How to Make a Coffee Scrub

overhead view of ingredients in glass bowls: brown sugar, coffee grounds, and coconut oil

Treehugger / Allison Berler

Overview
  • Working Time: 5 - 10 minutes
  • Total Time: 15 - 20 minutes
  • Yield: 1 cup
  • Skill Level: Beginner
  • Estimated Cost: $5.00

A coffee scrub is one of the easiest skin treatments you can make at home—though it feels completely decadent (and smells that way, too). You'll only need a few ingredients, and you'll be on your way to enjoying a spa-like shower or bath experience.

Coffee is great for your skin because it's full of antioxidants and it's a wonderful gentle exfoliator—gritty enough to help you get rid of dead skin, but not so harsh that it will irritate most people's dermis. You can even make your scrub more or less gritty by choosing a specific grind. A finer grind, like that used for espresso drinks, will be softer on skin, where a coarser grind will be more scrubby.

Making your own coffee body scrub will not only cost less than buying it, but it will also save packaging, since you can put it in whatever container you have already in your home. And anything you make at home rather than buying online or from a store means that you have reduced the fossil fuels needed to transport it. And unlike some coffee scrubs that might contain preservatives or other extra ingredients to keep them shelf-stable, your DIY coffee scrub only contains what you put in it.

What Kind of Coffee Should I Use for a Coffee Scrub?

coffee grounds-coconut oil body scrub in glass jar with scattered coffee beans

Treehugger / Allison Berler

You can really use whatever you'd like to make your coffee scrub, from used grounds from your home coffee maker to freshly ground coffee.

One consideration is that you might want to use organic coffee grounds. Since your skin is able to absorb a number of different toxic chemicals, you should consider what you put on your skin as well as what you eat.

What You'll Need

  • Heat-proof bowl
  • Small pot
  • Large spoon
  • Wide-mouthed jar or container with lid

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup ground coffee
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup coconut oil
  • 1 tsp real vanilla extract

Instructions

Making a coffee scrub is easy and you can use it right away. If you want more or less scrub, simply double or half the amount of each ingredient.

You can store your coffee scrub in almost any container, but one that's wide at the top—so it's easy to access the scrub—will make it easier to enjoy when you are mid-shower. Do think, however, about whether it's safe for you to keep glass or ceramics in your bathroom, or if plastic is better in case of breakage.

  1. Gather Ingredients

    glass bowls filled with brown sugar, coffee grounds, and melted coconut oil

    Treehugger / Allison Berler

    First, measure out your ingredients and have them all ready to go in the quantities you need them.

  2. Warm Coconut Oil

    large glass bowl filled with melted coconut oil next to small glass bowl with solid coconut oil

    Treehugger / Allison Berler

    Your coconut oil will most likely be in a solid state (it will be at temperatures below 78 degrees), and you'll want it to be liquid to mix in your ingredients. You don't need to get your oil hot or cook it, it just needs to be warmed to above 80 degrees.

    The easiest way to do this is to microwave it on high for 15 seconds, or use a heat-proof bowl and put it in a larger pot with about an inch of water at the bottom. Turn the heat on low, and when the water heats up, the heat will transfer through the heat-proof bowl and melt the coconut oil.

    Of course, if your coconut oil is already in a liquid or mostly liquid state, you can skip this step.

  3. Mix Ingredients

    hands use gold spoon to stir coffee grounds and coconut oil together in glass bowl with nearby brown sugar

    Treehugger / Allison Berler

    Once your coconut oil is melted, add vanilla and coffee grounds and mix well with a spoon.

    You should have your storage container ready for the next step.

  4. Pour Into Container

    hands use golden spoon to pour coffee-coconut oil mixture into glass container

    Treehugger / Allison Berler

    Pour the oil and coffee mixture into the container you are going to store your scrub in, and let it cool a bit.

  5. Add Brown Sugar

    Golden spoon scoops out brown sugar from glass bowl and adds to coffee-coconut oil mixture

    Treehugger / Allison Berler

    Once cooled, add the brown sugar and gently combine it with the oil mixture in the storage container. You want to keep the sugar from melting so you get a little exfoliation action from the sugar, too.

  6. Use Your Scrub

    hands rub homemade coffee grounds-coconut oil on outstretched forearm

    Treehugger / Allison Berler

    As long as it's not hot, your coffee scrub is ready to use. You can scoop it out with your fingers, or use a little scoop or spoon.

    Simply rub it in concentric circles in the places you want to scrub, then rinse off with water. Your skin will feel soft and moisturized from the coconut oil. No need to wash the coconut oil off, it's great for skin, just pat dry.

  7. Store Smart

    overhead view of homemade coffee scrub in glass jar with lid with scattered coffee grounds

    Treehugger / Allison Berler

    Be sure to keep the container covered wherever you store it so it doesn't get water in it. It will keep for a couple months, but it won't last indefinitely, so use it and enjoy it regularly.

View Article Sources
  1. Delgado-Arias, Stefany, et al. "Evaluation of the Antioxidant and Physical Properties of an Exfoliating Cream Made from Coffee Grounds." Journal of Food Process Engineering, vol. 43, no. 5, 2020., doi:10.1111/jfpe.13067