Salt vs Sugar: Is your exfoliator scrubbing you up the wrong way?

Posted by Lipglossiping On June - 24 - 2013

When it comes down to it, most body scrubs are pretty low-tech.  A DIY recipe generally involves little more than a simple pairing of an abrasive ingredient with a moisturising agent, et voila!  Body scrub.

It’s all about the exfoliation.

That unmistakable pleasure/pain(!) of scrubbing your skin and physically sloughing off the dead skin cells that clog the surface layer whilst removing grease and other impurities.  Sounds good doesn’t it?  And let’s not forget some of the other benefits of exfoliation which include prepping your skin to welcome moisturiser, self-tan, and masks whilst an increased blood circulation brings a healthy glow to some oft’ neglected areas.

While there are truly limitless moisturising agents available in which to suspend those wonderful exfoliating particles… it’s the hard-working scrubby bits that I’m talking about today.  In particular, the two most commonly found abrasives.

Salt and Sugar.

Salt vs Sugar: Is your exfoliator scrubbing you up the wrong way?

Salt vs. Sugar

Perhaps you’ve never even considered why you might choose one ingredient over the other.  What are the differences between them and why should you even care?

Read on, and I’ll tell you all you need to know for the next time you’re thinking of making a purchase…

Salt vs Sugar

The major difference between the two is simple; scrubbiness.

Salt is more abrasive and dissolves more slowly than sugar when it comes into contact with water.  Salt is usually the preffered ingredient in scrubs marketed toward a male consumer as it’s presumed that our menfolk prefer a more vigourous scrub!  And because of its slow-dissolving nature, it’s also the scrub ingredient of choice in many spas and other professional places that offer treatments involving manual exfoliation.

Some salts – such as Himalayan and Dead Sea Salt – are also revered for their “healing” properties thanks to a particularly high mineral content.  These are generally considered to have greater therapeutic properties than their sugar counterparts and as a result can be more expensive to incorporate into a finished product.

Salt scrubs should never be used on the face, or indeed any delicate part of the body.  However, feel free to go crazy with them on calloused feet and enjoy stepping out in sandals again with confidence.

Salt vs Sugar: Is your exfoliator scrubbing you up the wrong way?

Four lovely sugar and salt-based body scrubs to get your skin glowing!

SALT

Elemis Sp@ Home Frangipani Monoi Salt Glow* (£36.50, timetospa.co.uk)

Soap & Glory Flake Away (£7.50, boots.com)

SUGAR

Organic Surge Million Dollar Brown Sugar Body Polish* (£32 £8 on sale!, organicsurge.com)

Marshmallow Blends Lemon Sherbet Sugar Scrub Cubes* (£6, marshamallowblends.co.uk)

Sugar vs Salt

If like me, you’re a more sensitive soul… sugar scrubs will still give you a great manual exfoliation, sloughing away rough skin and leaving behind a smooth surface that begs to be stroked!  Not only is sugar less abrasive than its salty counterpart but it also reacts more kindly to any shaving cuts you may have accrued on your legs, salt stings!

You may also find that during application, sugar scrubs are a little easier to tame.  Salt-based scrubs tend to have less “stick” to the skin… particularly if the salt to base ratio is high.  Sugar, by its very nature, is a lot “stickier” and easier to work into the skin for some hardcore body-pampering.

When all is said and done, the difference between salt and sugar mostly comes down to personal choice and how sensitive your skin is to begin with.  Me?  I adore the therapeutic properties of a good old-fashioned bath salt but I prefer my scrubs to be a little sweeter!

Do you have a preference between sugar or salt-based crubs?

* press sample


Lemony treats from Marshmallow Blends

Posted by Lipglossiping On June - 15 - 2013

There’s something quite exciting about purchasing from indie retailers, when a product isn’t mass-produced and picked from the supermarket shelves you can feel a greater connection with it somehow.

The owner of Marshmallow Blends, Nicoletta is also a beauty blogger… so if anyone knows what we want for our bathtime treats, she’d be pretty high up the list!

