There are thousands of different exfoliants on the market, but why should you spend much when you can make them at your home?
Although many believe beauty routines have always been a female concern, it's been proven that most of them were invented by the ancient Egyptians, where both men and women took part of them. One of these great routines we must thank this civilization for is the process of exfoliating. Pharaohs were thought to be the link between the Gods and common people, and thus they had a nearly divine image they had to take care of. One of their main concerns, when it came to their appearance, was looking young and strong, and they knew that, besides makeup, the key was keeping their skin healthy.
Exfoliation, the process of removing dead cells from the skin, was their best means to achieve a natural glow, and they basically used two methods to achieve it. Chemical exfoliation consisted of using ingredients such as sour milk, rich in lactic acid, to remove and regenerate the skin (that's why Cleopatra took goat milk baths). But the most popular way was mechanical exfoliation, which is basically what we do on a daily basis nowadays. They created their own scrubs with sand and aloe vera, or even pumice stone, to manually remove all those cells to get a youthful and healthy skin. Now, I mention all this for one important reason. Why do we spend so much on chemical products when we’ve been doing this for thousands of years? For that reason, I decided to gather the best homemade exfoliants, since they're the best way to save money and know exactly what you're putting on your skin.
Sugar Lemon Face Scrub
The idea of exfoliants is to rub some products with a sandy texture on your skin. However, even Egyptians knew that the importance of the process didn’t only lie on the grainy consistency of the product, but on a paste that would also hydrate the skin. For this recipe, you’ll need a cup of baking soda or sugar, half a cup of coconut oil or olive oil to moisturize, a teaspoon of lemon zest, and 1 or 2 drops of lemon extract. The lemon helps cleanse the skin, while baking soda and sugar remove all those dead cells. If you want to turn this into a body scrub, replace the baking soda or sugar with coarse salt or Epsom salts, and voila!
Sometimes the sun can create some dark spots on the skin. If you want a natural product that helps protect your skin from the particles in the environment and that helps clear those spots, kiwi will be your favorite thing in the world. The grainy consistency of kiwi seeds will exfoliate your skin; plus, its natural properties will help clear your skin and give it a nice glow. Mix it with sugar for a deeper cleansing and safflower oil to moisturize, and you’ll have all the benefits in an inexpensive natural product.
Pineapple and Papaya Mask
Masks have become quite popular products nowadays, so there's a whole variety of types for different purposes. Still, you don’t have to spend a lot on these masks when you can make them at the comfort of your home and with products that are easy to get. If you’re looking for a mask that hydrates, exfoliates, and soothes your skin, this is it. On the one hand, papayas are rich in vitamin A, which helps remove dead skin cells. Pineapples, on the other hand, have an important amount of bromelain, which helps soothe and reduce the inflammation of the skin. Mix just ¼ of mashed pineapple and the same amount of papaya with a bit of brown sugar, almond oil, and a bit of honey to get the consistency of the mask. Also, these fruits have antibacterial and anti-aging properties, so the more, the better.
Coffee has been used as an exfoliant, not only due to its consistency. It also has caffeic acid, which is a natural anti-inflammatory product that also enhances the production of collagen in the skin thanks to its antioxidants. To make the scrub you’ll need one tablespoon of ground coffee and the same amount of water or olive oil (I’d go for the oil for an extra moisturizer). This is probably the easiest and one of the best scrubs to leave your skin radiant and hydrated.
Sea Salt Face Scrub
If you hate long beauty routines at night, this scrub will be your ultimate favorite. You’ll only need some pink coarse salt, also known as Himalayan (I know it sounds fancy but it's actually inexpensive, so don’t worry; plus, it tastes better than regular salt, so you can use it on your food), and some coconut oil. The salt helps remove skin cells and cleans your face from deep toxins accumulated throughout the day. The antibacterial properties of coconut oil help reduce acne and moisturize the skin while helping you remove your makeup, so you kill two birds with one stone.
Grapefruit and Avocado Oil Scrub
We couldn’t call ourselves proud millennials without using avocado in our exfoliants, right? Well, if you have problems with skin spots, your best ally will be grapefruit. It improves the production of collagen, while its natural antioxidant (retinol) helps treat discoloration. To make the mix even more perfect, avocado oil contains glutamine amino acids that cleanse the skin. So this awesome scrub mixed with sugar will help you recover the natural color of your skin, while erasing blemishes and even some wrinkles proper of aging.
Taking care of our skin is something we should all do. The skin tells a lot about our health and who we are but that doesn’t mean we have to spend all our savings while doing so.
For more beauty tips, take a look at these:
Images by @benhassett