Exfoliating may give you radiant, glowing skin, but with the wrong scrub it certainly won’t beautify the environment. According to an article in the Los Angeles Times, microbeads (you know- the cute little balls inside your favorite skin exfoliate that scrub the dead skin cells off your face) are too small to be removed from the water after they’ve gone down the drain, even with water treatment. These microbeads are not biodegradable and find their way into bodies of water, and end up being ingested by fish and other animals. That means microbeads we use to remove dead skin could find their way back on our plates at dinner (yuck).
According to a Gristmill’s article, New York and California are moving to ban products containing microbeads because of their harmful effects on the environment. Before you freak out and stock up on your favorite scrub, look into alternatives to exfoliates that don’t contain polyethylene or polypropylene (the ingredients that make up a microbead); they’re great for your skin and kind to the environment. Check out some of these all-natural scrubs!
SW Basics’ Body Scrub. This scrub may be a little pricier than your average exfoliate, but it’s well worth the price. This body scrub’s ingredients include organic sugar, extra-virgin coconut oil, and shredded coconut- not a microbead in sight. Plus, SW Basic’s Body Scrub isn’t tested on animals and doesn’t contain biphenyl-A (a chemical that has been linked to cancer, diabetes, and other medical conditions). Check out SW Basics’ Body Scub!
St. Ives Fresh Skin Apricot Scrub. St. Ives is one of the most popular skin care brands and their Fresh Skin Apricot Scrub is certainly a customer favorite. It’s oil-free and made of 100% natural exfoliates, including apricot (duh), corn kernel meal, and walnuts. The sweet smelling scrub gently washes away dead skin cells on your face, leaving your skin soft and glowing. Check out St. Ives Fresh Skin Apricot Scrub here!
EO Everyone Face’s Exfoliate. If you’re a big fan of tropical fruit blends and smells, this is the all-natural exfoliate for you. This gentle cleanser includes pineapple and papaya fruit enzymes infused with mango butter and pure essential oils. It not only exfoliates, but it also keeps the skin smooth and moisturized. Check out EO Everyone Face’s Exfoliate here!
Queen Helen’s Oatmeal N’ Honey Natural Face Scrub. Oatmeal isn’t just good for breakfast; oatmeal is also great for your skin. The oatmeal, paired with the honey, moisturizes and nourishes your skin, while simultaneously exfoliating it. No more are the days of harsh, irritating scrubs that leave your face red and raw. And it smells like a warm, cozy morning. You can’t top a smell like that. Check out Queen Helen’s Oatmeal N’ Honey Natural Face Scrub here!
Freeman’s Pomegranate Sugar Body Scrub. You don’t have to limit the exfoliation to your face; grab a loofah and pour some of this body scrub on it in the shower. This sugary smelling scrub will leave your entire body fresh, glowing, and sweet smelling after your shower. Freeman’s Pomegranate Sugar Body Scrub is also extremely inexpensive, so stalking up on it won’t mean emptying your wallet. Check out Freeman’s Pomegranate Sugar Body Scrub here!
Burt’s Bees Citrus Facial Scrub. You know we can’t do an all-natural product round up with including Burt’s Bees. Their scrub doesn’t just exfoliate; it cleans, scrubs, and moisturizes. The grapefruit seed extract and sweet orange oil washes away dirt, make up, and any other buildup on your face. Ground almonds (one of the best natural skin care ingredients), pecans, and oats exfoliate and wash away dead skin cells. Finally, sweet almond oil and glycerin moisturize your skin, leaving it soft and smooth. Check out Burt’s Bees Citrus Facial Scrub here!
Make your own scrub! Making your own scrub is an extremely inexpensive and all-natural option! For all you DIY-types, you can grab products you’d probably find in your kitchen, such as ground coffee or sugar, and mix and match them up to make your own personal exfoliate. Check out some simple and inexpensive DIY scrub ideas!
If you’re having trouble finding out whether your favorite scrub or face wash contains microbeads, check out this cool app! All you have to do is look up the name of your face wash and the app will tell you whether it contains microbeads. This way, you can scrub away, guilt-free!
[Lead image via Paul Hakimata Photography/Shutterstock]