If you’ve been yearning for smoother, more radiant and moisturised skin then you’re probably familiar with exfoliants. Available as spa treatments as well as at-home products, exfoliants such as body scrubs and body polishes may offer similar results but are actually quite different. When it comes to taking care of your body, it’s important to know the subtle differences in your beauty products and become well-versed in the benefits of their ingredients so that you can achieve radiant, supple skin.
When choosing between a natural body scrub or body polish, pay attention to what your skin needs, your skin type, what season it is, and if you intend on following your exfoliation with another skin treatment.1 From here, it will be easier to determine which skin-buffing treatment is best for you.
Slough it off with body scrubs
When compared to body polishes, body scrubs focus more on exfoliation making them an excellent choice for those that have dry, patchy skin. They come in limitless varieties but they all work to shed dead skin, intensely cleanse the pores, boost circulation and reduce cellulite.2 Body scrubs are meant to be rinsed off thoroughly with little moisturising ingredients on the body.
Hydrate and exfoliate with body polishes
Body polishes, on the other hand, are usually gentler and infused with nourishing oils and butters. This two-fold approach makes polishes more suitable exfoliators for dry, sensitive skin. Body polishes are also often infused with beneficial ingredients like essential oils and botanical extracts.3
It’s all in the ingredients
With such a wide spectrum of natural exfoliants, it can be confusing to know which is best for your skin’s needs. From ground seeds to sugar granules, explore the various benefits of these top skin-smoothing ingredients.
Whole apricot seeds are ground into a powder that, when used manually, gently sloughs off dead skin cells. Apricot seed, also known as apricot kernel, has deep moisturising benefits as it's high in fatty acids, vitamins and minerals.4
Pumice stone has long been used to exfoliate rough patches on the feet, knees and elbows. However, pumice powder is also utilised as a natural exfoliant. This volcanic stone removes rough skin which allows your skin to breathe easier giving way to a brighter, clearer complexion.
Used both in cosmetics and cuisine, lotus seeds are renowned for their health benefits around Asia. Working to improve your skin far beyond exfoliation, these powerful seeds contain kaempferol, an inflammation-fighting flavonoid as well as L-isoaspartyl methyltransferase, an anti-ageing protein.
The humble salt is immensely beneficial as a natural scrub for the body. High in magnesium and calcium, salt also improves hydration and has natural antiseptic properties. Due to their high mineral content, sea salt and Himalayan pink salt are ideal as natural scrub exfoliants.
When ground, the hardy walnut shell is terrific for manual exfoliation. However, the walnut shell also holds healing benefits to skin conditions such as blisters, canker sores, psoriasis, acne and eczema.5
Sugar is highly beneficial as a body scrub as it naturally draws in moisture and contains glycolic acid which buffs away dead skin and impurities.6 Sugar granules manually exfoliate the skin but melt down quickly, which makes it a glorious mild exfoliator especially for dry, sensitive skin.
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By Marisse Gabrielle Reyes
- Good Spa Guide. (2014, March 14). Scrubs and body polish. Retrieved September 4, 2019, from https://goodspaguide.co.uk/features/scrubs-and-body-polish.
- DiPasquale, A. The benefits of body scrub, plus our top picks. Retrieved September 4, 2019, from https://www.besthealthmag.ca/best-looks/skin/the-benefits-of-body-scrub-plus-our-top-product-picks/.
- Kojusola, A. (2019, August 1). What is body polishing? 15 best body polishes to try at home. Retrieved September 4, 2019, from https://glowsly.com/skin-body-polishes/.
- Bhagat, J. (2019, May 16). 13 Best benefits of apricot seeds for skin, hair and health. Retrieved October 14, 2019, from https://www.stylecraze.com/articles/benefits-of-apricot-seeds-for-skin-hair-and-health.
- Rai, B. (2017, September 27). Walnut shells work wonders in beauty products. Retrieved October 14, 2019, from https://www.ibtimes.sg/walnut-shells-work-wonders-beauty-products-17075.
- Hoyt, ED (2013, January 16). 3 ways sugar is good for your skin. Retrieved October 14, 2019, from https://www.huffpost.com/entry/sugar-skincare_b_2133060.