juice
2 tablespoons (30ml) olive oil
2 tablespoons (30ml) manuka (or regular) honey
Mix all the ingredients together in a bowl, then transfer to a storage container. To use, massage into wet skin and wash off with warm water.
This face and body scrub can be stored for several weeks in a refrigerator.
A toe-tingling foot scrub to stimulate your toes. Scrub away dead skin and moisturize at the same time. The essential oils are known to be antibacterial and anti-fungal leaving your feet feeling clean and fresh.
What you will need
8¾ oz (250g) sea salt
1 tablespoon green clay
4½ oz (125g) sweet almond oil
20 drops (1ml) tea tree essential oil
20 drops (1ml) peppermint essential oil
2 tablespoons pumice powder (optional)
2 tablespoons shredded loofah (optional)
Mix all the ingredients together in a bowl, then transfer to a storage container. To use, soak your feet in a bowl of warm water for 5–10 minutes, massage the scrub into wet skin, then wash off with warm water.
This scrub can be stored for several weeks in a refrigerator.
Note: Mix the pumice in thoroughly before application.