Friday, September 16

Funemployment | DIY: Coffee Exfoliant

One of the great things about funemployment is the new found free-time and ability to do those things you loved but never could fit in before. As of late, I have rediscovered the joy of loitering in a cafe like it's my day job. I have combined this joy with cover letter writing (the resume is now compelete :) and job searching (blech!) which, since I'm being productive, allows me to do this almost daily. 

Apart from the all-encompassing job hunt, I have been taking the opportunity to finally work on my portfolio site, new blog design (wink, wink!! SO excited) and making a batch of my favourite-ever body scrub.

I first stumbled upon a DIY coffee body scrub back in 2007 when after obsessively searching online and in-stores, could not find anything worth purchasing. At the time, I had recently put a birthday gift certificate to use and enjoyed my first, full body scrub and polish. While going through the treatment,  the aesthetician explained the benefits behind each product used and had explained that when caffeine, when applied to the surface of your skin, helps redistribute fat cells and decrease the formation of cellulite. The caffeine also acts as a vascular restrictor, shrinking blood vessels and helping to reduce varicose veins. Although I was half asleep in relaxation bliss, my mind took notes and I remembered: 

Caffeine = Cellulite/Varicose prevention
I googled as soon as I got home.

Since then, I have experimented with a few different recipes and measurements, finally discovering a balance that I love. All ingredients are items that you likely already have stocked in your kitchen, however I would caution that premium coffee is not meant for this - it is meant for drinking, enjoying and then remembering how good it was. I suppose you could use your premium (leftover) grounds once your coffee is drunk but if you're like me, and want something a little softer with better movement, this recipe is almost as easy.

  • 1cup coffee grounds
    • The coarser, the better. This is somewhat subjective. Coarser grounds will offer a more intense exfoliation, where as finer ones will be softer. I enjoy medium.
    • The cheaper, the better. I lucked out because Jack is a coffee snob and turned his nose up at this can of coffee, leaving it for me to rub all over my skin you do.
  • 3Tablespoons Oil: The oils job is to act as a moisturizer. It will be added to the coffee to create movement and soften your grains. I'm not a big fan of a slushy exfoliant so I stick to a modest amount of oil (also more cost-effective). If you do like a looser scrub, you can add up to 2/3cup, but do so incrementally to play it safe.
    • Massage Oil: The first time I made this exfoliant I used a no-scent massage oil. It was alright. I lost it in the move and then discovered that oils found in your kitchen are better! Not only are they more natural, they can offer more benefits to your skin than a massage oil can. 
    • Coconut Oil: I now use coconut oil. I was drawn to it because I thought coffee and coconut would complement each other, but it's health benefits are pretty impressive too! 
    • Grape seed Oil: I may try this oil next time. The health benefits are also incredibly impressive.
    • Olive Oil: This is a heavier oil, so it is best saved for the winter and other times your skin is prone to dryness. It's health benefits are also worth noting.
  • 1Tablespoon Sugar: The sugar helps to create movement between the coffee grounds, as well as acts as an exfoliant in itself and increases circulation. You can choose between brown, cane or white sugar. I chose white, however brown sugar offers a sweeter fragrance.
  • Fragrance: Honestly, this is really unnecessary. I had some Vanilla Body Shop perfume oil leftover from back in the day (oh to be 19...) so I added a few drops to sweeten the coffee scent.
    • Vanilla Extract: It will do the same thing, and may also thin the scrub a bit. I would keep it to half a teaspoon.
    • Cinnamon: Will enhance the coffee scent and add a little kick.


I use my scrub once a week. Anymore, and it's overkill. 

I use a body wash prior to the scrub so my skin is a little more slippery
allowing for ease of application, and better movement. 

I rinse after exfoliation, but will not re-wash with soap or body wash. 
If I used more oil in the scrub I would consider doing this but as is, I'm good.

I ALWAYS save shaving my legs until after I scrub and rinse. 
I have never had a smoother shave than when after I exfoliate with this scrub.

Make sure to rinse the tub out when you're done. 
This scrub is MESSY. 
It'll be a coffee ground bonanza when you are done. 
Don't be lazy. 
You will thank yourself, your roommate will thank you, 
your significant other will thank you.

While you're at it, make yourself a lip scrub. 
1Tablespoon of sugar + 1/2teaspoon of oil and you're good to go.

You might as well enter my giveaway, since you're pampering yourself and all.


  1. This sounds fantastic. I do a brown sugar + olive oil scrub on a regular basis (especially in the winter). I usually heat mine up in the microwave a little. Making it smell like coffee sounds even better. I will have to add 'cheap coffee' to my grocery list. I also like that I'm not scared to 'waste it' because it's so easy to make and the ingredients are pretty cheap.

  2. I am in love with the term "funemployment"! This is a great home beauty care post! Thanks for sharing.

  3. I'm not very handy in the whole "DIY" department. In fact I'm fairly convince I'd create some sort of poison even if I followed your directions perfectly, I am THAT talented.
    However I love the idea of this and plan on rubbing coffee grinds all over my legs asap!

  4. This is great! I love the smell of coffee, so I can't imagine a better morning scrubber. But here's my question: can I use grounds that I've already made coffee out of? I save the old grounds for composting and always have a bunch, but will they be too wet to use in the scrub?

  5. Thanks for sharing!! I can't wait to try it.

  6. I've never tried it, but I think you can. I would probably let them dry a little first though, before mixing everything else in.

  7. haha I can relate, this is one of my only real DIYs to date, but it is totally worth risking the emergency room!

    Also, your comment bombing - totally awesome.

  8. haha thanks! might as well enjoy free time for what it is :)

  9. oooo the brown sugar scrub sounds awesome, I'll have to look into it! and you're right, the fact that it's so cheap really makes you feel better about taking a chance!

  10. Oooo I love these types of DIY! I'd love to try it, but believe it or not - I'm allergic to coconuts! haha Its a really bizarre allergy, but I break out in a bad rash. Ah well, guess this exfoliant wasn't meant to be :P

  11. OH no! You can still try it though... just use Grape seed oil instead!


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