Sugar. It’s one of the tastiest poisons out there. Well, calling it a poison is probably a bit dramatic. Still, with side-effects like widespread inflammation, pimples, obesity, and diabetes, it’s certainly not healthy to put it into your body.
But what about onto your body? Now that’s a different story. And a DIY sugar scrub with coconut oil brings the whole experience to another level.
Adding coconut oil to a sugar scrub moisturizes your skin during exfoliation. Including coffee grounds in a sugar and coconut oil scrub adds dimension to the exfoliation. Green tea in a sugar and coconut oil scrub has antioxidant effects. Essential oils in a scrub introduce healing with aromatherapy.
Did you know that the top layer of your skin is replaced every twenty-eight days? This process is faster in babies and children, which is one of the reasons why their skin is so soft.
Sugar Naturally Exfoliates Your Skin
As we age, this process of skin turnover slows down, and skin needs a lot more help to stay healthy. So, when you reach a certain age (although it varies from person to person), you can no longer skip steps in your skincare, like moisturizing. It’s also why you benefit from adding steps into your routine, like exfoliation.
Exfoliation removes the top layer of dead cells and gives your skin that soft, glowing appearance. It also facilitates the production of collagen to counteract age-related sagging.
Sugar scrubs are made with granulated sugar and act as natural exfoliants, so rubbing sugar over your body is great for it! Read on for some absolutely dreamy recipes for sugar scrubs with coconut oil.
Why Add Coconut Oil To a DIY Sugar Scrub?
Coconut oil is healthy to put into your body and to put onto your body. When coconut oil is applied directly to your skin, it can:
- Prevent the growth of harmful microorganisms (bacterial and fungal) that cause acne, athlete’s foot, cellulitis, and folliculitis.
- Reduce inflammation.
- Treat acne that already exists.
- Moisturize and hydrate skin.
- Facilitate wound healing.
Use Coconut Oil as a Carrier Oil
Coconut oil can also be used as a carrier oil. Carrier oils are vital for topical application of essential oils, which can elevate your scrub experience with the added benefit of aromatherapy. If you ask me, the scent of coconut oil itself is rather dreamy.
Coconut oil is very mild and should not cause a problem with sensitive skin. In fact, it can be very good for dermatitis. However, sensitive skin is unpredictable, so first, try a patch skin test before adding it to your sugar scrub.
These DIY sugar scrub recipes make ½ cup of scrub. (Keep in mind, the dry ingredients shrink in mass when wet.) So if you want to double, triple or quadruple recipes, go ahead. You can never have too much sugar—well, at least not in your bath or shower!
Recipe #1: Coffee Sugar Scrub With Orange
If you’re like me, you just LOVE your coffee. In fact, on some mornings, you wish you could rub it into your pores or rig up an IV line as well as drink it. I don’t recommend the IV line, but you can definitely rub it into your pores.
While the coffee scent will enliven you, the touch of orange in this recipe adds an element of stress relief. The cocoa powder combined with jojoba oil nourishes your skin to give it a healthy glow. The combination of these ingredients will set you up for a wonderful day.
When making this recipe, be sure the melted coconut oil is warm or cool when you mix in the sugar. If it’s too hot, the sugar will dissolve.
- ½ a cup of freshly ground coffee, finely ground
- ½ a cup of brown sugar.
- 2 T cocoa powder.
- ¼ cup melted coconut oil (or jojoba oil).
- 1 T fresh-squeezed orange juice.
Be sure your coffee grounds are finely ground as you don’t want to scratch up your skin.
- Melt the coconut oil on the stovetop or in the microwave (20 seconds). Set aside to cool to a warm (not hot) temperature.
- In a bowl or jug, mix the coffee, brown sugar and cocoa powder together.
- Add the coconut oil and orange juice. Mix together until well-combined.
*Tip: If your scrub is crumbling too much, add some extra oil (small amounts at a time). If your scrub is soggier than it should be, then you can add some more sugar.
Recipe #2: Green Tea Sugar Scrub With Mint
Perhaps you’re more of a herbal tea person than a coffee person. In that case, do I have the most incredible sugar scrub for you! This recipe combines the antioxidant and anti-inflammatory benefits of the ever-healthy green tea, intensely moisturizing coconut oil, and the essential oil of spearmint, which can help you increase focus.
- 1½ T coconut oil (melted down)
- 10 drops essential oil of spearmint
- 1½ T warm water (not hot)
- ½ tsp matcha green tea powder
- ¾ cup cane sugar
- 2 tsp loose green tea
- Melt coconut oil on the stovetop or in the microwave (20 seconds). Let cool a bit until warm but not hot.
- Pour melted coconut oil into a medium mixing bowl.
- Add essential oil. Stir well.
- In a separate bowl, dissolve green tea powder in water and mix.
- Combine green tea mixture with coconut oil.
- Add cane sugar and loose green tea. Stir well.
How Often Can You Use A Sugar Body Scrub?
Apply sugar scrubs to your body, avoiding the face and sensitive private areas. Gently rub to exfoliate your skin, leave the scrub on for several minutes, and then rinse thoroughly.
Sugar scrub exfoliation is a mechanical process, so exfoliating too often can cause irritation to the skin. You should only use your sugar scrub one to three times in a week—and don’t exfoliate on consecutive days.
If you start to notice your skin is sensitive or if you have any kind of abrasion marks, stop exfoliating until your skin heals. You can begin again when it has fully healed, but start slowly and avoid coarse sugars.
How To Store Your DIY Sugar Scrub
If you don’t want to be mixing up a sugar scrub each time you need one, make up a larger batch and store it. These sugar scrubs make great gifts!
Spoon your DIY sugar scrub with coconut oil into an air-tight container. Personally, I love these clear plastic jars with airtight lids. The labels they come with make them beautiful for gifting. Each container fits ½ cup of sugar scrub, so perfect for the recipes above.
You can also use mason jars. However, whatever containers you use, be sure to close the lids tightly, and preferably don’t keep the jars in the bathroom (too much moisture and heat). This should make unrefrigerated scrubs last for up to two weeks. But keeping them in the refrigerator can bump this up to six months.
So Go Whip Up a DIY Sugar Scrub with Coconut Oil!
Sugar scrubs are excellent natural exfoliants. Make the most of your exfoliation experience by adding coconut oil for extra moisturization. But don’t exfoliate too often. If you’re just starting, it’s best to begin using these scrubs once a week. After your body is used to the once-per-week routine, you can increase it to three times a week, but don’t exfoliate more often than this, even if it feels and smells as great as the scrubs in this post!
For expert advice on how to make your skin glow, read my interview with Ann Webb. She is a medical esthetician and founder of Skin Organics, a product line carried by Whole Foods. We really get into how to keep skin moisturized if you take lots of baths or showers.