See how to make easy homemade Christmas sugar scrub recipes. The natural holiday body scrubs are great DIY gifts ideas. Included are instructions for gingerbread, hot chocolate, candy cane, orange spice, pomegranate, sugar plum, and vanilla cookie exfoliating scrubs. The tutorial also comes with tips for packaging and free printable labels.

Homemade Christmas Sugar Scrub Recipes

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Christmas Sugar Scrub Recipes

I’m so excited for you to try these Christmas sugar scrub recipes for the holidays (or anytime), for yourself or as a gift. While these sugar scrub gifts are sure to impress, this homemade sugar scrub recipe is actually quite simple and made with ingredients you may already have in your (beauty) pantry.

You might notice that these sugar scrub recipes are similar to my growling skin body scrubs and sea salt scrub, in that we’re creating a simple coconut oil body scrub base. The process is speedy and easy, even if you’ve never made a homemade skincare recipe before or need cute last-minute Christmas gift ideas.

These Christmas sugar scrub ideas are very festive and fun, while also providing amazing skincare benefits. The holiday sugar scrubs exfoliate and moisturize at the same time, giving your skin that holiday glow. And, you can customize them to your heart’s content– I’m offering lots of ideas for that below!

First up is a yummy Christmas cookie sugar scrub. This festive body scrub feels incredibly pampering on the skin and will leave your entire body baby smooth. Bonus: It smells like dessert.

Bitter almond flavor oil and vanilla extract bring out that fresh-out-of-the-oven cookie smell. A good helping of colorful sprinkles is reminiscent of iced sugar cookies everyone loves. I created the pale-yellow color with a little yellow mica powder.

With this sugar cookie scrub, you’re not limited to the holiday season. It’s a great product year-round and would be a lovely addition to a birthday spa hamper.

I want to credit Kim and Kyla from A Life Adjacent for being the first bloggers to create a cookie essential oil blend with vanilla and bitter almond oil in their Sugar Cookie Body Butter. Be sure to check out their lovely recipe!

Years ago, we also suggested using vanilla extract and bitter almond extract as an optional ingredient in this cinnamon sugar scrub from 2016.

#2 Sugar Plum Body Scrub 💜

The Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy is my favorite act in The Nutcracker, and I just had to dedicate a body scrub to Tchaikovsky’s masterpiece. The scrub features an enchanting blend of plum oil, and mica powder lends a gorgeous purple color.

Plum oil has a fruity-sweet smell, similar to marzipan or macarons. The ultra-moisturizing oil is lightweight, easily absorbable, and stock-full of nourishing vitamins, antioxidants, and fatty acids. Its anti-inflammatory properties can help to reduce irritation, dark spots, puffiness, and dry skin.

Now, if you want to splurge and treat your skin, add a little Davidson plum powder to the recipe. The powder is quite expensive, but incredible nutrient-rich and has a beautiful burgundy color.

Bitter almond and copaiba oil pair beautifully with the plum oil and create a yummy-sweet Christmas fragrance.

#3 Gingerbread Sugar Scrub ✨

My DIY gingerbread sugar scrub recipe is another holiday favorite. This scrumptious DIY body scrub harnesses the exfoliating power of brown sugar crystals, and a skin-loving blend of coconut oil and ground spices to leave your skin feeling supple.

Brown sugar boasts more exfoliating power than regular sugar, which is especially useful to buff rough elbows, knees, and feet. Your skin will feel baby-soft.

Ground spices lend the DIY brown sugar scrub a delicious scent that lingers ever-so-slightly as you go about your day. Gingerbread spice, pumpkin pie spice, or just cinnamon are good options.

I also infused the gingerbread body scrub with copaiba, ginger root, and clove essential oil, which create a warming sensation on the skin.

For more gingerbread inspired beauty and aromatherapy gifts, have a look at this list of holiday essential oil gifts.

#4 Orange Sugar Scrub 🍊

This luxe spiced orange sugar scrub brings a citrus grove and spa directly to your bathroom. The vitamin-rich DIY orange sugar scrub deeply sloughs and brightens the skin, while the invigorating scent uplifts your mind.

I formulated the scrub with freshly grated orange zest, sweet orange essential oil, and clove bud oil. If you have sensitive skin, I’d omit the clove bud EO and add a sprinkle of ground cloves. Cardamom essential oil also pairs nicely with the orange fragrance.

I didn’t color my homemade orange body scrub. The orange zest and essential oil were enough to create a light orange hue. If you prefer a more intense color, you could add a little orange mica or annatto powder.

#5 Pomegranate Sugar Scrub 🔴

My pomegranate body scrub relies on an array of natural ingredients to polish away rough patches: sugar for gentle exfoliation, pomegranate powder removes impurities, and pomegranate seed oil to revitalize the skin. All wrapped up in a fruity-fresh scent.

