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As a dyed in the wool second generation workaholic, self-care has historically not been my strong suite. I can just power through, I’ve always thought. I don’t need to slow down, that’s for other people, I thought. I’ll just eat my feelings, I thought.
But that’s the thing about waking up in your 30s one day: your body is no longer a silent partner as you drive yourself into the ground. It was a Reese on Reese mutiny over here as I tried to power through a series of 14 hour days and instead wound up with a horrible eczema flare up that would not quit.
And then, dear reader, I discovered massages. And linen sprays. And facials. And naps. And, and, and… Dear God, where have I been? How have I been living?
Turns out, I love some self-care. I not only love it, I’m now constantly looking for little ways to squeeze more into my daily routine… including trashing my Valentine’s Day bouquet to make a DIY rose and Meyer lemon salt scrub, much to my boyfriend’s confusion.
He gave me two dozen gorgeous red roses and as you may remember from my Upcycled Christmas Tree Table Runner post, I get pretty rowdy when someone brings a lot of plant matter into my life. You see an old Christmas tree? I see crafts. You see a Valentine’s Day bouquet? I see DIY salt scrub.
Creatively viewing waste and seeing opportunities to upcycle before you discard is an important part of living a more environmentally friendly lifestyle. And while yes, you can just toss your roses and let them peaceably compost after Valentine’s Day, the environmental impact of Valentine’s Day flowers is no small thing (though my boyfriend assured me he went to great lengths to make sure mine were sustainably sourced, etc) and you can read about it in this International Business Times article here.
Finally, why should you specifically use roses for your DIY salt scrub? Roses actually have amazing skin care benefits, including anti-inflammatory characteristics, antibacterial properties, pH balancing qualities, and are said to be beneficial in treating acne, rosacea, and mild scarring.
Ready to upcycle your Valentine’s Day bouquet into a relaxing DIY Rose and Meyer Lemon Salt Scrub? Ready to relax and enjoy softer, healthier skin without washing toxic chemicals down the drain? Let’s do this.
DIY Rose and Meyer Lemon Salt Scrub
1 cup finely ground Himalayan salt
1/2 cup coconut oil, heated to a liquid
2 large roses
2 Meyer lemons
1 tablespoon dried organic lavender flowers
lavender, rose, or citrus essential oils (optional)
Reese’s Notes: Himalayan salt is said to be purer and contain more minerals than table salt. Refined coconut oil will have less of a coconut smell, I used unrefined though. Meyer lemons have an incredible fragrance. Do remember that an excess of citrus essential oil may cause sun sensitivity before you go nuts with the EOs!
How to make your DIY Rose and Meyer Lemon Salt Scrub
Remove any damaged or bruised outer petals from your roses and toss on the compost heap. Then pluck off your petals and gently soak in cold water for 5 minutes, stirring once or twice.
Using a sharp paring knife, gently peel your Meyer lemons, leaving the pith and only harvesting as much of the peels as possible. (I always find zesting leaves more peel on the grate than in the bowl.)
Lay your petals in single layers on the trays of your dehydrator. Repeat with your Meyer lemon peel. Layer your trays on your dehydrator and set to medium for approximately one hour, checking from time to time. Your roses go from soft petals to “crispy” rather abruptly.
Refine your ingredients using a mortar and pestle (I’m addicted to these things), sharp knife and cutting board, or food processor. I don’t recommend the food processor for the petals, as they’ll stick to the sides and be hard to remove. The dried lavender ground down beautifully with the mortar and pestle but I preferred to chop the peels.
Pour your salt into a medium bowl, add 1 teaspoon of each of your dried ingredients (or as desired, if you want a heavier rose or citrus scent) and stir. Then add your liquified coconut oil and stir thoroughly. Add essential oils, if desired, and stir again.
Package your DIY Rose and Meyer Lemon Salt Scrub in glass jars and enjoy or give away to friends! This quick and easy DIY makes an adorable gift with a hand-crafted spoon.
I love my salt scrub, it’s such a treat for my winter-traumatized skin and for the senses. It’s a great way to make even a hurried shower feel like a spa treatment.
Final note: the coconut oil may make your shower slippery, so be careful not to fall and wash any oil residue away with hot water. I just use my scrub before I wash my hair, so the shampoo suds take care of it for me.