How-To Tuesday: 3 Benefits of Exfoliation (And 4 Ways To Do It)
Five syllables and tricky spelling. What does it mean?
Exfoliation is simply the removal of the oldest skin cells from the skin’s outermost surface. But what’s the point?
THREE BENEFITS OF EXFOLIATION
Younger-Looking Skin: Practicing exfoliation up to two or three times a week rids your surface skin of the dead, dull skin cells that keep it from looking vibrant, healthy, and young.
Clearer Complexion: Removing the old, dead cells opens up the pores in your skin, helping to prevent breakouts caused from blocked pores.
Supports the Healing Process: Ridding your skin of the old skin cells by exfoliating also encourages and makes way for the growth of new skin cells. This can help your skin to heal faster, and, in some cases, even reduce some fine lines and wrinkles! It can also lessen the effects of dark spots caused by too much sun.
Younger, clearer, stronger skin… tell me where I can sign up for this miracle!
FOUR WAYS TO EXFOLIATE
Turns out there’s nothing miraculous about exfoliation. It’s simply a matter of scrubbing the skin with a gritty substance, then following it with soothing hydration (often in the form of a nourishing oil).
Making your own scrubs can be one of the simplest ways to exfoliate. Plus, homemade skin scrubs are so much less expensive than store-bought, and you control the ingredients. This ensures that unwanted toxins are neither absorbed into your body through the skin nor washed down the drain into the local water supply.
Keep in mind that exfoliating techniques and recipes differ for various parts of the body. Skin on the face is more delicate than it is on the heels of your feet! When trying anything new on your body, start gently and test out an area of skin to make sure there is no irritation that follows.
Use a container with a tight lid to store the scrubs. Think about repurposing a glass jar or cosmetic container, or choose something pretty to keep on your bathroom counter.
Here are three simple recipes for body scrubs, and one that’s appropriate for use on delicate facial skin.
Coconut Coffee Body Scrub
What better way to repurpose used coffee grounds than by turning them into a fragrant spa treatment? Especially if you’re using organic coffee beans, it’s really nice to make those expensive grounds do double-duty.
This scrub smells amazing, but beware that it can be a little messy. Get in the shower, moisten your skin a little, and then scrub away.
- ½ cup ground coffee
- ½ cup raw sugar
- 1 tsp sea salt
- 1 tsp olive oil
- 1 Tbsp coconut oil (melted, if necessary)
Mix together dry ingredients, then add oils and stir until combined. Use immediately. If using dry (unbrewed) coffee grounds, this recipe can be multiplied for bigger batches and stored in a tightly-capped container.
Sweet Peppermint Body Scrub
Almost everyone loves the invigorating scent of peppermint! The aroma clears the sinuses and gives the skin a refreshing tingle when used in this easy scrub. Be careful not to use this scrub on your face as Peppermint can sting the eyes.
- ¼ cup almond or coconut oil (melted, if necessary)
- 3 drops Peppermint Essential Oil
- 2 cups raw sugar
Mix together the oils, then pour over sugar and stir until evenly moistened. Add a bit more oil, a teaspoon at a time, if mixture seems too dry. Store in tightly-capped container.
Vanilla Almond Body Scrub
You will smell positively edible after using this delightful exfoliant. The combination of Vanilla and Almond combo makes me feel cleaner just because I smell so darn good!
- 2½ cups raw sugar
- ¾ cup granulated (white) sugar
- 1 Tbsp Vanilla Extract
- ¼ cup Almond Oil
Thoroughly mix together all ingredients. Store in tightly-capped container.
Citrus Honey Facial Scrub
This scrub is mild and gentle for the more delicate skin on your face. It does double duty, functioning as both an exfoliating scrub and a hydrating mask.
It can be used up to twice a week, but be careful to not overdo it. Make sure to cleanse your skin before applying this scrub.
- 2 Tbsp raw sugar (blend in a coffee grinder to make crystals smaller and less abrasive)
- 2 Tbsp raw honey
- Juice of half a lemon
Mix all ingredients and apply as a mask to your face and neck, avoiding eye and mouth area (lemon juice can sting!). Let it remain on the skin for about 10-15 minutes, then gently massage into your skin with wet fingers. Rinse thoroughly and follow with your favorite moisturizer.
What’s your favorite way to keep your skin soft? Do you have an effective scrub recipe? Add it to the conversation in the comments!