Nature produces new skin cells in inner layer of the skin (dermis). As they develop, the old, dead skin cells are moved to the skin’s outer layer (epidermis). Normally, your skin shed these dead cells after they reach the epidermis – These new skin cells stay part of your skin for about a month before they flake off. But some of the old, dead skin cells hang on for too long and they cause your complexion look dull and rough. They also clog your pores causing skin blemishes and acne break out. When the old, dead skin is gone, the newer skin looks healthier and shinier.
Natural exfoliation helps by removing the top layer of old, dead skin off – not the good, living skin, but the older skin that lies on top. It is a process, in which you apply natural exfoliants to scrub off debris from the top layer of the skin. This process not only removes dead skin cells, but also helps clean pores and improves blood circulation to make your skin look young, blemish-free and radiant.
The good news is that the best exfoliators are all natural and available right in your own kitchen. So, you don’t need to buy any expensive products that may harm your skin. You can find these natural ingredients in your local supermarket, health-food store or even online. You will observe that some of these natural ingredients are the same ones used in some expensive brand-name exfoliants.
Best Natural Exfoliators For Your Face And Skin
Excited? Here are the best homemade natural exfoliant recipes and DIY natural facial scrubs recommended by beauty experts and dermatologists.
1. Honey: Honey is not just a healthy and sweet addition to your cup of chamomile, but it’s also a healthy and sweet addition to your skin care routine. Unprocessed, raw honey works as a superb antiseptic, due to its anti-bacterial, anti-viral and anti-fungal properties, which helps to lessen the occurrence of skin infections, including acne. Packed full of anti-oxidants, honey helps your skin better protect and repair itself by reducing skin inflammation. It boosts the natural exfoliation process. In addition to its excellent exfoliation properties, it has humectant qualities that means it attracts moisture to your skin, making it a great moisturizer.
Natural Beauty Tips:
(i) You can combine honey with any of the natural exfoliators mentioned here to enhance the antioxidant and anti-bacterial benefits.
(ii) You can mix honey with your favorite hydrating facial scrub to make it work as a moisturizer too.
2. Sugar: Sugary diets may reflect on your face, as it can increase risk of premature aging. But it’s very friendly, when you apply it on your skin – no matter what type of skin you have. Sugar is a natural source of an alpha hydroxyl acid, called glycolic acid. Glycolic acid helps in breaking down protein – a kind of glue – that keeps the dead skin cells hanging onto your skin, as well as boosting new cells development and smoothing and softening of the skin. Sugar grains are small and rough that make them a perfect natural exfoliant to slough of dead skin cells from your face and body.
Take about one-half cup of sugar (white or brown) and mix with olive oil (or grape seed, jojoba or any other natural oil of your choice) to make a paste. Using circular motions gently scrub this mixture into your skin and rinse it off well. You can use this mixture to exfoliate both your face and body.
3. Oatmeal: It’s not only an excellent food for lowering your cholesterol, but it also acts as a natural exfoliator that has anti-inflammatory qualities and works as a natural moisturizer as well. It’s one of the gentlest exfoliants not to tear or injure sensitive skin. Another advantage of oatmeal is that it absorbs oil, so it cleanses your skin as you exfoliate. Oatmeal performs best when whole oats are ground up in blender or food processor, then combined with water or another base and applied to the face with your fingertips.
4. Yogurt: Yogurt is not only a great staple food in your kitchen, but it’s good for your skin as well. Yogurt contains lactic acid, an alpha hydroxyl acid (an acid that you will find in prescription skin care treatments), but at a concentration so mild that it’s gentle enough to apply on any skin type, face and body.
Yogurt or milk hydrates and exfoliates as well. They have skin-smoothing and soothing properties. In addition, the lactic acid helps out in evening out your skin too. All you have to do is to apply plain yogurt as a natural facial exfoliant or even to other parts of your body, let it remain there for about 20 minutes, and then rinse it off well.
5. Baking Soda: It’s used for baking purpose and some people even keep a baking soda box in fridge to control odor. It is also present in some tooth pastes and in eco-friendly cleansers. But do you know, you can use it to cleans and exfoliate your skin as well? Many spa treatments use baking soda. In fact, some microdermabrasion treatments contain sodium bicarbonate. And baking soda is nothing else, but sodium bicarbonate. It’s a simple and least expensive exfoliant, and all you really have to do is make a paste with baking soda and water.
Natural Beauty Tip: Simply add a pinch of it (less if you have sensitive or mature skin) to your every-day facial cleanser to transform your morning wash into a spa-worthy treatment at home.
6. Sea Salt – A Natural Exfoliant For Dry Skin: Sea salt (not table salt) works as an excellent exfoliant. Sea salt has medicinal value in treating many skin conditions like psoriasis. Due to its mild abrasive qualities, it works as a great natural exfoliant, especially for dry skin. Sea salt coarse granules are full of minerals that rejuvenate skin, trigger cells development, and help your skin retain moisture. The granules don’t dissolve easily, and that makes it great to use on the rougher parts of your body, such as elbows and feet.
(i) Sea salt is not at all sticky. To make a simple sea salt facial scrub, just mix it with a small amount of water and scrub your face and other parts of your body with it gently.
(ii) Try mixing it with lavender essential oil (and / or jojoba, grape-seeds, almonds or any other your favorite oil) to form a paste. Scrub the mixture on your face in circular motions, and then rinse it off.
(iii) Take some sea salt and mix it with glycerin. After shower, scrub the paste over your body with your hands, and then rinse it off.
7. Lemon Juice: Citrus juices contain alpha hydroxyl acid (AHA), so does lemon juice. It penetrates your skin and gets rid of the protein glue that causes dead skin cells to glue to your epidermis (top skin layer). Many big brands exfoliants contain high doses of AHA that can cause your skin to become more sun-sensitive, so beware of them and use this natural exfoliant instead.
Make Your Own Natural Citrus Exfoliating Mask: Mix equal quantities of lemon juice, apple juice, grape juice and cane sugar in a glass container. Make sure that the sugar dissolves completely. Massage the mixture gently onto your face with a cotton ball, leaving it there for about 10 minutes and then rinse it off completely.
8. Papaya: Papaya is known for its papain ingredient that dissolves old, dead skin cells leaving the underlying younger, live cells unharmed – much like prescription medicine tretinoin (Retin-A), but without the possible adverse side effects of skin flaking and irritation. It’s also believed that the enzyme can cause skin to heal and help getting rid of fine lines and brown age spots.
Tip: Papain is most potent in young green papayas, so mash an organic green papaya to make a natural face exfoliator.
9. Coffee: Have you ever thought that if coffee perk you up, can it perk your skin up too? Many big companies are using caffeine as an ingredient in their facial products. Caffeine can work as a potent natural skin exfoliator. To use it as a natural exfoliator, rub the ground-up coffee beans onto your skin. It is known to tone the skin as well.
How To Make your own Natural Body Scrub At Home: Take coarsely ground coffee and sea salt in 2:1 ratio (2 parts of coffee and 1 part sea salt). Mix these two ingredients together with 2-3 tablespoons of massage oil of your choice. Take a warm shower to moisten your skin and open skin pores, and then, massage the scrub into your skin gently, with strong, even pressure. Finish with rinsing it off and pat dry your skin with a soft towel. If you desire, apply your favorite moisturizer.
Tip: Caffeine is known for decreasing puffiness around the eyes too.