Home made cosmetics – Part 2: coffee scrub and honey body wash

In my last blog post I shared a few of my trusty home made (edible!) cosmetics recipes that I use on a daily basis. And I couldn’t wait to share a couple more!

Making your own skin care products is so easy, and what’s best is that you know exactly what goes on your skin and into your body.  And why wouldn’t we reduce our exposure to harmful chemicals, when making your own skincare only takes a few minutes and some simple ingredients from the pantry?

Word of warning: Once you try making this delicious lemony coconutty coffee scrub and fragrant honey body wash, you will never look back…



Honestly, this scrub is heavenly. Especially if you’re a coffee lover like me.

It has got some caffeine in it of course, and that is why I use it in my morning shower. This lemony coffee concoction combined with the hot steam of the shower is almost good as a fresh cup of strong flat white from my favourite café! Or maybe even better…

The scrub is best used on the body, but I do use it on my face aswell. Just make you apply it GENTLY if using on your face, as coffee grinds can be too abrasive otherwise on the delicate skin.

Here it is, the most delicious scrub that leaves your skin super smooth! You will not need to moisturise afterwards. Try it, you’ll see what I mean.

Ps. Just keep in mind that my recipes are always more about the right “feel” than exact measurements… give it a go and have fun!


Mix together 1 tablespoon of liquid honey, couple of tablespoons of coconut oil (melted) and 3-5 drops of lemon essential oil. (You could also use freshly squeezed lemon and some of the rind grated finely but essential oil gives a stronger zing.) Stir to combine. Add approx. ½ cup very finely ground coffee until you have a paste/scrub like consistency. If the paste is too runny, just add more coffee grinds. You can also go 50/50 in coffee and fine sugar if you want. If it’s too dry, add more oil. It is ok to use recycled coffee grinds, just make sure they are dry’ish. Store the scrub in a glass jar. You can roll or pinch the “dough” into little portion size nuggets for easy use.

The scrub keeps well in room temperature. I just make a small portion at a time and keep the jar in the shower. But if you are only planning to use the scrub once every blue moon, you can pop in the fridge. This way the mixture can be stored for months but it’s so yummy that you’ll probably use it much sooner than that!



I call this body wash but you can also use it as a handwash. There’s no real reason to use antibacterial soaps for our hands or body. Commercial body washes and soaps contain harsh chemicals and alcohol and tend to dry and irritate our skin as well kill the good bacteria, which is not good news for our immune system.

So, let’s make our own!

This recipe was originally from Wellness Mama’s blog. I’ve been making it for a long time varying the essential oil combinations to keep it interesting and fun. I usually use peppermint, sage, thyme or eucalyptus essential oils in the body wash for their deodorising properties.  Then I add a few more flavours, like lemongrass, lemon or orange essential oils for some uplifting aromas! You can choose whatever oils you like and get all creative in your kitchen lab!


I reuse an old soap / body wash bottle with a pump. Just make sure you’ve washed it well. I pour 2-3 tbsp Dr. Bronner’s* liquid castile soap into the bottle along with 1-2 tbsp liquid honey, 2 tbsp olive oil and about 10 drops (or more if like) of essential oils. Then I fill the rest of the bottle with water (about  1 – 1.5 cups), mixing slowly and gently, without foaming the soap too much. And that’s all there is to it, easy-peasy.

The oils can separate over time and rise to the top of the bottle, but a bit of a shake before using is all you need to mix it back up. If you have one of those empty bottles from a “foaming hand soap”, by all means refill it with your new home made soap mixture for a bubbly body/hand wash.

*Dr, Bronner’s soap is  the gentlest, most eco-friendly soap and can be bought from most health food shops. It can be used for pretty much anything, from shampoo, hand and body wash to dishwashing and laundry! It is great to take with you when you go camping as it is biodegradable and safe to use when washing your clothes, dishes or yourself in a river, lake or ocean!

Alternatively, you could just grate a couple of tbsp of solid soap bar and mix it with the water to turn it into a liquid soap, then add the oil, honey and fragrances.


Once again. let me know how you go with cooking up your own skin care! I hope you love making and using them as much as I do!

Home made cosmetics – Part 1: face cleanser, toner and tooth paste

Have you ever stopped to think how many chemicals our body comes in contact with on a daily basis?

Shampoo, deodorant, tooth paste, shaving/hair removal products, makeup, nail polish, perfume, even feminine hygiene products often contain harmful, irritating, carcinogenic or hormone disruptive ingredients.  Yet we lather these chemicals onto our skin voluntarily, several times a day. And what goes onto the skin, eventually gets absorbed into our bloodstream.

