This week StyleNest’s Beauty Bird, Elle Tucker, puts scrubs to the test.
Back in the days when Boots only did three types of shampoo (Timotei, Head & Shoulders and Vosene), there was a firmly held belief that if it was gritty, it was good enough to rub all over your face. This was before the word exfoliation was commonplace – and before the term ‘microdermabrasion’ had even been invented. The result? Peach kernels and salt were chucked into facial scrubs willy nilly – and those with sensitive skin wondered why they felt slightly chafed.
Mama Mio founder Sian Sutherland explains to me that, “these types of scrub can make you feel well exfoliated but, in reality, the big shards of salt rake your skin. If you saw this under a microscope, you would never use chunky scrubs again!”. I don’t even need to see it, Sian – I am already sold on micro-ground exfoliators. Here are my favourites.
Let’s start with Mama Mio’s OMega Body Buff (£23). Yes, I know I’m talking about facial scrubs – but the beauty of this one is that you can use it dry on your body for some serious limb-softening, then wet in the shower on your face for a gentle polish. Smells heavenly and is super-gentle too.
Many of these new exfoliators are so creamy you wouldn’t know they are granular until you start massaging them in. That’s certainly the case with Beauty & Truth’s Illuminating Scrub. It’s a US brand and the price is $55, which I calculate to be £34, but you would need to pay shipping as well. Anyway, I love the pore-busting, refining qualities of this scrub, and the ‘boudoir’ packaging is fabulous.
Crystal Clear’s Crystal Polish (£32) is even creamier, packed as it is with essential oils and anti-ageing peptides – a great exfoliator for anyone thinking they are the wrong side of 30 to be scrubbing. Getting rid of those dullifying dead cells doesn’t just brighten – it speeds up cell turnover, which is all part of looking youthful.
Another bathroom cabinet staple for me is Elemis Skin Buff (£24.60), which is perfect when you feel the need for a deep cleanse. I love it after a day in the city or when I’ve been using suncream, it really seems to unclog.
Finally, Ole Henriksen. This is the full monty of exfoliation – an at home microdermabrasion treatment called the Micro Mini Peel Kit (£98). It’s something you might want to do every fortnight (and not more often than weekly) so the price isn’t as scary as you might initially think, and the almond scrub is deliciously marzipany. Glow-inducing in the extreme.