There are a lot of great body scrubs out there, but if you’re very particular or you want to save some money, you might prefer to make your own DIY body scrub. Learning how to make body scrub at home is incredibly easy. If you like to play around with crafts, you’ll have a lot of fun trying out a few body scrub recipes.
We’ve designed three body scrub recipes for every skin type to set you on the path of DIY. However, no two people are the same, so we also included some customization tips to help you make your scrub even more suitable to your needs and preferences. Are you ready to give these a try?
In this article:
- DIY Body Scrub Recipe for Dry Skin
- Salt Body Scrub for Oily Skin
- Oat Body Scrub for Sensitive Skin
- Customizing Your Homemade Body Scrub
- How to Store Your Homemade Body Scrub
- How Long Does DIY Body Scrub Last?
This sugar-based homemade body scrub is ultra-simple but super moisturizing to dry skin. It’s made with sugar, which has natural humectant effects, and coconut oil, which is deeply moisturizing to the skin.
- 1 oz. sugar
- 2 oz. coconut oil
- 5-10 drops of essential oil of your choice
- Place the coconut oil in a microwave-safe bowl, and put it in the microwave for 30-60 seconds on a low-power setting.
- Once the oil has melted but isn’t hot to the touch, add the sugar and essential oils.
- Mix everything together thoroughly, and then seal it in a jar or tin.
- Give the coconut oil time to solidify at room temperature. Once the mixture is thick and a little solid again, you’ll be able to use it.
If you have oily skin, you’ll want to avoid heavy oils like coconut oil. Thankfully, there are still oils out there that are appropriate for your skin! Grape seed oil is a great option because it’s very light, non-greasy, and non-comedogenic. It’s also very affordable, which is a nice bonus!
If you’d rather make the body scrub without oil, you can use honey instead, which will add a hydrating touch.
- 1.5 oz. salt
- 2 oz. grape seed oil
- 5-10 drops of tea tree oil
- This one comes together quickly and easily, with no need for heat!
- In a jar or tin, mix together the grape seed oil, salt, and essential oils.
- Seal it, and it’ll be ready to use right away.
This simple, extra-gentle DIY body scrub combines skin-soothing coconut oil, which is rich in anti-inflammatory lauric acid, with ultra-calming oatmeal. You can purchase oatmeal flour to save yourself a few steps or just use whatever oatmeal you already have at home.
This recipe doesn’t include essential oils because those can be quite irritating to sensitive skin. If your skin doesn’t usually react to fragrance, you can add a few drops of your favorite essential oil.
Additionally, if you have oily sensitive skin or you’re acne-prone, you can swap out the coconut oil. Instead, try grape seed oil or high-linoleic sunflower oil, both of which are lighter and less likely to cause breakouts.
- 1 oz. oatmeal
- 2 oz. coconut oil
- In a food processor or coffee grinder, blitz the oatmeal, so it achieves a finer, powdery texture.
- In the microwave, melt the coconut oil gently on very low heat.
- Then, in a jar, combine the coconut oil and oatmeal powder. Give the blend a good mix, so the powder gets thoroughly dispersed through the coconut oil.
- Once the coconut oil reaches a slightly thicker texture, you’ll be able to give this scrub a try!
These homemade body scrub recipes are pretty simple, but you can alter them if you wish, especially if you don’t have certain ingredients on hand.
The oil in your body scrub doesn’t matter too much. Unlike leave-on products, the oils in your scrub won’t stay on your skin for long, so you don’t need to worry too much about their various properties. So, if all you have in your house is olive oil, mineral oil, or even plain vegetable oil, those can work just fine!
In general, though, we like coconut oil, especially for sensitive or dry skin. It’s a rich oil, and it’s also solid at room temperature, so it’s less likely to get everywhere when you try to get it out of the jar.
If you do decide to use liquid oil, make sure to reduce the oil-to-exfoliant ratio, which will guarantee a mixture that’s not too runny.
