Safe and Effective Exfoliators (for face and body)

There’s nothing like a full body exfoliation after I’ve been slathering on sunblock all day. Afterwards, my skin feels refreshed and squeaky clean (no seriously, it squeaks). I started exfoliating my skin at least once a week when I lived in Washington D.C. – the practice has stuck with me over the years and gives my skin a quick reset. There is something relaxing and cathartic about taking the time to exfoliate your body, an intimate moment for relaxation and renewal.

Disclaimer: This post contains some Amazon affiliate links, which means if you make a purchase I earn a (very) small commission, at no extra cost to you. 

My favorite ways to exfoliate:

Exfoliating Gloves ~$5 a pair

Exfoliating gloves are an important part of my shower and bath routine. They provide an easy way to get a full body exfoliation and can be washed with the rest of your laundry. I recommend using the gloves at the end of your shower or bath for maximum exfoliation.

Gentle Exfoliator Polishing Cream – $34

This cream face cleanser has natural jojoba esters to exfoliate your skin, rather than pollution-causing plastic microbeads. The best part of this face wash is it works triple time: as a gentle exfoliator, toner and make up remover. This tube lasts a long time, I have had mine for four months and it’s still going strong!

Glow Sugar Scrub – $40

Beautycounter’s Glow Sugar Scrub is like going to the spa, but it’s Tuesday and you’re in your bathtub. When I take a bath this is my go-to body exfoliator. You’ll be impressed by the exfoliation from the organic sugar and the wonderful citrus smell of the oil. HINT: Men love this just as much (or more) than women.

DIY Body Scrub ~ $10

Check out this amazing DIY cinnamon coffee scrub from Carissa at Creative Green Living. I would recommend using this in the morning for a pre-work pick me up. Other recipes include a pomegranate body scrub from Dr. Karen Lee and a collection of 15 sugar scrub recipes from Turning Back the Clock.

Exfoliators I Don’t Like:

  • Chemical Peels: These are questionably effective and simultaneously very bad for your health (read more from the New York Times on the links to cancer here.)
  • Dry Brushing: Many of my friends swear by this but it’s just not for me. I like more of a thorough exfoliation, this is too gentle for my taste.
  • Exfoliators with Plastic Microbeads: Many companies are (still!) using plastic in face and body washes which are not effective exfoliators and are also a major source of pollution in our oceans, Great Lakes and rivers.

Post-Exfoliation Treatment:

After exfoliating, I like to let my skin just be for a few hours. And then I moisturize using pure, oil-based products.

  • Organic Coconut Oil ~$10: This is an affordable, safe moisturizer for your whole body. This can be a little messy and stain clothing however. If you do not want the strong coconut smell, opt for refined coconut oil. Try Nutiva’s Organic Virgin Coconut Oil – 2 Pack for $20.
  • Lustro Body Oil Rosemary Citrus – $68: A luxurious and safe body oil that absorbs quickly into the skin leaving it moisturized but not greasy.
  • Lustro Face Oil Ylang Ylang and Chamomile – $64: According to Beautycounter this Lustro Face Oil is,

A luxurious blend of seven radiance-boosting oils—including organic argan nut, organic grapeseed, organic marula, meadowfoam seed, rosehip, rose otto and sea buckthorn—deeply nourishes skin with antioxidants and vitamins.”

  • Egyptian Magic ~ $37: A wonderful all purpose skin creamthat can be used for dry hands, knees or elbows, or a hydrating night cream.

And remember, healthy skin is about taking care of your whole body. Be sure to get adequate sleep, regular exercise, healthy foods, and drink plenty filtered water.

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