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Scrubs without plastic beads

Go green by using homemade facial scrubs or choosing products that do not contain tiny plastic balls that harm marine life

Can I make my own face scrub?

Yes, you can. When you make your own face scrub, you know the ingredients that are going onto your face.

Exfoliating regularly helps to clear dead skin cells, unclog pores and increase blood circulation in the skin. But some facial scrubs on the shelves contain microbeads, tiny balls of plastic which can kill marine life when they wash down the drain and end up in rivers, seas and oceans.

Countries such as the United States and the United Kingdom have already announced plans from next year to ban the production of personal care products and cosmetics containing plastic microbeads.

A report by The Straits Times last month said that the authorities here are studying the environmental threat of microbeads and ways to prevent them from entering surrounding waters.

To ensure that the skincare products you are using do not end up contributing to the enormous amount of plastics already floating in the oceans, you can make your own natural face scrubs.

Here are two recipes:

For a moisturising scrub: Milk and honey scrub

•1 tsp milk (you can use cream for dryer skin)

•1 tsp honey

•1 Tbsp ground almonds

Mix the ingredients. Apply to the face in circular motions for a couple of minutes and rinse off well.


For a refreshing exfoliator: Sugar and lavender scrub

•2 Tbsp sugar (you can use brown, organic or white)

•1 tsp coconut oil

•2 drops of lavender essential oil

Mix the ingredients. Make sure all the sugar crystals are completely and evenly coated. Apply to the skin in circular motions for a couple of minutes and rinse off well.


But if you cannot spare the time to make your own facial scrub, here are a few products without any microbeads you can buy.

1. Divine Scrub, $44, from Caudalie, available at Sephora

This softening scrub does not contain parabens or sulfates. The gentle brown sugar exfoliator also contains natural plant oils.


2. Never A Dull Moment, $56, from Origins counters

This is a polishing scrub with apricot and mango seeds, which the label says will help to brighten and increase the skin's natural glow.


3. Revive Natural Skin Refiner, $98, from Porcelain counters

The non-abrasive exfoliator contains not beads but natural enzymes, which the label says will dissolve dead skin cells and stimulate cell renewal.


4. Ocean Salt, $29 for 120g, $55 for 250g, from Lush stores

This scrub can be used on the face and body, and contains a combination of coarse and fine sea salt. It also has lime and vodka, which the label says help to cleanse the skin.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on November 10, 2016, with the headline 'Scrubs without plastic beads'. Print Edition | Subscribe