Have you ever put off showering because you didn't want your skin to feel tight and dry afterward? It's usually worse during the winter when the heat is cranked and the air inside your home becomes extra dry.
My solution used to be slathering on lotion, but that stopped when I took a look at the ingredients list and was unimpressed with all the chemicals.
Non-Toxic Homemade Body Scrub
However, I've come up with a non-toxic body scrub recipe that will keep your skin clean, exfoliated AND hydrated.
I actually created this sugar scrub recipe about a year and a half ago when I was brainstorming for homemade gifts to give to my family and friends. I gave out 4 oz glass mason jars filled with the scrub during Christmas of 2012 and I received so many compliments that I put them up for sale in my etsy shop.
My older sister, in particular, loved using the scrubs in the shower and said it gave her the silkiest skin. Back then I had only used it on my face (cause I'm lazy like that), but this winter I got so tired of dry skin that I decided to give it a try in the shower.
Let me tell you, my skin felt AH-MAZING afterward.
Like, glowing Greek goddess amazing.
My skin was soft and completely moisturized but didn't feel excessively oily. I gently toweled off and that was it!
How It Works
The sugar gently sloughs off dead skin while the lemon essential oil supports healthy circulation and cleanses your skin. Not to mention it smells so refreshing!
The grapeseed oil or jojoba oil acts as a carrier for the sugar and also moisturizes your skin in the process (without clogging your pores).
Why I Don't Recommend Coconut Oil For This Recipe
If you're a regular reader you know I LOVE coconut oil and use it for a plethora of things around my home.
However, I DO NOT recommend using it in this body scrub recipe because coconut oil will clog your pipes! This is because coconut oil solidifies under 76 degrees Fahrenheit, so it will eventually harden and become a huge mess to clean up.
The Oils I Do Recommend
On the other hand, grapeseed oil and jojoba oil stay liquid in cool temps, don't clog pores and have more neutral scents, so they're my top choices. To learn more about what oils are best for different skin types, check out this post.
If you don't have either of those oils on hand and don't mind a stronger scent, you can use genuine olive oil (just make sure it's the real stuff since most olive oil on the market is NOT genuine and mixed with other oils).
A Word of Caution
According to my essential oil reference guide, lemon essential oil and other citrus oils (like grapefruit, lime & orange) can cause increased photosensitivity. This means your skin is more sensitive in the sun and could potentially lighten. So, don't use lemon essential oil in the scrub if you plan on spending an extensive amount of time in the direct sun during the next 24 hours.
This usually isn't a problem during the cooler months, but if you're a sun bug I'd just opt for a sunlight-friendly essential oil like lavender instead!
Alternatives to Lemon Essential Oil
It only takes a minute to whip up a fresh batch, so you can either leave out the lemon essential oil altogether (the scrub will still work amazing) or pick a different scent.
Other yummy scents to put in homemade sugar scrubs:
- Lavender essential oil
- Peppermint essential oil
- Frankincense essential oil
Exfoliating Lemon Sugar Scrub Recipe
A homemade sugar scrub recipe that you can use on your hands, body & face for softer, glowing skin that's super moisturized. Even better, it won't clog pores and is completely non-toxic! Put it in a glass mason jar for a lovely homemade gift all year long.
3/4 cup of organic sugar
1/4-1/2 cup of grapeseed oil or jojoba oil
5-7 drops of 100% pure lemon essential oil (NOT fragrance oil; those are synthetic)
*If you don't have any grapeseed or jojoba oil on hand and want to give this a trial run, use olive oil or sweet almond oil instead. However, I DO NOT recommend using vegetable oils like canola or soy!
Update: My recipe used to call for 15 drops of essential oil, but since I switched to using therapeutic-grade essential oils, I need much less. Use your nose as a guide and add more if you feel it's necessary.
glass mason jars (4-8 ounces)
mini bamboo spoon
Measure the sugar into a small bowl or directly into the container you'll use to store it. (I recommend a glass mason jars because they're non-toxic & reusable!)
Slowly stir in the oil, making sure it saturates all the sugar. I like to add extra oil so there's plenty of it when I exfoliate. Measure & stir in the lemon essential oil (or other essential oil scents), adjusting the amount so it's as strong as you like.
Store in an air-tight container and use within six months. To keep it fresh longer, avoid sticking your hand directly into the container while in the shower. We don't want water lingering in the mix. A wooden (or regular) spoon works well for scooping out the body scrub.