Body polishing works to remove dead skin cells and improve the overall skin appearance. It works to produce smoother, firmer and more supple skin. But what is the difference between body polish and body scrub? How do you DIY it at home? How does body polish work? We detail it all below!
In this article:
- What Is Body Polish?
- How Does Body Polishing Works?
- Body Polish vs Body Scrub: What’s The Difference?
- Body Polish Benefits
- Body Polishing at Home: Procedure Steps to Follow
- 7 Homemade Body Polish Recipes
What Is Body Polish?
If you are familiar with body massage, you will understand this idea faster. Just the way oil is used in massage, this is how body polishes are used.
Body polish is a product used in form of a spa treatment to exfoliate the skin. While the aim of body massage is to relax the muscle, this product is used to make the skin soft and smooth.
The aim of body polish is to make the skin look healthy and glow. You could compare it to a facial, but it is used on a wider part of the skin. The ingredients include – if you want to prepare a body polish at home – sugar, salt, honey, oats, walnut shell powder, olive oil, etc.
In simple terms, body polish is a skincare product that is applied like it is massage oil but it only helps the skin to become healthy.
How Does Body Polishing Works?
Body polishes are usually applied in a wet room, or call it a sauna cubicle, depending on the place. The floor of such a room is tiled and well drained. There should be a desk or table at the centre for you to lie.
Optionally you will wear disposable underwear. The desk on which you lie is usually covered with a towel, a piece of cloth or plastic. Like you want to enjoy a massage, you will lie on your tummy, and the steam in the room will open your skin pores. The therapist will work on your back and arms, and other areas. She will apply the body polish suitable for your skin type on your body.
The areas she is not working on will be covered if necessary. After working on your back, you will roll over for her to work on another side of your body. The use of body polish ends here. And depending on what you want, the process could end here.
If you want extra benefits, before the process, you could ask for the service of body polishing with a body massage. You will develop a glowing skin with body polishing, and you will have relaxed muscles with a body massage.
So after the process ends, and a hot, moist towel has been used to clean the skin, the therapist will apply oil on the skin. This could be aromatic essential oils that moisturize and relax the skin.
After the process, you will shower. This is necessary to wash the product leftovers. Avoid shower solution, as this will ensure the fragrance remains on your skin.
And if the facility is available, the therapist will help you wash off with a Vichy shower or handheld shower. Depending on the available facility, the therapist can improvise and use a hot towel to wipe your body clean. This, of course, will remove the exfoliant.
Because a therapist is working on your body does not mean you will not feel inconvenient at times. Salt and some other exfoliants could be abrasive, so if they are a little painful, let your therapist know.
Body Polish vs Body Scrub: What’s The Difference?
Don’t miss it. They work differently, and the effect is different. If you are familiar with one, say body scrub, you will notice that scrubs only help cleanse the body. Then, what is the work of body polish?
First, let’s consider the process.
- Body Polish: A collection of ingredients including salt, sugar, coffee grounds, rice bran, will be mixed with oil and applied to your body. You can get body polishing alone or you could get it with a message – as you wish.
- Body Scrub: Here, the skin is to be exfoliated. This can be done using the abrasive product, which is rubbed or massaged on the skin. This process will get rid of dead skin cells, remove flaky and hard skin. And the skin would eventually feel soft, fresh and alive. If you wish to use oils in exfoliating, it is usually after using the scrub.
Form the above you will realize that body scrub is more of an exfoliating process, while body polish is more of a treatment meant to enrich the skin.
Body scrub seems to be the one with a higher number of benefits. Aside from removing the dead cells in the skin, it helps to improve blood circulation. Although it is slightly painful than using body polish, it can help to prevent cellulite. And the skin tone will improve.
Scrubs could serve as the first step for you to body polish. After exfoliating the skin, it becomes easier for other products to penetrate and be more effective. By opening up the pores, it gives room for mud treatment and body oils to penetrate to stimulate your senses and make you feel relaxed.
The body polish is rich in butter and ingredients that form a lot of foams. When you use them, you will see bubbles; it will make your skin feel soft and silky. If you just return from a long vacation and want a more gentle process to preserve tan, body polish is the way to go.
