What Can Be Used as Exfoliants In Soap?

  • By: Carl
  • Time to read: 7 min.

If you want to maintain smooth, soft skin then exfoliation is a must when it comes to your soap. When you exfoliate it helps remove dead skin, oil and dirt and can really help you level up your skin quality and appearance. The type of exfoliant you put in your soap usually depends on what the soap is designed for.

Let’s take a closer look at exfoliants, their purposes and what types of exfoliants can be used in soap.

What Can Be Used as Exfoliants In Soap?

Here are some common exfoliants that are used in soap making.

What Can Be Used As Exfoliants In Soap?

  • Oatmeal
  • Sugar
  • Coffee
  • Walnut Shells
  • Jojoba Beads
  • Sea Salt
  • Seeds
  • Sand

Now let’s take a closer look at these exfoliants.


Oats are used in many cosmetic preparations and in many forms, from masks, creams, shampoos, to soaps. The proteins contained in oats help protect the skin against external aggressions such as pollution.

Brown Sugar

Sugar is the star component of homemade exfoliants, and you can mix it with different ingredients such as olive oil. It helps to remove dead cells and not only from a physical point of view but also chemically, as it contains glycolic acid, which helps to fade wrinkles, wounds, and acne.


Coffee is another great exfoliant, as it contains properties to improve the appearance of the skin, favoring its firmness and vitality. It helps fight cellulite and orange peel skin and will also leave your skin smooth and energized.

Walnut Shells

Walnut shells are a great natural option as an exfoliant in soap, walnut shells also do a great job in contributing a natural brown color to your homemade soap. In addition, you can find walnut shells in a lot of soap in and around industrial work areas and auto repair shops.

Jojoba Beads

Jojoba beads are hardened wax balls made from jojoba oil. Jojoba beads are biodegradable and imitates the natural oils that your body produces to clean your skin and hair.

Sea Salt

Thanks to the amount of calcium in sea salt, it can become your best ally to clean clogged pores in the skin. Sea salt helps in the natural process of eliminating dead cells and impurities that are usually deposited on the surface of the epidermis, especially in those areas most exposed to environmental pollution.

Baking Soda

If you have oily skin, you should be aware that oils and creams will increase the oiliness of your skin. In that sense, it is recommended to use citrus elements to neutralize the bait. Exfoliating soap based on baking soda will help you to have less shiny and healthy skin.

Green Clay

Among the different types of clays, green clay is the most popular and the most appreciated in the world of beauty because it offers excellent properties for skincare. It has been used since ancient times and can deeply renew and regenerate the skin, making it look much healthier, more beautiful, and smoother after use.


These seeds are rich in fatty acids, vitamins, and minerals, and in addition to deep cleansing, they nourish the skin. You can find many seeds to create your own homemade exfoliating soap, for example, chia, quinoa, poppy, flaxseed, sunflower, almonds, etc.

What Exfoliants Are Best for The Face?

The best exfoliants to use for face soaps.

What Exfoliants Are Best For The Face?

  • Lemon Exfoliant
  • Brown Sugar Exfoliant
  • Oatmeal Exfoliant
  • Coffee Exfoliant

Now let’s take a more in-depth look.

1. Lemon Exfoliant

Lemon is one of the most beneficial natural ingredients for the skin and ideal for soap exfoliants. It is very effective in removing dead skin cells as well as minimizing skin blemishes. It is ideal for oily skin.

2. Brown Sugar Exfoliant

In addition to removing surface impurities from the skin, sugar also helps us deep cleanse and remove the remains of other products. In fact, it is proven to help remove impurities from the face, get a fresh look, and remove those blackheads that plague us so much.

3. Oatmeal and Honey Exfoliant

This is one of the most popular combinations to prepare soap exfoliants. Honey cleans profoundly and acts as an antimicrobial agent to fight acne, while oatmeal gently removes dead skin cells without irritating your skin. Besides, oatmeal has antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties that help treat some dermatological diseases such as atopic dermatitis and rashes.

4. Coffee and Rosehip Exfoliant

Coffee is an ideal active ingredient that detoxifies pores, de-inflames, and softens the skin, while rosehip oil profoundly moisturizes and diminishes irregularities, such as scars.

What Exfoliants Are Best for The Body?

