As a Vegan, and someone who has very sensitive skin, I’ve always struggled with finding skin care products that worked for me. Store bought lotions would either dry me out, or cause break outs. Trying to find cruelty free soaps, scrubs, and lotions was a constant battle. And don’t even get me started on how many store-bought products have ingredients that I really honestly wouldn’t dream about putting in my body (so why would I put them on my body?) This eventually led me to doing a lot of DIY bath & beauty products. So here is one of my favorites; my DIY Himalayan Salt Body Scrub (detoxifying, smoothing, moisturizing, plant-based, and free of harsh chemicals)!
Note that if you have extremely sensitive skin, I would recommend testing this on your wrist after you make it, to be certain of no reactions. Or you may wish to forego doing a salt scrub, and choose to use sugar instead (sugar is less coarse). I have very sensitive skin, and I suffer from Keratosis Pilaris, but this scrub does beautifully on my skin (better than any store-bought body scrub I’ve ever tried).
What are the benefits of salt scrubs?
While exfoliating/scrubbing our skin isn’t necessary, it can be very beneficial for a lot of reasons!
Exfoliating removes the top layer of dead skin cells, revealing newer, fresher, smoother skin underneath. It also paves the way for new skin cells to regenerate! Your skin will be much softer, and in the case of our recipe, moisturized from the added oils!
Stimulates the Lymphatic System
Massaging salt into the skin in circular motions can help to increase movement in your lymphatic system. This, in turn, helps to detoxify your body and keep your immune system in tip-top shape.
Salts contain minerals, like magnesium, that can help reduce inflammation and redness.
What ingredients are used?
Exfoliates & smoothes skin, reduces inflammation, and isn’t as coarse as other salts (better for sensitive skin). It helps to reduce muscle pain and tension, & is rich in magnesium. Buy Epsom salts here.
Fine Grain Himalayan Salt
Exfoliates & smoothes skin. Rich in trace minerals like calcium, magnesium, & iron. Has detoxifying and healing properties. Boosts circulation. Himalayan salt is also a little more coarse, and therefore is good for areas that need a little more attention – like knees and elbows, or areas where skin is very rough. I have Keratosis Pilaris so I love this for my ‘chicken skin.’
Detoxifying, brightens skin, helps even skin tone. Balances the PH of the scrub (baking soda is alkaline, but skin is naturally slightly acidic – the lemon juice helps). Antibacterial (great for armpits). Rich in Vitamin C & antioxidants.
Removes excess dirt, is a gentle exfoliator. Brightens complexion. Soothes itchy, burned, or irritated skin. Has antibacterial properties. Soothes inflammation, and is detoxifying.
Rehydrates the skin after exfoliating with salt. The special fatty acids in coconut oil naturally balance the saturated to unsaturated fatty acids levels in the skin. As a result, skin can more easily heal and repair itself from sun damage, wrinkles, etc. Coconut oil also has antibacterial & anti-fungal properties. It can also help to restore skins elasticity. However, we use less of this and more of our other oils because coconut oil can clog our drains if we use too much. So we use this ingredient sparingly. This is my favorite coconut oil brand . I buy it in large quantities since I use it for so many things, and it lasts forever (and is less expensive this way!)
Sweet Almond Oil (or Vitamin E Oil)
Sweet almond oil is a mild, thinner oil that is great for skin. It is moisturizing, won’t clog pores, and and is hypoallergenic – perfect for sensitive skin! Almond oil also protects skin from UV radiation, and can slow down sun damage after it has already happened (great for applying after a sunburn!) It is also high in Vitamin A. Almond oil also helps to relieve inflammation, itchiness and redness. I used this brand of almond oil. But I also highly recommend this Jason’s Vitamin E oil (my skin loves it)!
Peppermint Essential Oil
Peppermint essential oil really packs a punch! It contains omega-3 fatty acids, iron, magnesium, calcium, Vitamins A and C, minerals, potassium, manganese and copper. It contains menthol, an organic compound with anesthetic properties that helps soothe itchiness, redness, and pain. Peppermint oil also has antiviral, antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, and antispasmodic properties. Additionally, it brightens skin, and can help with acne breakouts. Peppermint oil also improves circulation. I used this brand, but there are many Essential oil brands out there that are much stronger. Just be sure to look for a brand that is ‘therapeutic grade.’
DIY Himalayan Salt Body Scrub
DIY HIMALAYAN SALT BODY SCRUB RECIPE
Makes 2 cups
3/4 Cup Himalayan Salt
1 Cup Epsom Salts
1/4 Cup Baking Soda
2 Tbsp Sweet Almond Oil
3 Tbsp Coconut Oil – Melted
Juice of 1 small Lemon (or 1/2 large)
10-20 Drops Peppermint Essential Oil
- In a medium sized mixing bowl, combine your dry ingredients.
- Now, stir in your oils & lemon juice. I recommend adding 1 Tbsp at a time until the desired consistency is reached. You may end up wanting a more oily scrub than I did. You want the salt to be completely covered in oil.
- Add your peppermint oil drops. You can easily customize this with different essential oils to suit your needs.
- Spoon into a 16oz widemouth jar. Do not compress the salt, and leave room at the top. If you press the scrub into the jar, it can solidify into a hard block, making it difficult to spoon out with your fingers.
- To use: while showering, pick up a small amount in clean dry hands (about 1/2 tsp) and gently scrub each area of your body in small circular motions. I typically have to grab more scrub as I move to each limb/my toros/chest, etc. However keep in mind that a little goes a long way! Salt scrubs don’t dissolve as quickly as sugar scrubs, so you don’t need to use as much each time.
**I recommend using this scrub within 2 months of making it. Avoid getting water into the jar as much as possible to keep the ingredients fresh. Apply with clean hands. Using on scratches, cuts, or abrasions will cause stinging.**