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Have you heard of cleansing grains? Maybe you have seen your favorite organic skin care company release their own cleansing grains product, and you have wondered what they are.
Cleansing grains have been around a long time, but have been recently rising in popularity. They are an excellent alternative to plastic microbeads that pollute waterways and harm the environment.
In this guide to cleansing grains, you will learn:
- What cleansing grains are and the ingredients they contain
- Why cleansing grains are beneficial to your skin
- How to use cleansing grains
What are Cleansing Grains?
Cleansing grains are a powdered face wash/gentle exfoliator made with natural ingredients such as oats, clay powder, herbs, nuts, and seeds. When combined with water or another liquid, the grains turn into a gritty paste that serves as a gentle face scrub.
Cleansing grains are a shelf-stable product. Because they do not contain water, they do not need preservatives, and they can stay fresh for a long time.
What is the difference between cleansing grains and scrubs?
Cleansing grains are similar to scrubs in that they offer exfoliation, the difference is, cleansing grains are gentle enough to be used daily.
Why Use Cleansing Grains?
Cleansing grains offer gentle daily exfoliation. Every day we shed millions of skin cells. Many of these dead skin cells sit on the surface of our skin and can clog pores and make our skin look dull.
Daily exfoliation helps remove these dead skin cells, helping to keep pores clear and make our skin look glowing and radiant.
Ingredients in Cleansing Grains
Grain Powders – Oats, rice, quinoa, millet, and wheat germ are perfect examples. Oats contain compounds that ease inflammation,
Clay – Clay is full of minerals that are good for the skin. Clay also sucks up oil and dirt, helping to cleanse the skin. There are various types of clays, and they are useful for different skin types. Read our Guide to Cosmetic Clays to learn more.
Dried Fruit/Vegetable Powders – Freeze dried fruits and vegetables can be ground into a powder and added to a cleansing grain recipe for added vitamin, mineral, and antioxidant power.
Seaweed Powders – An excellent source of trace minerals. Seaweed also offers moisturizing and detoxifying properties.
Nuts/Seeds – Chock full of omega fatty acids that nourish and repair the skin.
Powdered Milk – Milk is a source of lactic acid, a gentle chemical exfoliate that helps digest dead skin cells. Milk leaves the skin feeling soft and smooth.
Herbs – Various plant powders can be added to cleansing grains for their plethora of properties. Some plants act as astringents, others as anti-inflammatories. There are soothing and calming plants such as chamomile and anti-bacterial plants such as lavender.
Activated Charcoal – a detoxifying and cleansing powder that pulls impurities from the skin.
Liquids You can Add to Your Cleansing Grains
Water – the most simple and readily available liquid.
Plant Hydrosols – offer a more robust treatment. Choose a hydrosol that matches your skin type.
Yogurt – contains lactic acid for mild chemical exfoliation.
Herbal Tea – Green tea makes an excellent choice at it is super high in antioxidants.
Juice – Lemon juice will help brighten the skin and fade hyperpigmentation.
Aloe Vera Juice or Gel – Skin soothing and healing.
Your Cleanser – Mix a little cleansing grains into your regular cleanser for added exfoliation.
How to Use Cleansing Grains
The following steps can be used for any cleansing grains you make yourself or purchase from your favorite skincare brand.
- Take 1/2 – 1 tsp. of cleansing grains into the palm of your hand or a small bowl.
- Add some of your liquid components and mix together.
- Apply the muddy mixture to your face, and gently scrub in a circular motion with your fingertips.
- Rinse with warm water and follow with your toner and moisturizer.
Some points to remember:
Store your cleansing grains away from moisture – and avoid getting liquid into your container. You want your cleansing grains to last and not spoil. Water and humidity will lead to mold growth. Keep your cleansing grains in the cupboard, not in your shower.
Less is more – you don’t need more than a teaspoon of cleansing grains to do your whole face.
They can be messy – Your sink, tub, or shower may be left spotted with grains. They are easy enough to clean up and are usually safe to wash down the drain.
Cleansing Grains are a 3-in-1 Product
You can use cleansing grains as a cleanser, mask, or scrub.
- Make your mixture more on the watery side, or add the cleansing grains to your favorite daily cleanser and wash away dirt, oil, and debris.
- If you mix your cleansing grains with less liquid, or you use a thicker liquid such as yogurt or honey, you can apply and leave on your face as a mask.
- Add less liquid to your cleansing grains, so the mixture stays thick and use as a scrub on any part of your body.
I hope that this guide to cleansing grains has been helpful for you! Stay tuned for DIY cleansing grain recipes and an article highlighting our favorite ready-made cleansing grains.
What is your favorite way to use cleansing grains? Do you have a favorite brand or recipe you would like to share? Please let us know in the comments below.