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Sunday, December 14, 2014

Homemade sugar scrub - great Christmas gift

I have been suffering from terribly dry skin. Every time that I find a lotion that works, I struggle after a couple of weeks and my skin dries right back out. It's frustrating. It's painful. It's bloody. It's ugly. I just really do not like it.

I recently heard that lotions don't work to the best of their ability without exfoliation. It makes perfect sense. Without exfoliating, the majority of the lotion is going straight to the skin cells that are going to shed within an hour or two (whatever skin cells are at the top...the ones that are just about to shed). When you exfoliate, you remove some of the dead skin cells, impurities, and skin oils. You allow fresh new cells to be exposed to the moisturizer. Exfoliating itself will improve the appearance of your skin. Now, you don't want to exfoliate every single day, as your skin could potentially become thinner and irritated, but a couple times a weeks is just fine. In comes sugar scrub. Now, a man in the mall recently used a salt scrub on my hands (yes, he lured me in with a free sample, and you guys know I'm a sucker for free samples *Doh*). My hands felt amazing afterwards, but they want $36 for that little tub (4 oz jar, half full) of that stuff, and everything is better homemade. I did end up caving and purchasing it for $20 (less than what he wanted originally, but entirely too much) only to come home and see that some of the ingredients (petroleum) are less than awesome.

Mommy Musings posted this sugar scrub recipe, it is not mine, but I adapted it using a blend of oils that I had on hand (remember that Foxbrim hair repair oil?).

Her recipe was as follows:
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup coconut oil (or other carrier oil)
  • 1/4 cup almond oil
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp all spice
  • 1/2 tsp ginger
  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg
I followed it almost exactly, but instead of the 1/4 cup almond oil, I used 1/4 cup of the hair repair oil (there were so many good oils in there, I really didn't want it to go to waste).

I set the jar of coconut oil (unrefined) in a large pot of hot water and put the lid on. Within 20 minutes it was all liquid (very low melting point, no need to heat it unless you are in a hurry).

Put the sugars and spices in a bowl, and stir them well to mix.

I put half a cup of coconut oil in the bowl, and added 1/4 cup of the Foxbrim hair repair oil (you can use almond oil, or any other oil you have on hand that you prefer).

Mix the oil well, and dump some in the sugar, stir, add oil, stir, add oil...until you get it to the consistency that you prefer.

I put mine in jelly jars, these flat ones that have wide mouth jars were perfect. They are cute. And I happen to have these plastic one-piece lids. I have over a thousand jars, I love these ones, but I am not fond of scooping food out of them, so it's a perfect use for them. 

This recipe filled 3 of these 8 oz jars. Exactly how many I wanted. Now, it doesn't smell exactly like gingerbread, but it does smell slightly spiced coconut. The spices would be more prominent if I had used refined coconut oil, but I prefer the smell of coconut in my coconut oil. Overall, I'm pleased with the results. I'm going to gift them, and putting a tiny spoon with them would be a great idea, so one can scoop some out without getting the contents wet. Add a teaspoon or so to your slightly moist hands and scrub them for a while, then rinse. Dry your hands well, and top with your favorite moisturizer. 

The oils in this scrub made my hands feel amazing. So much so, that I needed some for me too...so I made some more to keep at home.

1 cup coconut oil
1/4 cup FoxBrim total hair repair oil
12 drops of sweet orange essential oil
2 cups of sugar

Add the oils and essential oils to one bowl, mix well. Remember, straight orange oil can peel paint, but once it's added to a carrier oil (the coconut oil) it becomes safe. Add to the sugar until you get the consistency you prefer. I made this batch a bit more moist, just to play around with my options a bit. The essential oil wasn't as strong as I was hoping for, so next time I will add more. Beneath the coconut scent, you can smell the smallest hint of orange. 

This was a fun little craft, and will make a wonderful gift for friends and family (and teachers, mail man/mail lady, neighbor, etc).

'Til next time,


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