Pomegranates are heavy in antioxidants and a rich source of vitamin C. The fruit is said to stimulate cell regeneration, protect against premature skin aging, and prevent hyperpigmentation and age spots.

Pomegranate oil penetrates the skin deeply and is amazingly effective for treating dry, dull skin. The oil also helps to regulate oil production, which makes the ingredient useful to combat breakouts and acne.

I highlighted the mild fruit scent of the pomegranate oil with hints of palmarosa and tangerine, but you can omit the essential oils if you prefer.

#6 Hot Chocolate Sugar Scrub ☕

Hot chocolate is my favorite winter drink, and so I just HAD to make a DIY hot chocolate sugar scrub. The recipe combines brown sugar, raw cacao powder and coconut oil to smooth away dead skin cells and deliver a smoothing burst of moisture.

Surprisingly, cacao does plenty for skincare. Cacao has powerful antioxidant capacities, which help protect cells from oxidation and aging, soothe redness and improve the skin’s complexion. It also contains important trace minerals like iron, copper, and zinc.

For the best skincare benefits, buy raw, unprocessed cacao powder. Cacao powder is made from fermented beans that have not been roasted. They are processed at low temperatures and then milled into a powder. The result is a powder that’s bitter in taste and higher in nutritional content.

Cocoa powder, on the other hand, is processed at much higher temperatures and doesn’t contain as many nutrients as cacao powder.

I scented my hot cocoa sugar scrub with vanilla oleoresin and cocoa absolute to create a rich chocolate aroma. These essential oils are optional. Without them, the DIY body scrub has a lovely, light chocolate scent.

#7 Candy Cane Sugar Scrub 🍬

Candy canes are a holiday classic, and this list of natural Christmas body scrubs wouldn’t be complete without a DIY candy cane sugar scrub. Sugar, coconut oil, peppermint EO and vanilla oleoresin create a delicious body buff.

I left the mixture uncolored but sprinkled some red jojoba beads to up the festive flair of this homemade peppermint sugar scrub. Jojoba beads are tiny spheres made from jojoba oil and exfoliate very gently.

If you can’t find jojoba beads, tint half of your DIY cand cane scrub pink or red, and layer white and colored scrub into your jar or storage container. It’ll look very festive!

Check out this post if you want to pair the homemade peppermint body scrub with a candy cane body butter.

#8 Christmas Tree Body Scrub 🎄

My Christmas tree sugar scrub is scented with a forest-fresh blend of fir needle + cedarwood and hints of cinnamon. This is a great body scrub for men who will enjoy the not-so-sweet, woodsy fragrance. It can be hard to find presents for guys, but this pine scrub is an easy gift idea for him.

Fir needle EO stimulates circulation, and the oils anti-bacterial properties help to thwart body blemishes and keep new ones at bay. With its anti-inflammatory compounds, cedarwood essential oil is said to soothe irritated skin and calm eczema flare-ups.

Both oils also level out the skin’s sebum production to help reduce breakouts. I also find the balsamic scent incredibly calming and grounding.

#9 Winter Body Scrub ❄️

Enriched with nourishing coconut oil, my DIY winter body scrub is formulated with fine salt crystals that gently polish your body, removing dead skin cells to leave fresh looking skin that feels oh-so-smooth.

I wanted to capture the chilly smell of a frosted forest. The bracing aroma of the eucalyptus, peppermint, and Scots pine essential oils stimulate circulation and provide mind-clearing aromatherapy for your senses.

The benefit of sea salt is that the scrub will remineralize the skin. You can find more info in my sea salt scrub recipe. Of course, you can prepare this essential oil scrub recipe with sugar instead of sea salt.

Okay, now let’s talk about how to make Christmas sugar scrub, ingredients, packaging, storage and usage.

DIY pomegranate sugar scrub recipe

Christmas sugar scrub ingredients

The combination of texture, smell, and only a handful of ingredients all make the best sugar scrub. Here’s what we need to make DIY Christmas sugar scrub gifts:

  • sugar: Obviously, sugar is the main exfoliant in a sugar-based body scrub. I mostly used fine, granulated sugar (caster sugar) as it provides gentle exfoliation.
  • liquid carrier oil: Using a liquid oil ensures that the scrubs don’t harden. I used fractionated coconut oil in most recipes. Other liquid carrier oils will work fine, too, for example, jojoba oil, grapeseed oil, or sweet almond oil.
  • essential oils: Essential oils not only lend a natural scent, but they also provide additional skin care benefits. If you have sensitive skin, either reduce the amount of essential oils or omit them completely.
  • vitamin E oil (optional): Vitamin E nourishes and moisturizes, keeping your skin hydrated and supple. As a potent antioxidant, vitamin E oil also fights free radicals and may prevent premature signs of ageing.
  • co-exfoliator (optional): Co-exfoliators support the exfoliating activity of the sugar and can include materials such as dried herbs or jojoba beads, which I added to the peppermint body scrub.
  • colorants (optional): Fruit and plant powders are the most natural colorants for scrubs, but they tend to be pricier than the other options. Micas, fine cosmetic powders, are a cost-effective and readily available colorant for sugar scrubs. Food colors aren’t ideal, but you may use them if that’s what you have.
Christmas cookie body scrub

Do sugar scrubs need a preservative?