If you have oily skin, you might prefer a non-comedogenic oil, like grape seed oil, castor oil, or high-linoleic sunflower oil. On the other hand, for dry skin, rich oils like almond oil, jojoba oil, or apricot oil might be a better choice.
However, unless you’re severely acne-prone, you don’t have to worry too much.
The actual scrubby bits in your body scrub can also make a difference.
Sugar is an easy go-to because it offers the right level of exfoliation for most bodies, it has some hydrating effects, and it dissolves away in shower water, which leaves you with a mess-free bathroom.
Salt is just as easy to use, but it can be a little rougher, especially if you opt for kosher salt or Epsom salt. However, salt also has some unique benefits. It has some anti-inflammatory effects (although we’re doubtful they’d make a difference in a scrub – you may want to opt for a soak instead), and we find that it offers a better clarifying effect for oily skin.
One thing to keep in mind is a salt-based body scrub may sting a little if you’ve just finished shaving or if you have any scrapes on your skin.
Oatmeal is another option that we love for sensitive skin. It’s less abrasive than salt and sugar, and it also has anti-inflammatory effects, so you can even leave it on like a body mask.
Coffee grounds have also become very popular in DIY body scrubs in recent years. It’s super easy to make a coffee body scrub, and the result is a great exfoliation similar to using sugar. Many sources like to claim coffee scrubs can help with cellulite, but that’s almost definitely untrue. Finally, the big downside is that it can be very difficult to clean coffee grounds away from your shower, which is why we don’t really recommend it.
Essential oils are ultra-concentrated liquids that hold the essence (i.e. smell) from a particular plant. They’re extracted through a complex process of distillation, and they smell like a more intense version of whatever they’re made from.
We usually tell those with sensitive skin to stay away from essential oils, but for everyone else, they offer a whole world of fragrance! With body scrubs, especially, having a nice smell is a big part of the experience.
It’s totally up to you which essential oils you use in your body scrub. However, it’s also important you don’t overuse them. The greater the quantity of essential oil in your formula, the higher the risk of irritation, even when your skin isn’t particularly sensitive.
As a rule, never use more than 5 drops of essential oil to 1 ounce of body scrub. Often, you can achieve a gorgeous scent even with just half this amount!
So which scent should you choose? There are thousands of options out there, so here are some of our favorites:
- Floral: Lavender, jasmine, rose, ylang-ylang, neroli, and geranium.
- Citrusy: Lemon, lime, orange, bergamot, lemongrass, and yuzu.
- Cozy: Vanilla, tonka bean, cinnamon, coffee, chamomile, ginger, and clove.
- Herbal: Clary sage, peppermint, rosemary, thyme, and marjoram.
- Woodsy: Tea tree, cedarwood, sandalwood, frankincense, and pine.
You can also try to combine a few different essential oils to achieve a signature scent!
Any jar or tin will work to store your body scrub! You can reuse any glass jars you have lying around your house, or you can purchase tins that you find online. If you’re a little clumsy or you have small children in the house, you may want to avoid the glass and opt for metal or plastic containers instead.
What’s important is that you choose a container from which it’ll be easy to scoop out the scrub and that also has a sealable lid to prevent moisture or impurities from finding their way in.
Once you finish making your scrub, make sure to leave the container in a clear, cool, and dry place where it’ll stay safe. To keep things extra clean, use a skincare spatula to get out the scrub instead of your hands.
The shelf life of your homemade body scrub largely depends on how you end up storing and using it. Since all of these body scrub recipes are formulated without water, they can actually last for a few weeks or even months at room temperature.
Problems can crop up if you introduce any water into your jar of body scrub. The mix of water and oil can breed pathogens that’ll destroy your scrub within just a day or two. If you manage to keep your jar tightly sealed in a cool, dry environment, it’ll keep for a while, but if you accidentally leave it open in the shower or use wet fingers to scoop up some product, it’s best to just throw it away and make a new batch.
Photos via @herbivorebotanicals, Instagram