• Ruby Deubry

12 Pantry-Approved Head to Toe Scrubs That Smell So Good, You May Want To Eat Them



Removing dead skin helps to reveal fresh, youthful skin beneath. It also helps to reduce clogged pores which, in turn, may lead to fewer acne breakouts. Not to mention it helps us to feel revitalized, increasing feelings of well-being.


So often we have items just sitting in the refrigerator or pantry. Remember that box of cornmeal chilling in your freezer? Or that one recipe where we absolutely needed that one ingredient? Paired with a few other ingredients and you have everything you need for 100% natural head to toe body pampering. No unnecessary additives. No expensive price tags!


FACE


How to apply: apply to clean face, neck and décolleté, carefully avoiding the eyes. Use your fingertips, facial spatula, or mask. Brush in an outward sweeping motion. These face masks are best used immediately or up to an hour. Do not store.


Strawvo Smoothie

½ ripe avocado

1 teaspoon lime juice (prevents browning but optional for sensitive skin)

1 tablespoon honey, warm

1 tablespoon freeze-dried strawberry powder

1 tablespoon fine ground cornmeal (optional). Include for added exfoliation

  1. Mash the avocado to the desired consistency. For a coarse texture use a fork or potato masher. For a smoother texture use a food processor or potato ricer.

  2. Add the lime juice, honey, strawberry powder, and cornmeal if using. Mix thoroughly.

  3. Apply for 10 - 15 minutes. Rinse with warm water.



Orange Dreamsicle

¼ cup yogurt or sour cream

2 tablespoon grated orange zest

1 tablespoon honey, warm

  1. Mix very well. For extra decadence, aerate slightly with a whisk or hand blender.

  2. Apply for 10 - 15 minutes. Rinse with warm water.



Oatmeal Cookie

5 tablespoon finely ground oats

1 egg white**. You can substitute with 3 tablespoons pureed cucumber

1 tablespoon honey

½ teaspoon cinnamon


**Health note: there is always a concern of Salmonella when handling raw eggs. The risk of getting food poisoning from a face mask containing egg whites from fresh, clean eggs is low in healthy people with unbroken skin. However, you may feel safer to avoid if you do not have pasteurized eggs.


  1. Mix the egg white briefly to loosen. Add the oats to the egg white or puréed cucumber and allow to hydrate for a few minutes.

  2. Mix in the honey and cinnamon.

  3. Apply to the face and allow to sit for 10 to 15 minutes. Rinse with warm water.

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LIPS


How to use: apply gently in a circular motion. Store in a small airtight container in a cool, dry place for up to 2 weeks. May also refrigerate. Bring to room temperature before using.


Classic Swirl

1 tablespoon brown sugar

1 teaspoon avocado, grapeseed, or light olive oil

½ teaspoon honey (even crystallized honey is ok!)

¼ teaspoon vanilla extract

  1. Mix all the ingredients together in a small bowl. ­­

  2. Use to scrub the lips for up to 1 minute. Rinse the lips with warm water then pat dry.


Coconut cake


1 tablespoon white sugar

1 teaspoon unrefined coconut oil

½ teaspoon grated lemon zest

  1. Mix all the ingredients together in a small bowl.

  2. Use to scrub the lips for up to 1 minute. Rinse the lips with warm water then pat dry.



Mint That

2 to 3 fresh mint leaves

1 tablespoon hot water

1 tablespoon brown sugar

1 teaspoon avocado, grapeseed, or light olive oil

  1. Steep the mint leaves in the hot water for 1 minute or until the leaves are soft and bright green. Remove the leaves and pat dry. Discard the water.

  2. Using a mortar and pestle or the back of a spoon, crush the mint leaves with the oil. Stir in the brown sugar.

  3. Use to scrub the lips for up to 1 minute. Rinse the lips with warm water then pat dry.


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HAND & FOOT


How to use: apply in a circular motion paying special attention to rough areas of skin and cuticles. Store in an airtight container in a cool, dry place for up to 1 month, unless otherwise indicated. May also refrigerate. Coarse salt makes a great substitute for sugar if stronger exfoliation is needed. Recipe makes enough for the hands and feet.


