We've tried bubble masks, silicone sponges and cleansing gloves. Now women are Pinteresting and Instagramming photos of a strange, brown paste... Welcome to the world of coffee scrubs, the latest natural, skin-loving treatment. A long-time favourite with Asian women, these scrubs blend coffee grounds with coconut or jojoba oil and are used for their regenerating, cellulite-zapping properties.
Caffeine is an alcoloid member of the methylxanthine family and is found in numerous plants - coffee (obviously), tea, yerbe mate, cola nuts, guarana and, to a lesser extent, cocoa. We know it stimulates our central nervous and cardio-vascular systems, but it also works wonders on skin. Coffee itself has antioxidant properties that protect skin from UV rays and slow down ageing. It firms skin and diminishes cellulite thanks to its lipolytic action. It also soothes red patches on sensitive skin, decongests the eye contour, hydrates and exfoliates.
Waste of time or our new beauty BFF? Coffee scrubs do exfoliate skin if they're made with grounds or crushed grains. They're moisturising when blended with coconut oil. But that's all. For the firming, anti-cellulite part, coffee in body scrub form is not the way forward, simply because caffeine can't cross the skin barrier to reach fat cells. Plus body scrubs are immediately washed off. Active ingredients need to reach our blood vessels and there are better scrubs on the market if you want to banish orange peel skin.
Easier than a frothy cappuccino! Mix a glass of coffee grounds with 3 teaspoons of coconut oil and 3 teaspoons of coarse salt. Hop in the shower and apply the scrub, paying attention to stubborn zones - heels, knees, elbows etc. Leave for a few minutes and then rinse it off. For a face scrub, don't add the salt, as it's too harsh. Gently massage on the scrub using small, circular movements. Rince off with warm water and moisturise. Feeling the caffeine kick?
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