A few weeks ago, she sent me a few bits* from her store and today, I’m sharing my two favourites with you.  One in particular, is a knockout and will be a repurchase.  I’ll even let her hold me to that!

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First up is Marshmallow Blend’s Lemon Biscotti Cupcake Soap (£4.50) which looks as much like a traditional bar of soap as I do, Kate Moss.  In it’s ridiculously cute, not-entirely-practical (but who cares) form of a cupcake, it would appeal to most everyone with a sweet tooth.  My daughter adores it and has claimed it as her own.  It has a slight dusting of glitter on-top which I thought might be a bit of a pain in the backside but thankfully disperses after the first use.

The lather is rich and the scent, divine.  It’s not a lively, lemony aroma but a warmed up, fresh from the oven scent with more than a passing nod to some rather-cakey almond smells, not unlike a quitened frangipane!

You can see that the packaging is perfect for gifting and I don’t know a single girl who wouldn’t consider this a lovely gift to receive.  Would be utterly perfect for end-of-year teacher’s presents actually.

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The other product that I wanted to talk about today are the contents of this tin.  I’m crazy about it, let me tell you why…

I’m a bit funny about scrubs, a little bit squeamish if you will…  I don’t very much like the sensation of putting my hand into a pot of sugary/salty goo and scooping out a hand-full.  It’s a messy business as you try to juggle the contents of your palm under the shower as the “goo” slips between your fingers and down the plughole before you’ve even gotten it near your body.  Then you’re left digging out granules from under your nails while the water runs cold.  You get the picture.

Marshmallow Blend’s Lemon Sherbet Sugar Scrub Cubes (£6) is one of the best lemon-scented body-care products I’ve ever encountered.  If you like The Body Shop’s lemon range (which is also a nice interpretation of the scent), I implore you to try these.  As a body scrub, they’re pretty much perfect.  They hold their shape when you run a cube over your limbs, softening under the warmth of your touch without giving up completely!  The scent is super-uplifting and zingy without being artificial, it’s a true “happy” scent that goes a very long way to improving your mood on a Monday morning.  I would love to see Marshmallow Blends offer these cubes in more scents.

On the subject of scents, most of the “flavours” available on the website lean towards the gourmand… it would be good to see a little more diversity, less cream more earthiness please!

I expected Nicoletta’s creations to be nice-enough but I’m pleasantly surprised by just how good and (for want of a better word), robust these offerings are.

* press sample

Brenda Anvari Persian Rose Body Scrub

Posted by Lipglossiping On March - 15 - 2012

Late last year, I talked about a Brenda Anvari candle that I’d been burning, it was full of spice and citrus and all those wonderful Christmassy things that we get heartily sick of by January.  Well, I’m back with another product from her Persian Rose range of scented bodycare products.

Last weekend, I scraped the last few grains from the jar of Persian Rose Body Scrub* and howled a gentle “nooooooooooo” into the air as I replaced the lid.  You see, it’s a really freakin’ beautiful scent.

The rose isn’t the most complex of fragrances, I think of it as pretty universal – it’s kinda safe, being both inoffensive and rather lovely.  Brenda has taken the classic rose and whipped it into a headier form.  Persian Rose takes on a dirtier, naughtier vibe with altogether more earthy qualities.

What I’m saying is, there are two types of people in this world.  Those who like the thought of walking in to find a scattering of rose petals on their bed, and those who like the thought of being physically whipped with a rose, thorns and all.  I’ve always hated the thought of waking up with a rose petal stuck up my nose.  You know?

I also like a good scrub.  And this is a good scrub.  It’s got just the right amount of grrrr going on, it rasps a little at the skin and feels like it’s working some proper skin-smoothing magic.  But if all that sounds a little too intense for you wimps, don’t worry because the salt granules sit in a base of beautifully-scented Persian Rose-infused oil that ultimately leaves your skin feeling nourished and kissably-smooth.

