Image courtesy of Wembe
Along with muttering and cursing about the trash in my lawn after the snow melts, my other key spring activity involves scrubbing away and sloughing off all that flaky dry skin I've built up over the winter months, aka EXFOLIATION. Minnesota is a cold clime and our indoor heating punishes the skin.
When it comes to body scrubs, I am insanely picky and am constantly on a quest for a good product that removes dead skin but doesn't add too much oil because a) much like the ocean, I don't need extra oil ANYWHERE b) hello, bath-tub ring.
I recently bought a body scrub made by that hippie direct-selling make-up company Arbonne - don't ask - and it was so oily, it basically made my shower a slippery hazardous zone in need of one of those LifeAlert 911 ripcords that my grandmother used to have.
I also like a product that lasts for more than a week, so this counts out Lush's You Snap The Whip. Though it smells divine and works wonders, it tends to melt after a few washes, and then I'm out $13.
Make-Up Alley recommended using plain old white sugar as an exfoliator, which shocked me in its cheapness and simplicity. But then I had to go and store it in a glass container, which shattered in my shower (while I was using it, natch) and that sorta took the wind outta my sails.
However, I think I have found an exfoliator that is just perfect for my needs (not too costly, not oily, lasts long). Made by Wembe, a company which makes soap and exfoliating soaps from ingredients found in the Amazonian forest, these are cube-shaped soaps that exfoliate...or are they exfoliators that cleanse? Who knows? Who cares?
Here are my thoughts on the three soaps I've tried from their line:
1) Avocado Cleansing Blend: a soft, moisturizing and soothing soap, with a subtle scent. So many "natural" products are crammed with so many essential oils, the fragrance is like a boot to the face. This one is a good introductory exfoliator, as it's gentle, though not overly coarse - good for touch-ups or feet.
2) Mango Cleansing Blend: this soap is lovely! Like the Avocado Cleansing Blend, the Mango's scent is also subtle and lovely. Like the others, it comes in a pleasing cube, which perfectly fits my daughter's hand.
3) Yerba Mate Exfoliating Blend: this is the best exfoliating product I've ever used. It's not oily and doesn't have ingredients that sting and irritate. It's basically a body scrub with a little soap thrown in - no need for a scrubbing mitt, no plastic jar to toss when finished. Yerba Mate is the Argentinian answer to coffee - a type of energizing tea sipped through a special straw. I don't know if it energizes me or not, but I don't really care. It scrubs everything from my triceps to my toes and I will be ordering it every spring.
Do you have a favorite body scrub or exfoliator? Share your recipes and recommendations!