Updated 01/19/23. To alleviate dry, rough, and flaky skin, people tend to reach for heavy moisturizers. They apply layer upon layer, hoping it will soften their skin and whisk away texture. This just isn’t the most effective technique, though. Before you do anything else, you must remove the dry, dead cells from the surface of the skin. That’s where exfoliation comes in.
I always suggest removing expired skin cells with a combination of chemical and physical exfoliation (the former breaks up the “glue” that holds the dead skin cells together. The latter can actually lift them up and away). This post will focus on physical exfoliation, and more specifically, an effective DIY hand and body scrub I love.
If you’re a regular reader of my blog, you know that I’m generally not a fan of DIY skincare. It simply can’t offer the same results as most professional products. What’s worse is that some of the ingredients in DIY skincare recipes can be too harsh or irritating on sensitive skin. That’s why I always suggest being cautious and only trying recipes from trusted sources. With that being said, I really love this DIY body scrub recipe since it’s such an easy way to get brighter, smoother skin!
My DIY Hand and Body Scrub Recipe
- 1 cup of Epsom salt
- 8 tablespoons of sweet almond or jojoba oil
- 10 drops of grapefruit essential oil (optional)
- 10 drops of eucalyptus essential oil (optional)
Thoroughly mix the above ingredients until you get a slushy consistency (you can add more oil or salt as needed). Then, scoop it into a container. Personally, I like to scoop it into a beautiful bowl, so I can display it in my bathroom or guest bathroom.
How to Use:
Twice a week, apply a small amount of the scrub to dry skin and massage it in circular motions. If I’m using it on the body, as opposed to the hands, I’ll apply it in the shower before I turn on the water. Not only does it physically remove dry, dead cells, but it also boosts circulation and leaves a silky coat of moisturizing oil behind. The natural scent of citrus and eucalyptus is an added bonus. (Note: You can add any essential oils of your choosing, or leave them out altogether if you’re sensitive to scents. I just happen to love the grapefruit and eucalyptus combination!)
Once I’ve massaged it over my skin with gentle pressure, I rinse it off in the shower. When I get out of the shower, I don’t follow up with a body lotion. I find that the jojoba oil in the scrub moisturizes my skin enough, so I can save this step. Easy, right?
More Exfoliation Tips and Tricks
Remember how I said it’s important to use BOTH chemical and physical exfoliants? Well, when it comes to chemical exfoliation, I suggest using a body serum two to three times per week in conjunction with this scrub (just not on the same nights!). I love the Smoothing Body Serum. It’s formulated with 21% glycolic, lactic, and mandelic acids to slough away dead skin and reveal smoother, brighter skin underneath. Just be sure to follow it with a body lotion to moisturize the fresh, resurfaced cells. This combination will effectively reduce dryness and bumps, such as those that result from keratosis pilaris.
One more thing. If you’re using this as a hand scrub, you might like to know a trick I use along with this DIY hand and body scrub. I apply the Pore + Wrinkle Perfecting Serum to my hands and cuticles. Even though it’s a serum meant for use on the face, the blend of exfoliating acids it contains can smooth away any dryness and roughness that might appear around my hands and nails. This is a great trick if you’re a fan of home manicures!
Celebrity Esthetician & Skincare Expert
As an esthetician trained in cosmetic chemistry, Renée Rouleau has spent 30 years researching skin, educating her audience, and building an award-winning line of products. Her hands-on experience as an esthetician and trusted skin care expert has created a real-world solution — products that are formulated for nine different types of skin so your face will get exactly what it needs to look and feel its best. Trusted by celebrities, editors, bloggers, and skincare obsessives around the globe, her vast real-world knowledge and constant research are why Marie Claire calls her “the most passionate skin practitioner we know.”