It makes total sense to use skincare products that are safe enough to ingest, right?! And the best way to do this is to make your own products using edible ingredients from the pantry!



I want to share with you the daily skin care “products” that I use daily. Making home-made cosmetics is super easy, I promise. And it gives you a sense of power knowing exactly what goes on your skin and into your body.

A word of warning though! I don’t measure much when cooking up food OR cosmetics! Just ask anyone who I‘ve ever had to pass a recipe to. (It’s a “pinch-of-this and-a-handful-of-that” kind of story!) So don’t worry too much about the exact measurements here either. These recipes aren’t too delicate so just give them a go and have fun experimenting!



I call my nightly face cleansing and toning  “my salad dressing ritual” because, well, you could as well pour this mix into your salad greens and voila, lunch is served!

I got the recipe for the cleanser from Wellness Mama’s blog, she is one inspiring lady and the queen of home-made anything!

I use the cleanser and toner at night time (in the mornings rinsing my face with warm water is enough for me). If your skin is very oily, this may not be the recipe for you, but it works a treat for my combination skin.

RECIPEcleanser and toner

The cleanser is simply olive oil mixed with a liquid honey. Roughly a ratio of 1 part honey to 4 parts oil. I store it in a small glass jar next to the sink. To apply, I dip a cotton ball into the oil-honey “dressing” and wipe my face with it. It cleanses gently and also removes make up well. Next I run a small face washer under very warm (but not hot) water, squeeze the excess water off, and gently wipe the oil off with it. I love to inhale the warmth of the towel as I press it to my face. Feels amazing!

I was a bit skeptical at first about using oil as a cleanser. Would it be cleansing enough? Would it clog my pores or make my skin break out? None of this happened though. Finishing off with a towel removes the oily feeling but leaves the skin nice and soft. I don’t need to moisturise with this method. And since olive oil is so good for us to eat, then why not applied externally aswell!



Next comes toner. With apple cider vinegar.. ummhh not so sure about this? I hear your doubts, but ACV is fantastic at brightening your your skin and balancing its pH. The vinegary smell disappears as soon as your face dries off so my tip is to wait for a few minutes after using the toner before you kiss your spouse goodnight! (Trust me…)


I mix about a table spoon of apple cider vinegar (organic if possible, I use Bragg’s) with about a half a cup of (preferably filtered) water and store it in a glass jar. Sometimes I go 50/50 with water and rose water for a rosey scent. Often I add in a few drops of essential oils of my choice. I like to use relaxing and calming oils, such as lavender or rose or jasmine, as this is my bedtime ritual, but you could use any you like. Apply normally with a cotton ball.



While we are talking about my nightly rituals, I want to share this fantastic recipe for a natural chemical-free tooth paste. I got the recipe  from my friend Olivia.

But before I get into it, you may wonder what’s wrong with the store bought toothpaste. Well, a lot actually. Without boring you with too long a story, let’s just say that one of the common ingredients of a conventional toothpaste is SLS (sodium laureth sulfate) is also used as a pesticide!  And when it comes to fluoride, it appears not to be as safe as we are lead to believe… (Read more about the chemicals and controversies in commercial toothpastes here)


Homemade toothpaste is as simple as this: mix equal parts or bicarb soda and very finely ground salt (I used pink Himalayan salt), add “enough” coconut oil (melted if not in liquid form already) to form a paste, 2-3 tablespoons should do, then add a few drop of peppermint essential oil to give it a fresh minty taste.  Scoop a little nugget onto your toothbrush, and brush way! Rinse your mouth well afterwards.


It takes a bit to get used to the saltiness of the toothpaste, but my teeth feel amazingly fresh and clean after using the paste, due to the salts abrasive quality. It is best to use salt that has a high mineral content (natural sea salt or Himalayan salt) and one that is as finely ground as possible. And if you are worried about the salt content, you can always alter the salt-bicarb ratio, say 1/3 salt to 2/3 bicarb.

The coconut oil also tends to harden in cool temperature but I have a little spoon next to my toothpaste jar that I use to scoop it onto my toothbrush. You could also dip the (glass) jar into hot water for a moment to soften it if you can be bothered.



That’s all for now friends!

Let me know how you go with cooking up your own cosmetics. And keep your eye out for more scrumptious potions to follow in the next few blog posts…



Riina Kosonen is a remedial massage therapist whose many passions include reducing waste and chemical exposure in our everyday life. She loves finding easy, simple ways of replacing conventional cleaning/beauty/hygiene products with a natural alternatives. Vinegar, bicarb and vegetable and essential oils are her best buddies on this mission.