To Scrub or Not To Scrub? That is the Question!

The Soft, Supple Skin Series Part 1 – Skin Scrubs

Natural skin scrubs are easy to make, and thanks to the internet it’s easy to find recipes – but are they good for your skin?



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Salt scrub - pic via

Salt scrub – pic via

Skin scrubs can make your skin feel soft and new, providing you don’t use them too often.

The skin is called the Integumentary system. It is the largest organ of the body – and yes it’s actually classified as an organ, just like your liver and heart are organs. The skin has its own intelligence and it separates us from our environment and gives us our unique quality. It is also the most exposed organ in the body and needs some care and attention.

The skin on our faces is finer than in other parts of our body, but generally speaking it works in a particular way. It is estimated we could be losing about 30,000 skin cells per hour. Yes, per hour! New cells are formed from within, and push up to the external layer of the epidermis. This means our skin is already taking care of itself in a complicated and intelligent fashion, so is it ok to use a scrub?

Salt makes a great base for a scrub

Salt makes a great base for a scrub but use fine salt or grind up coarse salt

I think using a scrub once every week to 10 days is good for your skin, just be careful when actually scrubbing your skin so as not to give yourself scratches. Also the scrub you make to use on your body, could be a little too rough for your face so plan ahead and do your recipe research first.

* Winter skin tends to need a scrub more frequently as hot showers and layers of clothing can interfere with the natural release of skin, and we can get that dry crocodile looking effect.

* Basically you will be washing dead skin down the drain rather than letting it pile up around the house.

* Ideally soak in a bath for 5 minutes. Use your scrub on all parts of your body, then soak for at least another 5 minutes for a real spa treatment feeling. Some of us only have a shower so make the best of what you have.

* Always moisturise after your scrub, and of course I recommend you use a body oil and face oil or serum which will give your skin a velvety smooth finish.

Sea salt - pic via

Sea salt – pic via

Bases for Your Body

* Fine sea salt is the best. Don’t use coarse as you will scratch yourself.

* I see recipes all the time using sugar but I just don’t understand why you would use sugar when you have salt?

* Oil and/or moisturising cream to make a slurry

* Green or pink clay

* a little water


Bases for Your Face

* moisturising cream on its own or with some white or yellow clay

* almond meal – I love this gentle scrub base for the face


Use a mortar and pestle to grind up anything you want to use in your scrub

Use a mortar and pestle to grind up anything you want to use in your scrub


Additives to Your Bases

* a few drops of essential oil (1 drop for face – 5 drops for body – or a few more) – don’t go overboard you don’t want to burn or irritate your skin, especially if you are adding other botanicals to it

* coffee grains

* almond meal

* fresh rind of lemon/orange/grapefruit/lime

* dried citrus peel

* ground cacao nibs

* ground rose petals

* ground pumice

* dried or fresh herbs

Use your imagination but also your intuition as to what might be good for your face and what is best left for your body.

lovely legs!

lovely legs!

A basic body scrub could look like this:

2 cups fine sea salt

grated lemon rind

3 – 5 drops lavender essential oil

a tablespoon of oil

a tablespoon of clay

a little water or cream to make a gooey paste


A face scrub:

3 teaspoons almond meal

1 teaspoon white clay

a little water to make a paste

1 drop bergamot essential oil


The only issue for me using these types of scrubs is that we are washing the gooey paste down the drain. I think that’s fine for the salt on it’s own but what about the oil and botanicals too?

Stay tuned for more in my Soft, Supple Skin Series and check out my YouTube channel too, thanks.

copryright SR Banks 2015



The Wonderful World of Clay

Pink Clay from Argiletz in France

Pink clay from France – pretty

Clay. In French it’s argile. Clay can be used for many things, including building materials, but we will be looking at clay as a form of therapeutic treatment.

French clays are the most widely used and green clay tops the list of the most popular. All the colours are so beautiful – just look at the pink clay in the pic above. There is also white clay, yellow clay and red clay and I’ve always kept the entire range. When I see them all together it’s soothing to the soul – it’s beautiful enriching colour palette from mother earth. Each colour has a different chemical composition with green being the most powerful in absorption. This is one of the reasons green clay is most popular in beauty treatments like face masks, body masks and baths.

green clay mask

green clay mask

The clays are used to extract and absorb extra “stuff” floating around in your lymph, connective tissue, skin, and extra-cellular spaces where interstitial fluid resides. Some of the clay’s minerals are also absorbed by your skin too. Anyway you look at it, when you’ve had a clay face or body mask you do feel great!

It’s interesting how quickly you feel cold when the clay is smoothed on your skin. The earth is surrounding you with her deep, cool energy. If you’ve ever had a body mask with clay you can get very cold. It’s important that your therapist keeps you wrapped up in towels and blankets so your core temperature doesn’t drop too rapidly.

In general, topical application of clay on the skin will be rejuvenating, clarifying, cooling, help cell renewal, lessen the appearance of spider veins and varicose veins and make you feel like you’ve had a mini holiday.

Of course everyone will recommend different clays for different issues and I probably use green clay the least. I tend to use white clay as it’s more gentle, or mix some white clay with another colour. Here are my tips with my favourite clay at the top – White Clay

White Clay

* gentle face masks and gentle body masks

* in baths

* in body scrubs

* as an absorptive soft powder on a cut or graze

* for eczema and psoriasis – especially for kids

* for rashes or skin disorders on dogs I either just sprinkle it on dry or mix into a smooth paste

Pink Clay

* this is my favourite face clay – face mask when the skin is red or for sufferers of rosacea

* face masks for eczema or psoriasis on the face

* anytime you need a good facial cleanse, and to reduce puffiness

Green Clay

* acne on the face or body either with a mask or just a little dotted on a spot

* face or body mask for oily skin

* body mask when you are doing a detox to help with the processing of toxins out of your system

* cellulite (it does help but I haven’t found anything yet to get rid of it completely – ugh!)

yellow clay

yellow clay

Yellow Clay

* face and body masks and to add to body scrubs particularly when the skin is dull and needs energy – it really brightens the skin

Red Clay

* I tend not to use this clay as much as the others but this one is great for spider veins, red skin, broken capillaries

And of course adding essential oils to your clay treatment turns it into something else all together.

I’ve got more to say on clay so stay tuned for recipes and Australian clay in The Wonderful World of Clay – Part 2.


copyright suzannerbanks 2013