I see coffee and sugar scrubs everywhere on Instagram! I have tried a few but felt kind of underwhelmed. One was so oily, I spent more time cleaning the shower than I did using the scrub! I have been meaning to make this Green Coffee, Cardamom & Pink Grapefruit Body Polish for a while. I have to admit, it’s amazing.
A few years ago, I purchased a gorgeous,
I planted it in a sheltered spot, in my sandy soil, but with a generous helping of compost. Then I doted on it, eagerly anticipating the fragrant white flowers that would be followed by red berries in the winter, each berry with two coffee beans inside.
How amazing would homegrown coffee be, right?
But, one particularly hot summer dashed those dreams, and my beautiful coffee tree’s leaves burned, not long after it withered and died.
Along with my home-cultivated coffee dreams!
I live just outside of the “Bean belt”, the space between the Tropic of Cancer and the Tropic of Capricorn, where the subtropical coffee tree thrives. Apparently, coffee trees perform much better in the hills of Perth if they can be planted in a more subtropical microclimate.
I don’t drink a lot of coffee (it makes me jittery), but I love it.
My new favourite way to consume coffee is using this Green Coffee, Cardamon and Pink Grapefruit Body Polish! With just 4 ingredients, this mildly exfoliating polish not only smells incredible, but it is also stimulating and makes my skin feel awesome.
What is Green Coffee?
Green coffee is simply hulled and dried coffee beans that have not gone through the roasting process. It is much higher in anti-oxidants than roasted coffee, and green coffees’ ingested extract is reputed to have a positive effect on your metabolism, weight loss, memory enhancement, liver health, blood pressure and blood sugar and cholesterol.
Did you know that you can absorb caffeine through your skin?
I discovered this when using a henna hair treatment that had a healthy dose of coffee added to the blend, for colour and to presumably mask the pungent smell of the henna. The treatment was meant to sit on my scalp for a few hours, but I rinsed it out after just thirty minutes. I developed a throbbing headache, much like the ones I get when I would have a strong coffee or two. There is evidence that skin absorption of caffeine (and magnesium salts) is swiftest via the hair follicles. But not so much the rest of your body.
Green coffee has about 5 times less caffeine than roasted coffee, so I haven’t had any trouble with this recipe! It does feel stimulating, but not buzzy.
There is some evidence that caffeine absorbed via the skin can have an anti-inflammatory effect. This finding prompted the addition of caffeine to all kinds of skin care products from eye-gels to caffeine-infused weight-loss tights.
I’ll tell you straight up. This body polish won’t miraculously make you skinny.
Green coffee smells grassier and more floral than its roasted counterpart, much less overpowering, but still distinctly coffee. You can find green coffee at specialty coffee roasters, cafe supply stores and even at some whole goods stores.
Thankfully, have a much easier time growing cardamom in my garden. It does need to be well watered and kept in dappled shade to ensure its tender leaves are not scorched by the sun. Mine have yet to fruit, but the leaves are deliciously aromatic. A single leaf added to cooking rice flavours and perfumes the dish.
Like green coffee, there
Cardamom is the third most expensive spice after saffron and vanilla, the small green pods smell deliciously spicy, resinous, sweet and aromatic. It pairs beautifully with the green coffee.
I buy whole cardamom pods at my local independent grocer who has an amazing array of spices. You can substitute pre-ground powder if you can’t find whole pods.
Ahhhhh pink grapefruit. I bet you can almost smell them right?
Pink grapefruit is one of my all-time favourite scents, sparkling, fresh and uplifting. This recipe uses the zest, but don’t let the fruit go to waste!
Pink grapefruit is one of the lowest calorie fruits, high in fibre and dense in nutrients like Vitamins C & A, Potassium, Thiamine, Folate and Magnesium. Plus, it’s delicious!
If you are not fortunate enough to have a tree of your own, pink grapefruits are in season year-round in Australia. Like all citrus, pink grapefruits don’t ripen once picked and they can take up to 10 months to ripen on the tree. Choose fragrant, heavy fruit. Since we will be using the zest in this recipe, it is essential to source pesticide-free or organic fruit.
The fourth ingredient is simple, Epsom salt (magnesium sulfate).
If you are a gardener, you’ve likely used an Epsom salt solution to fertilize and improve flower blooming, to enhance a plant’s green colour and help plants grow bushier.
The Epsom salt has a couple of functions in this recipe, firstly as a preservative, to prevent the other ingredients from spoiling.
Secondly, Epsom salts are traditionally used to ease aching muscles and aid skin repair. You can find Epsom salt at the supermarket in the medicinal aisle.
If you would like to create your own home apothecary, Epsom salts are an absolute essential to have on hand! Check out our Creating Your Home Apothecary Guide, available for instant download in our Subscriber Resource Library! Everything you need to start making your own skin, body care and wellness products in your own home.
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Green Coffee, Cardamom and Pink Grapefruit Skin Polish
You will need
- 250g Green Coffee Beans (pre-ground if you don’t have a coffee grinder)
- 5g of Cardamom pods (or 10g of pre-ground Cardamom powder)
- Finely grated zest of 3 pesticide free, Pink Grapefruits.
- 300g of Epsom Salt
Add cardamom pods to a coffee grinder with the green coffee beans.
Set aside in a bowl. In a blender, add the pink grapefruit zest and process with the Epsom salts until the mix resembles wet sand.
Add the ground cardamom and green coffee and blend to incorporate.
Put in a sealed jar and keep in a cool, dark dry space. Green Coffee, Cardamon & Pink Grapefruit Body Polish will keep for ages and the perfume is best after a few days once everything has a chance to blend.
To use, grab a generous handful and use in the shower. I use this on my thighs and bum, elbows and shoulders a few times a week. I leave on for a few minutes before rinsing off.
Please avoid using this Green Coffee, Cardamon & Pink Grapefruit Body Polish on more delicate skin like your face or breasts.
You can add this Green Coffee, Cardamon & Pink Grapefruit Body Polish to an amount of oil before you use, but it’s not my preference because I hate being in a slippery shower, getting the oil residue on my towels and cleaning up after! As soon as I dry off after my shower I apply body oil anyway.
If you suffer mild dandruff, this Green Coffee, Cardamon & Pink Grapefruit Body Polish can be even used in your hair, as the Epsom salts can cleanse the scalp. Rub a small handful through wet hair and leave on for a few minutes. Just be sure to rinse your hair thoroughly.
You could also use this Green Coffee, Cardamon & Pink Grapefruit Body Polish as an uplifting bath soak, just secure a handful in some muslin cloth tied with
If you notice any irritation at all, discontinue use.
I hope you give this a try, leave a comment below or tag me @afarmofyourhome on Instagram and let me know what you think!
Information on the traditional uses and properties of herbs are provided here are for educational use only, and is not intended as medical advice. If you have any serious health concerns, you should always check with your health care practitioner before self-administering herbs.