How do you preserve sugar scrubs? is a question I get asked A LOT. So here are some insights on preservatives in body scrubs:

Preservatives are generally only needed for products containing water that range within certain pH levels. Since these holiday scrub recipes are oil-based and don’t have any water, a preservative isn’t needed. In fact, most homemade sugar scrub recipes are made without one, and that’s fine.

You don’t have to add a preservative to these DIY Christmas sugar scrub recipes. Just be sure that no water enters the storage container during use. I’ll share more tips on that below.

However, if you suppose your DIY body scrub might come in contact with water during use, then a preservative can be useful to prevent mold and bacteria.

I recommend a preservative called VegeCide for this recipe. VegeCide is entirely made from plants, natural and oil-soluble. Most other preservatives are only water-soluble and won’t work in this coconut oil scrub recipe.

Sugar plum body scrub

Tools

Good news, you don’t need any fancy equipment to make your own sugar scrubs at home. And the tools you do need are probably already in your cupboard.

  • glass mixing bowl: Plastic and metal can react with some ingredients (e.g. clay, essential oils), so a glass mixing bowl is your best option.
  • spoon or whisk: You need a spoon or whisk to mix your sugar scrub and transfer the product into a storage container.

How to make Christmas scrub

How do you make a Christmas sugar scrub? My sugar scrub recipes are effortless and quick. In fact, homemade sugar scrub is one of the easiest and most beginner-friendly beauty DIYs there is.

Let me show you the easy steps for how to make DIY sugar scrub:

  1. Blend liquid ingredients. Add the carrier oil, essential oils, and vitamin E into a jar or small mixing bowl and stir to mix.
  2. Combine dry materials. Put the sugar, mica powder and other dry ingredients (e.g. spices, jojoba beads, cacao) into a large mixing bowl. Stir to combine. Tip: If using orange zest, place the sugar and zest into a food processor and blend until everything is well blended.
  3. Mix sugar scrub. Pour the oils over the sugar and combine.
  4. Package and store. Transfer the sugar scrub into airtight glass jars or storage containers and store sealed until ready to use.

How much does the recipe make?

This essential oil sugar scrub recipe yields approximately 1 cup / 270 g / 9.5 oz product. In case you need more holiday gifts, simply double or triple the recipe.

Spiced orange sugar scrub recipe

Packaging and gifting sugar scrub

Homemade sugar scrub jars are beautiful DIY Christmas gifts.

I filled my Christmas sugar scrubs scrub in flip-top jars. Glass jars are an ecofriendly and sustainable packaging idea and the best choice for storing products containing essential oils. I also decorated my jars with festive printable sugar scrub labels. You can download your free copy at the end of the post.

Another packaging idea is to fill the scrub into 4-oz mason jars and place the printable label between the flat lid and screw band. Mason jars are perfect for packaging homemade beauty gifts. They are widely available, come in all sorts of sizes, and the recipient can continue using the pot after the homemade Christmas scrub is gone.

Decorate the top with a piece of fabric or colorful paper and tie a piece of ribbon or garden twine around the jar for added color.

Winter sugar scrub recipe

How to use holiday body scrub

This homemade body scrub will keep your skin radiant and glowing. For the best skincare benefits, it’s important to use it correctly. Here are a few tips for how to use sugar scrub to exfoliate your skin:

  • Always use a spoon or spatula to remove body scrub from the jar. It’s very important not to get water into the product during use.
  • Be gentle when exfoliating to avoid hurting yourself and use scrub only on intact skin.
  • To avoid damaging your skin, make sure your body is thoroughly wet and softened with warm water – overly hot water can dry your skin.
  • Don’t use the scrub on irritated or inflamed skin, or open wounds.
  • Follow up with lotion or body butter afterwards.

In the shower or bath

Using the scrub in the shower or bath is perfect for exfoliating arms, legs, and body. Wet your skin with warm water. Then massage small amounts of scrub on your skin. Rinse off with plenty of water.

To exfoliate hands and feet

You can also use the scrub to exfoliate only certain parts of your body like your hands or bottom of your feet. Take a little scrub and rub in a circular motion on the area you want to treat.

