Salt in Salt Scrub Recommendations

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A

amd

I have a salon that is interested in using my foaming foot scrub (made with foaming bath base and ground pumice) at their pedicure station. Given the volume of pedicures they do, I am planning to do some experimentation with salts and sugars instead of the ground pumice - I just think the pumice at that volume will be hard on their plumbing.

Looking at the variety of salts - what is the recommended salt type for this type of scrub?
I see a lot of recommendations for extra fine pink himalayan salt, but I'm a bit hesitant to use it after my experience with it in a salt bar (it was far too sharp and left welts/micro scratches).
I also see recommendations for dead sea salt - which I understand in salt bars shouldn't be used as it will become weepy. I assume it will have the same result in a scrub and absorb far more moisture than other salt types.

I'm going to start with canning and pickling salt, as I have that on hand and know it works well with salt bars, but appreciate any recommendations. Bonus points if you can steer me to a good supplier.
 

Obsidian

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I wouldn't use Himalayan for the reasons you stated, regular sea salt would work well.

Do you have winco grocery stores or some other stores that sell bulk foods? You can get sea salt for pretty cheap there.

Nothing wrong with canning salt but sea salt might have better label appeal for a salon.
 

justjacqui

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I prefer sugar for scrubs. There are many options for particle size and it is less likely to sting if you have a cut / broken skin.

You could add a small amount of pumice for label appeal.
 
A

amd

Thanks for the replies, I have been leaning towards sugar as I use that in regular body scrubs. I was thinking though that because sugar dissolves so much easier than salt, that salt would be the better option to use for pedicures where extra exfoliation is needed. I have feet "with issues" (seriously, they're like leather) and sugar doesn't make a dent in them, which is the other reason I was looking at salt. I haven't tried a salt scrub before, so I don't know how they compare.

The salon is currently using a salt scrub (from another supplier), but one of the stylists uses my foot scrub and wanted the owner to try it to see if it's better. This wouldn't be packaged for resale to customer but a product for the salon to use in their services, just in case that wasn't clear in my original post, so I'm not concerned at all about label appeal.

I'm doing some experiments this weekend, so I appreciate the starting points.
 

Obsidian

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Lol, scrub wouldn't do anything to my feet either. 40+ years of mostly being bare foot does that.
If you find something that works, let me know.
 
A

amd

If you find something that works, let me know.
Fine ground pumice is working great for fixing my cracked heels - I use it in a foaming bath base about once a week. I don't think there's anything to do about the toughness of my feet though - I spend most of my summers barefoot as much as possible even as an adult. I'm pretty sure as a child I was one of those bumpkin kids that only wore shoes during the school year. I don't remember having "summer shoes" lol. I've been using foot lotion consistently since August (2-3 times a week now, when I first started it was daily for about a month before I got bored) and even that hasn't changed the texture. At least now though I don't shred my hubby's legs with my cracked heels.
 

dibbles

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How about using turbinado sugar? It is more coarse than regular granulated sugar. Also Kerasal foot repair ointment helps with the leather feet - I have them and when I am consistent with using that, it does seem to help.
 

Obsidian

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Fine ground pumice is working great for fixing my cracked heels - I use it in a foaming bath base about once a week. I don't think there's anything to do about the toughness of my feet though - I spend most of my summers barefoot as much as possible even as an adult. I'm pretty sure as a child I was one of those bumpkin kids that only wore shoes during the school year. I don't remember having "summer shoes" lol. I've been using foot lotion consistently since August (2-3 times a week now, when I first started it was daily for about a month before I got bored) and even that hasn't changed the texture. At least now though I don't shred my hubby's legs with my cracked heels.

I've tried pumice stones and even one of those battery powered grinders, the callous on my heels is too tough.
The only thing that works is a microplaner, the kind designed for kitchen use. If I use it a few times a week, I can eventually get most removed. I just have to stay on top of it.

I did find one foot peel treatment that works ok. It doesn't touch my heels but it helps the rest
 

earlene

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Reformulating your foot scrub might defeat the intent of the shop to replace the scrub they are currently using with your pumice containing scrub. Perhaps discussing your concerns about their plumbing would be in order, but probably you should come in with one or two alternatives to the pumice and give the owner 3 options to choose from: your pumice scrub, a sugar scrub, and another salt scrub. But if they already are using a salt scrub, the owner may not want to replace one salt scrub with another one, unless yours is really superior and also cost effective.

Good luck with your formulations and the presentation when it happens.
 
A

amd

I made a couple test batches over the long weekend. I increased the sugar/salt content of the recipe from 60% to 75%. The first thing I noticed was that at this volume of exfoliant, the bath base doesn't whip up as well (which isn't a concern as I'm selling by weight not volume anyways, but just wanted to note it if anyone is following along for their own experimentation). I tested the scrubs in a foot bath, like they would be used at the spa, over several days.

Batch 1: regular granulated sugar
As I expected, the sugar dissolved far too quickly to get any good scrubbing action. My feet didn't really feel exfoliated, just clean and soft.

Batch 2: 50/50 granulated sugar and raw sugar
This sugar mix held up a bit better, I suspect because the raw sugar is a bit larger sized grain. Better exfoliation, but still not a "fresh from the salon" scrub.

Batch 3: Canning and pickling salt
I liked this one the best, it's comparable to the pumice in that I could work it around my feet for as long as I wanted without losing exfoliation. It got bonus points for softening the water. It lost a few points for lack of lather, which I suspected it would, but I still felt like my feet were clean so lather isn't everything with this scrub.

I haven't delved into the pricing part of this project yet. I'll also look at some other salts to see if there's better pricing (canning salt runs around $0.62/lb sourced locally, but I think I could find an equivalent in bulk.) I did some digging around on the internet and the sources I found for this type of scrub I doubt I'll be able to beat the price, which I think is one of the salon's needs. I'll know for sure when the salon gets back to me with the qty and price of what they're currently buying.

On the flipside, I did enjoy tinkering with this little project and think I might be in love with salt scrub. I tried it on my face last night and liked that better than my apricot seed scrub, although I may do another test batch to take the salt amount down a notch.
 

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