I’ve had a few requests for a facial cleanser that’s creamy, yet exfoliating, and here’s what I’ve come up with. It’s thick, creamy, scrubby, and sudsy, and smells awesome to boot—an exfoliating creamy cleansing balm!
Based around my Gentle Cleansing Balm, this creamy cleanser gets an exfoliating punch from some ground pumice. If your face doesn’t need that much scrubbing power, baking soda is an awesome alternative.
The cream soap paste (which you make yourself, and quite easily at that) is diluted with shea butter and avocado oil to create a rich, creamy balm that softens up wonderfully when massaged into the skin.
The balm isn’t immediately scrubby feeling, but once you start gently massaging it into your face, you’ll notice the pumice. Pumice is a pretty aggressive exfoliant, so I’ve barely added any, but trust me—it gets the job done.
After rinsing your face, you’ll find it wonderfully soft and smooth. I did a half/half comparison on my face when I first made it, and I found myself constantly stroking my exfoliated cheek in wonder.
Exfoliating Creamy Cleansing Balm
2 tsp kaolin clay (or other fine clay)
½ tsp fine ground pumice
~20g | 0.7oz avocado oil
2 blobs labdanum essential oil
5 drops petitgrain essential oil
Combine the soap paste and shea butter in a glass measuring cup or bowl and heat over a hot water bath until the shea butter melts. Mash up the soap paste with a fork (you’ll end up with blobs of soap paste), remove the dish from the heat, and let everything come to room temperature.
Using a set of electric beaters at high speed, beat the soap and shea butter together (I recommend hearing protection). You need to blast the soap paste into teensy little bits so you don’t have clods of soap in the mixture. You’re done when the mixture looks homogenous.
Add the clay and pumice, and beat everything together. The mixture will be pretty dry. Add avocado oil about 5g at a time, blending between additions, until you get a texture you’re happy with.
Blend in the essential oils, and then decant the balm into a wide-mouthed container.
To use, begin by wetting your face. Scoop a teaspoon or so of the cleansing balm into your hands, add a bit of water, and lather it up before applying it to your face. Massage your face with your finger tips in a small circular motions. Rinse and wipe off, and follow up with some argan oil if your skin feels dry.