DIY: Tea Tree and Lemon Face and Body Scrub

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It’s here, Nerdship. Summer. Hot. Sunny. Summer. It’s the time of year when most of us make an effort to venture outdoors and have fun underneath the Day Ball. Barbeques, picnics, and outdoor concerts run amuck and we think that those are pretty awesome.  It’s also the time of year when we opt for lighter/shorter clothing options. With HQ being in the smack dab middle of Oklahoma, it gets REALLY hot in the summer time (though with full disclosure being what it is, it’s actually been a pretty nice summer so far but now that I’ve said something it’s probably going to get stupidly hot from now till the beginning of winter. Oklahoma’s climate is a mess, Nerdship. It does not know how to make up it’s mind.).

With the shedding of layers and shorter crops of clothes like shorts, tank tops, etc… we expose our skin to the elements. I will admit that I’m not the best when it comes to taking care of my skin but I’m slowly working on it. One of the things that I’ve found works is exfoliation. Exfoliating your skin is beneficial in for removing the dead skin, promoting circulation, and helping your skin glow. Just don’t go to the extreme like in Gattaca.

There are THOUSANDS of DIY scrub recipes out there on the web. I’ve tried several but many times I’ve found them either lacking or not doing what I want them to do… so I came up with one that covers all the bases. Woot! And the best part is, you probably have most if not all ingredients in your house already!

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Before I go into how to make the scrub, I’d like to throw a little PSA out there when it comes to store-bought exfoliating scrubs. If you want to skip ahead just continue past this part. Over the last few years there has been a major trend or push for companies to add non-degradable exfoliants like tiny glass or plastic beads to their products and it’s started to cause issues. Sure, what’s the harm in my little bottle of body scrub… it’s so tiny and the beads are even smaller. Well your tiny exfoliating beads plus everyone else’s tiny beads really adds up and it’s starting to cause a buildup in the rivers, lakes, and oceans that your water inevitably ends up in once it washes down your drain. Fact: One 5oz container of exfoliating scrub can have at least 350,000 micro beads in it.

Photo courtesy 5 Gyres Institute

It’s a fairly recent problem that’s crept up over the last two decades so long-term studies on the effects it will have on the environment are still a little hazy, but scientists have already said that it is having negative effects on the local ecosystems. A study conducted by the 5 Gyres Institute found that there was over 1.7 million microbeads per 1sq mile of the several of the Great Lakes. The beads are so small that they pass right through most filtration stations at your local waste management facilities. Those tiny plastic beads (called micro plastics) are somewhat worse than their glass counterparts since they eventually absorb organic pollutants and then leach those pollutants out into the bodies of fish and other marine creatures that unknowingly consume them.

Good news is 5 states (Illinois, New York, Minnesota, Ohio, and California) have some proposed legislation in the works that will hopefully ban the use and distribution of products containing those pesky microbeads. It took 10 years for something to be done about DDT, I’m glad that it’s not taking that long for something to be done about the microbeads. Companies like Proctor and Gamble, Johnson & Johnson, and Unilever are making strides to completely phase out the use of microplastics as exfoliants or abrasives by 2015. So that’s good to know.

Enough scary stuff. Let’s makes some face & body scrub. 

If you’ve frequented the blog before, you’ve probably read about our Stinky Feet Scrub. I swear by that stuff especially in the summer now that it’s getting hot and sweaty outside. Body odor is a fact of life but there are ways to tame it. 🙂 Yay hygiene!

Like I mentioned above, I’ve tried LOTS of DIY facial scrubs and several either made me breakout or just didn’t do what I wanted them to do. I knew that I wanted to make one that would help combat my acne as well as moisturizer my skin. Thus this scrub was born! /angelic chorus!

Tea Tree & Lemon Face and Body Scrub

Transform your skin into awesome silky smoothness.

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Ingredients:

  • 2/3 c of brown sugar | Light exfoliant
  • 1/2 – 2/3 c of turbinado (RAW) sugar | Hard exfoliant
  • 1/2 c of baking soda | Light exfoliant plus redness reducer.
  • 1/2 c of extra virgin olive oil. You can add more or less depending on the consistency you want for your scrub. (I’ve also used coconut oil, sweet almond oil, and avocado oil in this scrub as well. All were awesome so I suggest experimenting with them if you have them.) | Moisturizer and skin softener
  • 1/3 c of honey | Antibacterial, moisturizer, full of antioxidants, and it opens up pores so you can unclog them.
  • 10-15 drops of tea tree essential oil. (Find this at your local craft store or online.) | | Antibacterial, reduces redness, and helps treat acne
  • 1/2 of a lemon, juiced. | Astringent
  • Storage jars (with lids) for your finished scrub.

Makes about 12oz of finished product. I divided them into 3 4oz jars. 

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Directions:

  1. Combine all of your sugars  into a mixing bowl.TeaTreeAndLemonFaceAndBodyScrub_NerdsAndNomsense-2
  2. Add in your oil and mix until all the sugar is coated in the oily goodness. This will help so that the honey and lemon juice doesn’t break down the sugars since the sugar is basically your exfoliant. Your sweet, sweet exfoliant.TeaTreeAndLemonFaceAndBodyScrub_NerdsAndNomsense-3
  3. Add in your baking soda and mix thoroughly.TeaTreeAndLemonFaceAndBodyScrub_NerdsAndNomsense-5
  4. Pour in the honey and tea tree essential oil.TeaTreeAndLemonFaceAndBodyScrub_NerdsAndNomsense-4
  5. Lastly add in the lemon juice. It should foam and bubble a little bit, but that’s science for you.TeaTreeAndLemonFaceAndBodyScrub_NerdsAndNomsense-6
  6. Divide it into your storage jars. Store unused product in the fridge, lasts up to 2-3 weeks. Gift this to your friends and help promote super awesome skin! TeaTreeAndLemonFaceAndBodyScrub_NerdsAndNomsense-7

To use on the face: Scoop out 2-3 tablespoons worth of scrub and gently scrub over the entire face. Take a wash cloth and continue to exfoliate any areas that need a little more attention: nose, chin, etc… Let it sit for 3-5 minutes then rinse off. Continue with your favorite face wash. I recommend that you don’t use the exfoliant more than once or twice a week.

This stuff really makes my skin super smooth… like baby bottom smooth, guys. It’s epic.

To use on the body: Scoop a little out on to a wash cloth and scrub in circular motions. Be sure to pay extra attention to your legs and arms. Just rinse and follow with your favorite body wash or soap. If you fake tan, exfoliating helps keep your ‘tan’ longer and helps it absorb into your skin. 

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*Thoughts on this scrub: There are several differing views around the internet on whether or not it’s safe or wise to use baking soda or lemon (citrus) juice on the face area. Personally, I have used this scrub for the last few months have haven’t noticed any adverse reactions – and my skin is finicky. As long as you make sure to not get any of the scrub around your immediate eye area. Also if you have any open sores, little nicks, or cuts the lemon juice will sting a bit. I have combination, acne prone skin and this stuff really helps.

**Note: the olive oil will slightly separate from the sugars in the container. This is okay. Just give it a quick stir when you’re ready to use it. Also, since we’re working with olive oil your tub or shower may be slick. Don’t slip and be sure to rinse the area out once you’ve finished that way the others that use the bathroom as well don’t slip either.**

Do you have a favorite body/face scrub DIY? Let us know in the comments below so we can check it out as well. 

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