Simple Beauty: Hawaiian Coffee Scrub

It's almost sandal season...

Coffee is an excellent base for an exfoliating body scrub. While sugar and salt are all the rage, I’m a girl in love with her coffee [I wake up every day simply to get my hands on a hot mug of it].

My favorite pick me up.

Pampering yourself is important and it dosen’t have to cost a fortune. With a few simple ingredients from your kitchen, you can whip up your very own body scrub. Make your morning shower as invigorating as your morning cup o’ joe [or tea].

Why Coffee?

Coffee is widely used for spa treatments in Bali and Hawaii. Some research has shown that the active constituents of coffee, when applied topically, can protect against damage to the skin caused by sun. Caffeine is known to have vasoconstrictive properties which might tighten and shrink blood vessels, adding in the reduction of varicose veins.

Even if it doesn’t erase your varicose veins, the delicious smell and coarse texture of coffee works perfectly for this recipe. Used coffee grounds could be incorporated into this recipe, however, the caffeine [vasoconstrictive effect] is removed by the steeping process. If you are primarily interested in exfoliating, feel free to reuse the grounds from your morning brew.

A slice of paradise in Seattle.


  • 1/2 cup coarsely ground caffeinated coffee
  • 3 tablespoons of the oil of your choice (olive oil, almond oil, kukui nut oil)
  • Put the coffee in a pretty glass jar
  • Incorporate the oil into the coffee, one tablespoon at a time
  • Put the lid on your pretty glass jar

I chose to use Kukui Nut Oil and Kona Coffee [grown in Hawaii]. The Kukui nut tree is the official tree of Hawaii and has a rich history of use; it’s superb for sunburns [which I learned last summer when I visited Hawaii]. The oil is highly penetrable and soothing; allowing it to be well absorbed into the skin. It provides tissues with essential fatty acids which can be beneficial for dry skin, psoriasis, acne and eczema. Plus, I recently made a multi balm using it and I am in LOVE!

Disclaimer: you WILL smell like coffee! If you don’t enjoy the smell of coffee, use this scrub on target areas vs. your whole body.

All I need is some sand and sun.

As always, buy high quality beans and oil. Anything that is applied to your body should be of the highest quality. Date your creation and if it doesn’t smell or look quite right after a few days, toss it! Preservative free doesn’t last forever!

Free labels! {Tape and scissors not included}

P.S. I made the labels by cutting sheets of printer sized paper from old paper bags. I traced a sheet of paper on to the paper bag, cut, and then placed it into my printer tray. Here’s the PDF if you’d like to download my labels.


Botanical Medicine Dispensary Class Notes, C. Stelzer


19 responses to “Simple Beauty: Hawaiian Coffee Scrub

  1. Coffee scrubs are so nice! I use a fine-mesh filter when I shower with my scrub to prevent the grounds from wreaking havoc on my pipes. :)

  2. Sounds lovely! But, we should be aware that caffeine is water soluble and won’t dissolve into the oil. So, unless the scrub is left on the skin, it’s unlikely there will be any vasoconstrictive effect. Although, that still won’t stop me from trying it! ;0)

  3. I never even thought about the vasoconstrictive properties when being used topically – good call Pre! And I absolutely love your pictures! We always have lots of coffee grounds here if you want some extra. We usually use them in the garden and Jesse does his thing to make fire starters (I don’t really know what he does though … lol).

    • You should have him write a blog post on making the fire starter log…That thing is amazing! I’m glad you like my pictures :) I’ve been having way too much fun with my camera.

      I hadn’t thought about using extra grounds in the garden, great idea! I used bone meal last year but I wasn’t 100% okay with using it (even the high grade, organic version). Getting nitrogen into the soil from coffee sounds like a better idea :)

  4. Hi, I love coffee! And i love this idea, i want to do it as soon as possible:) I was wondering if i could use canola oil? its kinda the only stuff we have right now and being on vacation we are really busy.

    • Hi Lindsey! I think canola oil would work, however, I recommend something that would benefit your skin as well like olive, grape seed or almond oil!

  5. What coffee do you recommend using? Will this help tighten skin? I am in the process of losing weight and always scared of lose skin. I have lost about 70lbs have 25lbs left and i want to start preparing now and doing what ever i can to not have the skin. Also do you replace this with your everyday body scrub and use this or use this than yourregualr body scrub in the shower? Thanks can’t wait to try this!

    • Congratulations on your amazing weight loss!!! So inspirational! I wouldn’t use any type of scrub every day, it causes micro abrasion to your skin and that just isn’t healthy. Ideally, I would say once or twice per week. I am not sure if this will tighten your skin BUT I would love to know the results that you achieve if you do try it.

  6. Found this from Pinterest.
    I just made some using coconut oil (I had to melt it in the microwave first). I’m giving it to my dad as part of his Father’s Day gift. He has bad eczema on his hands. He uses his hands a lot for his line of work and they’re always covered in grease, which doesn’t help his eczema. I’ve heard that coffee scrubs work great for people with eczema, so I thought this would be a good thing for him to try. My kids and I tried some of it out on our own hands as I was making it, and I couldn’t believe the huge improvement after just one use! My hands have never been softer! Thanks for sharing! :)

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