So generally, body scrubs might be doing two jobs together: exfoliating and cleansing. They can be done at home. When you are preparing for a holiday, body scrubs are recommended.
Body polishes are mostly done in the spa, mostly as a pre-mud treatment.
The two are often interwoven because a slight turn of process or change in ingredients can make a scrub become a polish.
Body Polish Benefits
Aside from being a pleasant skin treatment, body polishes bring lots of benefits with them for your skin.
Skin polish helps to remove dead skin cells and makes the skin look healthier and fresher. How? After the dead cells are gone, this process moves further to layers of skin that are healthier, and yeah, younger than the previous.
With dead cells removed, the skin becomes new, giving out a brilliant, soft, gorgeous look. The dull look of your skin will go off with a well-executed use of body polish. And if you want the skin to regain its beauty after sun damage, body polishing can help in the process.
The skin is moisturized after body polishing. For those who want a deeper form of hydration, body polishing is the best option.
Skin polish removes dirt and oil stains that might be on the skin. Cleaning is done as the therapist – or whoever – is washing off the skin, with a Vichy, a handheld shower, or a hot, moist towel.
You remember how massaging works? In a similar fashion, as hands move on your back, your arms and your thighs, working the skin polish, the blood flow through the body increases. Especially if the hands are a little gritty, the effect will make the skin relax, and the blood circulation will improve. Body polishing also increases the oxygen supply to the skin.
Makes Other Skincare Products More Effective
During the body polishing, the skin pores become alive, making the surface of the skin ready for other product application. This will improve better product penetration, making other skincare products be more effective.
A Prep for a Spray Tan
Before you continue activities like a spray tan or body wrap, you will have to give your body some polishing. Especially, if you want a seaweed or mud wrap, you will need to undergo body polishing. And it is just more useful to do this process before you do spray tan or add any other body-tanning product.
Body Polishing at Home: Procedure Steps to Follow
If you look at our discussions, it seems you can get this done at spas with the help of a therapist. Or you will need help, at least to work on your behind. That’s true. But that does not cut out the possibility of doing this body polishing at home. How?
Before we say how these are the things that could help:
- Drink water. Getting hydrated will make the quality of your skin improve.
- Eat food that has Omega-3 and 6, antioxidants, and vitamins A, C and E. Fish and flax seeds are rich in Omega-3 and 6. Antioxidants include berries, red fruits, beet, green, tea, beans, and peppers. Vitamin C is found in citrus, kiwi, fruit, broccoli, brussels, sprouts, and papaya. Vitamin A is found in cantaloupe, low-fat dairy and carrots. Vitamin E is found in olive oil, spinach, asparagus, vegetables oils and seeds.
- Get the right tools available in the market: pumice stone, exfoliating washcloth, large-looped washcloth, one piece of flannel, cotton gloves, an optional sable fur mitt, a pair of cotton gloves, a pair of silk gloves.
- Moisturize your skin daily with nutritious oils like coconut oil, olive oil or shea butter.
- Stay away from soaps for a while. Soaps are alkaline and could cause irritation, flaking and cracking. Use non-soap cleansers, as they have the normal Ph for your skin.
- Take a warm bath to get the skin prepared. You could stay in a warm bathtub for about 20 minutes. Alternatively, you could wear a warm sweater.
- First, after the bath, moisturize the skin. Use coconut oil or any other essential oils to lubricate the skin.
- Apply the body polish to every part of your body. Make circular motions with an oil-covered hand to perform this process. Use some little force as you apply your skin polish to remove dead cells.
- Use the pumice stone to work on tough areas. Rub the stone gently on this area to make it soft.
- The areas you work on with pumice stones need more attention. Use more body polish in such areas than others.
- Rinse off the skin polish.
- After rinsing off the polish, use a towel to gently dry the skin.
- Use regular body moisturizers on the dry skin.
- Before you polish, you should have been eating nutritious food for a week or two. During the same period, increase your intake of water to at least 10 glasses per day.
