Does your feet look like the Sahara desert like mine? Or are you the weekly Mani-Pedi type and they look like the baby’s bottom? Obviously, I’m not that type and my heels are the tell-tale sign of my highly pampered life. *Cough Cough*
When a chapped piece of skin caught my husband’s leg under the sheets and he screamed in pain, I figured, it was time to make an effort to really pretend I have a highly pampered life. So, I decided to try exfoliating my heels with those fancy scrubs. But have you seen the prices for some of them? Holy moly, what are they made of, gold??? All I’m going to do is to put it on my feet in the shower and probably wash half the jar down the drain! Sheeesh….
So I decided to make some on my own. After all, I should have all the ingredients, right in my cupboards. So I googled for some homemade recipes and lo and behold, there were a bazillion recipes for scrubs, using ingredients ranging from sea salt, mineral salt, dead sea salt, regular sugar, brown sugar, turbinado sugar, oatmeal, coffee grounds, so on and so on. There were so many, they made my head spin. It’s just my heels, for goodness sakes!
After reading all the recipes – well, not ALL…that would mean, I really have a highly pampered life - I decided to try a few.
I used Sugar , Dead Sea Salt (I had some leftover when the kids used to soak their sore muscles after their fencing workouts), and Kosher Mineral Sea Salt (I use them for cooking so I had some in the kitchen cupboard). I used honey, used coffee grounds and olive oil as base and added these three different ingredients to compare the effects.
Well, I have to say, I didn’t see an immediate difference on my heels but after a few times, my heels looked and felt so much smoother.
Here is what i noticed.
Sugar was finer than salt so I didn’t feel the grains doing anything to my heels. I think sugar would be better for faces than heels as it wasn’t coarse enough.
Conversely, dead sea salt was too coarse. In fact, the salt grains were so big that they just rolled right off the skin. I don’t think it did any exfoliating. May be if grounded it first, it would have been better but as dead sea salt in its crystal form, they were too coarse, even for rough heels.
Now mineral salt, that was perfect for my feet. I use mineral salt for cooking and I had some in my cupboard. It’s the regular kind, not the coarse type. They were definitely finer than the dead sea salt so I was able to roll them between my fingers and the heel to actually ex.fo.li.ate the rough spots. The ironic fact is, salt dries out skin. But since I’m using it as an exfoliating agent, it doesn’t stay on my thick heel long enough for it to dry out. But I wouldn’t use it on any other part of my body.
I made a variation of this scrub, sans the salt, and I gave it to Emily to try it on her dried (and cracked) eczema spot on her wrist, and it worked like a charm! So now, we have jars in both bathrooms and we use it daily. It’s inexpensive to make and it really works! If I used it at night, I’d wear thin socks to bed and they kept the moisture and oil working even longer.
Here is the recipe for what I used but you can make it up to your liking. I used equal parts of the solids and added honey and olive oil just enough to make them wet enough to mix together.
1 part used coffee grounds - you can use fresh coffee but used ones work just as well. The caffeine in coffee reduced inflammation on Emily’s inflamed eczematous spot really quickly. I guess if caffeine works on migraines (the theory behind this is that inflamed blood vessels cause migraines but caffeine works to reduce that inflammation) it works on inflamed skin too.
1 part salt – doesn’t have to be fancy mineral salt but I bet regular kosher or regular table salt works too. Since salt dries out skin, I wouldn’t use it on thin skin like faces and arms but it should be fine on feet.
Olive Oil and Honey - enough to mix the dry ingredients to a paste.
If you want to exfoliate your face, use sugar instead. You can add essential oil for fragrance and for aromatherapy.
For a complete list of different types of ingredients for scrubs and benefits, check Feel Good Style.
Do you have a favorite recipe for natural body scrubs?