These are some of the best exfoliants for body soap and body wash.

What Exfoliants Are Best For The Body?

  • White Sugar
  • Coffee
  • Sea Salt
  • Oatmeal

Let’s take a closer look at the best exfoliants for your body.

1. White Sugar Exfoliant

Its crystals are usually delicate, and it is ideal for exfoliating the body, hands, and feet. It is not recommended for the face or sensitive skin, as it can penetrate deep into the skin’s pores and cause irritation.

2. Coffee Exfoliant

If, in addition to exfoliating the skin, you want to combat cellulite in certain areas, coffee will be the best option. This is because caffeine promotes blood circulation, reduces cellulite, and helps the skin recover its firmness and smoothness.

3. Sea Salt Exfoliant

This is an ideal recipe if you have oily or stubborn skin or skin that is too old and dirty. The grains of salt help to leave the skin soft. This salt is rich in minerals and provides more benefits than regular salt.

4. Oatmeal Exfoliant

A cereal rich in soothing properties, antioxidants (beta-glucans), and cleansing properties is a fine powder ideal for cleansing sensitive skin.

What Are the Best Natural Exfoliants?

This is a lost of the best natural exfoliants that are in use today.

What Are The Best Natural Exfoliants?

  • Oatmeal
  • Green Clay
  • Aloe Vera
  • Coffee

Now let’s take a closer look at these natural exfoliants.

1. Oatmeal

Oatmeal is one of the best exfoliants for the skin. It is suitable for sensitive skin, and its properties soften and soothe irritations. You can buy it in powder or flakes.

2. Green Clay

It is indicated for people with sensitive skin because it is very gentle; it removes only the most superficial layer of the dermis and does not damage the tissue. On the other hand, it has purifying, regenerating, and healing effects, ideal for healing the skin when it suffers aggressions.

3. Aloe Vera

Aloe vera is a plant with remarkable properties for the skin; that’s why it is one of the most used products as soap exfoliants. Aloe vera stimulates the cell regeneration process through its vegetable particles, so your skin will look much better.

4. Coffee

Coffee is an excellent natural exfoliant that also provides energy to dull skin. It contains antioxidants that help slow down the signs of premature aging. Although it may not seem like it, the coffee bean is gentle and removes dead skin without a lot of scrubbing.

5. Honey

Raw honey works as an excellent antiseptic due to its anti-bacterial, anti-viral, and anti-fungal properties, which help decrease the incidence of skin infections, including acne. Honey helps the skin to better protect and repair itself by reducing skin inflammation.

6. Sugar

Sugar is a natural source of an alpha hydroxyl acid, called glycolic acid. Glycolic acid aids in the breakdown of the protein (a kind of glue) that keeps dead skin cells off the skin and encourages the development of new cells, smoothes the skin and helps whiten the skin.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is Lemon a good exfoliator?

Lemon is not only natural and easily accessible. Lemon makes a great exfoliant that can tighten open pores and even skin tone. It works great in combination with sugar which also works as a natural exfoliator that is useful for removing dead skill cells.

What happens if you stop exfoliating?

Not exfoliating is less than ideal if you are trying to get clear skin. When you stop exfoliating you will get a buildup of dead or dull skin cells that will leave your skin with clogged pores and a dry or patchy appearance. This can lead to bumps or an appearance of aging.

Can you over-exfoliate?

While exfoliating has its benefits sometimes you can do it too much. You can over exfoliate and aggravate the skin causing redness and irritation. You should not exfoliate more than once per day and you should use an exfoliant designed for that specific part of the body. You do not want to use a rough body exfoliant on your face for example.

How long does it take for over-exfoliated skin to heal?

Exfoliating is great for your skin but you can get too much of a good thing. Over-exfoliated skin can take anywhere from a few days to a few weeks to heal. The length of time required to heal depends on how much damage was done. You can avoid this problem by using the correct exfoliant for each part of your body and exfoliating no more than once per day.


In conclusion, exfoliating is great for your skin and you have several options available to exfoliate.

Make sure you are using the right exfoliant for each type of the body you want to exfoliate and do not use an exfoliant meant to be used on your body on your face.

In addition, remember too much of a good thing can be bad. It is possible to over exfoliate and if you do so it can take weeks for your skin to heal itself to the point that you can begin exfoliating again.

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