Easy DIY Sugar Scrub Recipe

Nothing makes for a relaxing shower time ritual like an exfoliating sugar scrub. Learn how to make one from a few simple ingredients in this easy sugar scrub recipe. (Psst! If you like this sugar scrub recipe, you’ll love learning how to make bath salts.)

Growing up, body scrub products were a special luxury. They were a gift exchanged at the holidays, or something I picked up if I really needed to exfoliate my skin. Sugar scrubs were never a staple. And why would they be? All you need is soap and a loofah to exfoliate your skin. Right? 

Well, technically, yes. However, sugar scrubs provide a more thorough exfoliation than soap does since they are made up of small granules. 

white sugar scrub in open jar with white linen backgrouns

What is Sugar Scrub? 

Sugar Scrub is a type of body scrub that is applied in the shower for added exfoliation—it aids in the removal of dead skin particles to create smoother, softer skin. It comes in many different varieties and fragrances. It is often sold at luxury stores and featured in fragrant sets of beauty products.

However, most store-bought products come with loads of unnecessary ingredients and preservatives, which is why we came up with this easy sugar scrub recipe. It only requires a few ingredients, most of which you likely already have on hand, and it comes together in just a few minutes. 

three varieties of sugar scrub in pink brown and white on wooden background


  • 1 cup sugar
  • ⅓ cup coconut oil
  • 10-15 drops essential oil
  • 1 tablespoon jojoba oil (optional) 

Sugar – the granules in sugar are what make sugar scrub an exfoliant. The natural glycolic acid breaks down dead skin cells and makes the skin’s surface smooth and clean.

Coconut Oil – coconut oil is known for its moisturizing properties. Since this oil solidifies at room temperature, it’ll add a nice creamy smooth texture to any sugar scrub.

Essential Oils – essential oils add both fragrance as well as skin-healing properties to your sugar scrub.

Jojoba Oil – jojoba oil is rich in vitamins that nourish the skin and leave skin with a lovely glow.

How to Customize Sugar Scrub

Part of the magic of a sugar scrub is its bright color and yummy fragrance. To achieve natural color and smell, we suggest doing a bit of customization. I’ve experimented with a number of flavors in my sugar scrub. Like many of my other natural beauty recipes (like these bath bombs), I tend to enjoy using superfood powders to bring color to my home spa routine. Things like butterfly pea powder, rose powder, and matcha, all make beautiful and bright sugar scrub natural colorants.

When it comes to fragrance, essential oils are my go to. They provide potent fragrance and healing properties. It’s sort of a no-brainer. I’ve also experimented with vanilla extract, almond extract, and citrus juices. (By the way, here are our favorite essential oil roller bottle recipes.)

grapefruit slice, essential oils, and sugar scrub against slate background

Citrus Sugar Scrub

For a bright and colorful sugar scrub, try a few drops of grapefruit juice. I stumbled upon this idea on accident. I was looking for something I had on hand to make my sugar scrub a bit prettier, and I tried juicing a grapefruit. The results were gorgeous! For added fragrance, I went ahead and added some essential oils. Here’s the pretty, pink citrus recipe I concocted:

  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/3 cup coconut oil
  • 1 tablesoon jojoba oil
  • 2 teaspoon grapefruit juice
  • 10 drops lime essential oil
  • 10 drops wild orange essential oil
brown sugar, cinnamon stick, vanilla against slate background

Cinnamon-Vanilla Brown Sugar Recipe

For a warm and delicious sugar scrub, raid your pantry for zome cozy ingredients like vanilla extract and cinnamon. What I love about this recipe is I almost always already have these yummy ingredients on hand, much like all natural sea salt hair spray recipe. Here’s what you’ll do:

  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1/3 cup coconut oil
  • 1 tablespoon jojoba oil
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
lavender petals, white sugar scrub, dropper, essential oils against slate background

Lavender Sugar Scrub Recipe

This fragrant scrub will teleport you right to the spa. The lavender oil will revive and refresh your skin. Here’s what you need to put together this natural lavender sugar scrub recipe.

  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/3 cup coconut oil
  • 1 tablespoon jojoba oil
  • 20 drops lavender essential oil
closeup shot of lavender white sugar scrub

Other recipes often call for natural food coloring to provide color for sugar scrub, so you can definitely consider this option. However, homemade fruit juice seemed to do the trick, and I don’t have to worry about these ingredients hurting my skin in any way. (Check out our all natural lip balm recipe for hydrating moist lips.)

Another organic ingredient that adds color to homemade beauty products is superfood powders—blue spirulina, turmeric, or beet powder. Look at your pantry and use what you have on hand. 

hand holding white sugar scrub against white linen background

How to Make DIY Sugar Scrub 

Step 1 – Gather Your Supplies

First, gather your supplies. You’ll likely have many of  these ingredients on hand, and if not, they can be found at most grocery stores. 

Step 2 – Melt Oils Down

Once you’ve measured out your coconut oil and jojoba oil, use a microwave safe container to melt these oils down. Then, mix in any essential oils you would like for fragrance and additional nourishment. (Don’t worry about dilluting the essential oils, the coconut oil acts as a carrier oil in this recipe.)

Step 3 – Stir to Combine Sugar and Oil mixture

Blend the sugar in with the oil mixture. Be patient! It takes a while for the sugar to blend completely with the coconut oil.

various sugar scrubs against wooden background

Tips for Making Homemade Sugar Scrubs

What types of sugar can I use? 

Although we recommend white sugar for this sugar scrub recipe, you can easily swap it with brown sugar. Brown sugar will make a gentler exfoliant. We wouldn’t recommend sugars like turbinado or caster, which would make your scrub either too soft or too abrasive. 

What types of oils can I use? 

There are a number of great oils out there for homemade beauty products. We recommend coconut oil for this sugar scrub recipe because of its solidifying properties. However, you can easily swap coconut oil with any food-safe oil.

How do I add color to my sugar scrub? 

If you want to make your sugar scrub a more vibrant color, add superfood powders like butterfly pea flower or acai powder. Just make sure that they are skin-safe. 

Sugar Scrub Recipe

Sugar Scrub Recipe

Yield: 12 oz.
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Active Time: 1 minute
Total Time: 1 minute
Difficulty: easy

This simple sugar scrub recipe is an absolute game-changer. With ingredients you already likely have on hand, you'll be hooked on this bathtime treat.


  1. Melt coconut oil down to liquid form in a microwave safe bowl. Set aside.
  2. Combine melted coconut oil, jojoba oil, and essential oils.
  3. Add sugar to oil blend. Mix thoroughly.
  4. Move sugar scrub to jar with a seal.
  5. Apply to wet skin and rinse off for exfoliated and moistened skin.

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