I haven’t mentioned the body moisturiser* or the bath oil*, because… well… they’re ok.  There’s nothing about them that makes me not want to recommend them, they make great flankers for layering the scent but there’s nothing that screams “buy me above everything else available on the market” either.  It’s a tough world out there.

If the thought of Persian Rose doesn’t float your boat, other scents available from the Brenda Anvari bodycare range include: Ylang Ylang, Sandalwood & Black Pepper, Lime, Mandarin & Grapefruit, Orange Blossom, and Pomegranate, Raspberry  & Patchouli.  Prices start from £8.95 and you can shop online.

What bath-time scents are you loving at the moment?

* press sample

Haus of Gloi Parkin & Aduwa (amongst others!)

Posted by Lipglossiping On November - 24 - 2010

My second (or is it third – who’s counting?) Haus of Gloi order arrived a couple of weeks ago and included the limited edition scent Parkin and Aduwa from the permanent line.

I think by now, it’s confirmed that I’m a lover of the gourmand, foodie smells – particularly from this brand.  They simply do them so well.

I picked up a full size Parkin Pumpkin Butter, a mini size Parkin Bubbling Scrub, a full size Aduwa Bubbling Scrub and mini sized Saft Ernte & Pumpkin Queen Pumpkin Butters.  I basically scraped up the last of the Halloween offerings with this order.  I also made a separate order that contained just the Pumpkin Queen Perfume Oil but I seem to have mislaid it 🙁

Anyway… back to this order…

I’ve already talked about Pumpkin Queen and I won’t spend long on Saft Ernte (seeing as it’s barely available on site anymore) but suffice to say that if you’re a fan of Pumpkin Queen, you’ll like Saft Ernte too…. it’s a slightly peachier, sweeter version of Pumpkin Queen.  It’s a teeny bit *too* sweet for me… but not by much.

Parkin is still extremely gourmand… albeit darker.  In the jar, it’s all about the gingerbread… but once on the skin, it has a bitterness that comes from the black treacle.  The scent doesn’t last quite as long on me as Pumpkin Queen does but the formula is just as rich, moisturising and moreish.

Aduwa is part of the permanent line; described as: Sweet, hot, creamed ginger over a thick benzoin, creamy coconut milk.

I’ve only smelt this in the jar as I’m still finishing up my mini size Samhain scrub… but first impressions tell me that Aduwa smells good enough to eat!  The coconut is strong and true… none of this synthetic sun tan lotion coconut scent.  It’s like sticking your snout in a bag of dessicated coconut.

The next thing to come through is the creaminess… I was expecting a hit of ginger but it’s lacking a little.  This is pure coconut mixed through creamy hot milk.  Delightful.

My addiction to all things Haus of Gloi is well and truly compounded.  My Yule Tide order came through a couple of days ago… but I’m not even allowing myself a sniff until I’ve made some head way into these items.  I’m sure that won’t be too hard a task for me to manage!

Have you ordered anything from Haus of Gloi yet?

Dirty Works exclusive to Sainsbury’s

Posted by Lipglossiping On May - 5 - 2010

Put down the broccoli and head for the Beauty Aisle ‘cos there’s a new brand in town!

Dirty Works is exclusive to Sainsbury’s and incorporates a range of body scrubs, body butters and bath products to leave you feeling pampered but not penniless!

The comparison to Soap & Glory has to be made though right?  Is this an even more budget-friendly option?

I was sent a little trio of goodies called “Get Set Go” Mini Luxuries which includes:

Bare Necessity Body Lotion
Buff Your Stuff Body Scrub
All of a Lather Body Wash

I’m a little over the whole kitsch packaging thing now that it’s been done to death… but I can see it still appealing to many and this set in particular would make a great little gift set for a bathing belle.

Each product in the set is 100ml, so considering it’s mini… is pretty darn generous!  The products are all quite highly-scented… I smell cocoa butters, fruity scents and vanilla.

They’re not the most luxurious products I’ve used, but they do what they say on the tin and they do it well.

Most products seem to be priced around the £5 mark, check them out next time you’re doing the weekly shop!

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