Sugar may get a bad rap in sweets, but it’s an excellent ingredient in skincare.Sugar is a natural humectant, meaning it draws moisture from the environment into the skin. So when you apply products with sugar or sugar derivatives, they’ll actually help hydrate your skin and keep moisture within.
Sugar’s small particles make an excellent topical exfoliant, and are used in a number of body scrubs to exfoliate dead surface skin cells and reveal the glowing, healthy-looking skin underneath. Sugar scrubs also have a few benefits over salt scrubs. For one, small sugar granules are generally gentler than salt, which can cause microscopic tears in the skin; two, because of sugar’s natural humectants properties, these scrubs are more hydrating than salt scrubs, which can strip the skin of natural oils.
You can make a simple sugar scrub at home using basic brown sugar, olive oil, and a few drops of your favorite essential oil for fragrance. I like ginger — the warming, spicy scent opens up the senses. You can also mix ginger with a few drops of citrus essential oil (like grapefruit or orange) for an awakening kick.
For the face, mix sugar, honey, and a few drops of lemon juice to hydrate, clarify, and reveal softer skin.
You only need to use a topical sugar scrub about twice per week. Sugar scrubs are great to use in the winter, as exfoliating the top layer of skin helps moisturizers penetrate more deeply and hydrate longer.
- 1clear plastic jar
- 1cup sugar
- 1⁄2cup extra virgin olive oil
- lemon juice (optional)
- scented essential oil (optional)
- mix the sugar and olive oil in the plastic container. I do not recomend using a glass jar for this, since you will most likely have this in your bathroom.
- add any optional scents you like. I have discovered that adding peppermint oil or orange oil helps refresh you, while lavender is more soothing. My favorite oil to use is sandlewood.
- to use: place some on a wash cloth and rub in circles anywhere you need exfoliation. After letting it sit for a while the sugar may settle to the bottom, so it may be necessary to shake this up a little before using.