- Test your body polish on a small part of your body before you use it fully. You could use it on the back of your palm. Depending on your skin reaction, you will choose the skin polish or get a better one. Alternatively, you can make a new one by yourself (we will teach you later in this post).
- The aim of the bath is to open your pores, so make it a pleasant bubble bath.
- Study your body: if there are other areas you think are tough excluding the knees and elbows, use the pumice stone to work on them.
- Regular moisturizers are applied to the skin to keep it hydrated. Use it after the process of body polishing has been executed.
- Use skin polish just once a week. And depending on your skin reaction, this could increase to once in a month.
- Avoid soaps for at least one day after the process.
Body Polishing Aftercare
After you are done with the process, there are certain things that would help the skin. This should not be confused with the previous tips we mentioned. These are necessary after you have completed your body polishing process, and when you are doing your day-to-day activities afterwards.
Here they are:
- Give your skin some break after the process. After you have completed the process, give your skin time to absorb the benefits of the body polish before you wash it off. And don’t add any chemical products to your skin afterwards because the skin is supple and prone to irritation at this stage.
- Soaps and strong cosmetics are to be avoided too. Soaps are alkaline products and tend to make the skin dry by taking away the hydrating effect of the body polish.
- Notice side effects. If there is any, ensure it is treated, and stay away from the body polish you have been using. It will be wiser to test the product before you apply it to your skin.
- Natural products are the best for body polishing.
- Avoid the sun. The skin at this stage is more sensitive, and you are likely to get a sunburn. If you must walk or work under the sun, use a sunscreen. You will want to reapply the sunscreen at intervals if you stay for long under the sun.
- To maximize the benefits of a body polishing, do exfoliation after some days.
7 Homemade Body Polish Recipes
You might have tried the manufactured body polishes, and the result is one long, sad story. Or just want something simple you could try at home and use after so many times of using manufactured products. Here are seven options for you to try at home, and like you expect, your skin would get a new natural look the next time you show us pictures.
Just before you proceed, make sure you pick the right ingredients for your body polish according to your skin type.
- Sea and bath salts are excellent for those with oily skin.
- If you have dry skin, go for brown sugar as the main ingredient.
- Sugar-based body polishes are good for those with normal skin types.
- Those with sensitive skin should include shea butter in their homemade body polish to avoid any skin irritation.
1. Sugar & Orange Body polish
You will need 2/3 cup of brown sugar or fine white sugar of the same quantity, and half a cup of olive oil. Mix the two ingredients. Your DIY body polish is ready for use.
2. Strawberry Body Polish
You will need 5 pulps of strawberries, half a cup of sugar, and honey. Blend in the ingredients together. The skin polish would help the skin become fresh and young.
3. Sea Salt Body Polish
You will need a full cup of pure sea salt, ½ cup of honey, 2 tablespoon of aloe vera gel, and few drops of tea tree oil. Mix the ingredients together to make a gentle and skin-smoothing homemade body polish.
4. Salt & Sugar Body Polish
Combine 1/2 cup of brown sugar and the same amount of salt with 1/2 cup of honey. Get a granular paste, and use on the skin as necessary.
5. Lavender Body Polish
This option can help prevent aging. You will need 1 cup of brown sugar, 1,5 tablespoon of olive oil, 1 tablespoon of honey, and a few petals of rose and lavender flowers. Mix them together. Then, add a few drops of lavender essential oil and stir. Your weapon against aging is ready.
6. Mixed Fruits Body Polish
Get some fruits like papaya, apple and banana. Extract some quantity of fruit pulp, add 1 tablespoon of oatmeal, 3 tablespoons of honey, some milk, mix and shake well. Use as massage.
7. Lime & Coconut Body Polish
You will need 1 cup of coconut oil, 1/2 cup of avocado oil, 3 cups of turbinado sugar, 1 cup of dark brown sugar, the zest of 4 limes. Mix coconut oil and avocado oil in a glass bowl (if the mixture feels greasy, next time you could cut out the avocado oil entirely). Then add the other ingredients and mix. Seal the mixture into a container and use.
Photos via @ashleighdmello, Instagram