As lip sugar scrub

These sugar scrub recipes are also excellent lip scrubs. Pick up a small amount with your fingertip and massage it all over your lips with gentle pressure and in circular motions. Leave on for two minutes, then wash away and wipe clean with a tissue.

How often should you use the sugar scrub recipe?

Use the DIY sugar scrub recipe 2 to 3 times a week. Over-exfoliating can irritate the skin. If you have sensitive skin, limit the use to once a week.

Can I use the scrub on my face?

No, this scrub is not suitable for the face. The sugar granules are too coarse for facial applications and could damage the delicate skin of your face.

DIY gingerbread sugar scrub

Storage

Here are some tips for how to store sugar scrub and for how to prevent sugar scrub from hardening and drying out:

  • Store your essential oil sugar scrub in a cool, dry place, for example, a cupboard.
  • Chose a waterproof, airtight container. Humidity may cause the sugar to clump and harden.
  • Keep the scrub away from sunlight and any heat sources. Heat and sunlight can break down the essential oils.
  • Ensuring that the storage container is always tightly closed is the best way for how to prevent sugar scrub from hardening and drying out.

Shelf life

The DIY Christmas body scrub can be kept for 1-2 years if made with fresh materials. The ingredient with the shortest best before date will determine the overall shelf life of this easy body scrub recipe.

Hot chocolate sugar scrub

More DIY body scrub recipes

If you like these DIY Christmas sugar scrub recipes, you might also like some of my other natural body exfoliator recipes:

More natural beauty Christmas gift ideas

If you’re interested in making natural holiday gifts, check out these homemade Christmas gift ideas:

Yield: 1 1/4 CUP / 280 G / 10 OZ

9 Christmas Sugar Scrub Recipes

DIY Christmas Sugar Scrub Recipes

See how to make easy homemade Christmas sugar scrub recipes. The natural holiday body scrubs are great DIY gifts ideas and include instructions for gingerbread, hot chocolate, candy cane, orange spice, pomegranate, sugar plum, and vanilla cookie exfoliating scrubs.

Prep Time 5 minutes
Total Time 5 minutes
Difficulty easy

Materials

Christmas Cookie Sugar Scrub

Candy Cane Sugar Scrub

Sugar Plum Sugar Scrub

Spiced Orange Sugar Scrub

Hot Cocoa Sugar Scrub

Pomegranate Sugar Scrub

Gingerbread Sugar Scrub

Christmas Tree Sugar Scrub

Winter Sugar Scrub

Tools

Instructions

  1. Add the carrier oil, essential oils, and vitamin E into a jar or small mixing bowl and stir to mix.
  2. Put the sugar, mica powder/colorant and other dry ingredients (e.g. spices, jojoba beads, cacao) into a large mixing bowl. Stir to combine. Tip: If using orange zest, place the sugar and zest into a food processor and blend until everything is well blended.
  3. Pour the oils from Step 1 over the sugar. Mix until combined and the sugar has soaked up the oil.
  4. Transfer the sugar scrub into airtight glass jars or storage containers and store sealed until ready to use.

Notes

Essential oil safety

To ensure these sugar scrubs are enjoyable for everyone, follow these safety tips:

  • Kids: The sugar scrubs are intended for adults. Kids don’t need to use body scrubs as their skin is thinner than adult skin. However, if you suppose the scrubs might be used by children, sub for the kid-safe EOs I listed. 
  • Sensitive skin: Sensitive skin types should avoid spice essential oils (e.g. cinnamon, clove bud) as they can be irritating.     
  • Pregnancy and breastfeeding: Essential oils should be avoided during pregnancy (especially the first trimester) and by those who are breastfeeding.       
  • Medical conditions: Talk to a physician or medical caregiver about the safe use of essential oils in your situation.

Sugar scrubs without essential oils

It’s possible to create most of my Christmas sugar scrub recipes without essential oils. Granted, the scent will not be as strong, but they will smell delicious thanks to the other aromatic ingredients. 
The orange, sugar plum, gingerbread, pomegranate, and Christmas tree scrubs can be prepared without essential oil and will still smell wonderful.

Can I use peppermint or vanilla extract?

Yes, you can scent the scrubs with flavor oils (e.g. from LorAnn) instead of essential oils. The extract must be oil-based. Alcohol-based extracts will melt the sugar and aren’t suitable for sugar scrubs.

*Bitter almond oil

I simply used a flavor oil from LorAnn. I also had success with this bitter almond flavor from Dr Oetker.

Pure bitter almond essential oil, which technically isn't an essential oil, can be quite difficult to source. Due to the high contents of benzaldehyde and hydrocyanic (prussic acid), bitter almond oil can be dangerous if used incorrectly and should be handled with great care.

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Christmas Sugar Scrub Labels

Tab or click the button below to download a free printable holiday scrub labels!

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