Ginger snaps


½ cup brown sugar

6 tablespoons avocado, grapeseed, or light olive oil

½ teaspoon fresh grated ginger or 1 teaspoon ground ginger

½ teaspoon ground cinnamon

½ teaspoon grated orange zest (optional)

  1. Mix all the ingredients vigorously.

  2. Use to scrub the hands and/or feet for a few minutes. Rinse with warm water then pat dry.


Lem lavender bar

½ cup medium to coarse white sugar

6 tablespoons avocado, grapeseed, or light olive oil

1 tablespoon grated lemon zest

1/8 teaspoon cooking lavender

  1. Crush the lavender seeds with the back of a spoon in a small bowl.

  2. Add the remaining ingredients to the bowl and mix well.

  3. Use to scrub the hands and/or feet for a few minutes. Rinse with warm water then pat dry.



Piña colada

½ cup medium to coarse white sugar

½ cup unrefined coconut oil

¼ cup pineapple, pureed

¼ teaspoon ground turmeric (optional)

½ teaspoon grated lime zest (optional)

  1. Press the liquid out of the pineapple puree until almost dry.

  2. Add the remaining ingredients and mix vigorously.

  3. Scrub the hands and/or feet for a few minutes, then allow to rest on the skin for 5 – 10 minutes. The alpha-hydroxy acid (AHA) in the pineapple will provide additional exfoliation.

  4. Rinse with warm water then pat dry.

Tip: Best used within 1 hour of making. You can refrigerate in an airtight container but the acid and juice from the pineapple will dissolve the sugar over time.


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BODY


How to use: apply to dry or lightly damp skin in a circular motion. Avoid sensitive areas. You can use raw or regular brown sugar. Both will exfoliate but raw brown sugar is coarser. Unless indicated, store scrub in an airtight container in a cool, dry place.


Cornflower Fields

½ cup fine-ground cornmeal

½ cup plain yogurt

1 – 2 drops rose water extract or 1/8 teaspoon cooking lavender seeds (optional)


  1. If using lavender: crush the lavender seeds with the back of a spoon in a small bowl. Stir in the cornmeal and plain yogurt.

  2. If not using lavender: mix the cornmeal and yogurt together. Add the rose water.

  3. Use to scrub the body, focusing on each section for a minute or less. Rinse with warm water then pat dry.

Tip: Best used within 1 hour of making.



Whipped Tiramisu

½ cup brown sugar

1/3 cup unrefined coconut oil

¼ cup fine coffee grounds, fresh (used grounds can be substituted but will be less potent and fragrant)

1 heaping tablespoon cocoa powder

1 teaspoon vanilla extract (optional)

  1. Process all the ingredients with a food processor on medium-high speed for 10 – 20 seconds until creamy but still lightly grainy. If you do not have a food processor, mix vigorously by hand; it will have a classic grainy texture instead.

  2. Use to scrub the body, focusing on each section for a minute or less. Rinse with warm water then pat dry.



Sargasso Sea


1 cup coarse salt – if you have sea salt to spare, it would be a luxurious splurge for your body!

½ cup avocado, grapeseed, or light olive oil

1 tablespoon green or black tea leaves (loose leaf or tea bag)

1 teaspoon matcha green tea powder

  1. Mix the salt and oil vigorously. Mix in the green tea leaves and matcha green tea powder.

  2. Use to scrub the body, focusing on each section for a minute or less. Rinse with warm water then pat dry.




HOW OFTEN TO EXFOLIATE


Depends on skin type. Skin turnover i.e. how often dead skin sheds, occurs every 20 – 48 days, depending on factors like age and weather [1, 2]. For persons with sensitive skin, once monthly is usually enough. People with normal, oily, or dry skin can use once weekly. I suggest talking to your dermatologist first if you would like to scrub more frequently.

For self-care between scrubs, opt for a nourishing mask.



SALT VS SUGAR BASE


They can be used interchangeably depending on where you are using the scrub. Table sugar has a finer texture so will glide more smoothly over the skin. Sugar-based scrubs may also be preferred for sensitive skin. There are times that coarse salt is helpful, for example on rougher areas of the feet. Remember that a scrub should never scratch or cause pain.


If you only have coarse ingredients and want a smoother scrub, use a food processor to blend all the ingredients briefly until smooth.



POST DIY TREATMENT


After patting your skin dry, immediately follow with a moisturizer. The richness of your moisturizer will depend on the level of exfoliation of your DIY treatment and skin type.



SAVVY TIDBITS


Be careful in the shower with scrubs that are oil-based as they can make the shower slippery

Some products do not dissolve in the shower and can lead to clogging e.g. cornmeal and pineapple. A shower drain cover is a great idea to protect your plumbing.



References

  1. 1. Maeda, K. New Method of Measurement of Epidermal Turnover in Humans. Cosmetics 2017, 4(47)

  2. Iizuka H. Epidermal turnover time. J Dermatol Sci 1994, 8(3):215-217

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