Full of beans: the 5 coffee beauty products to try
We consume 95 million cups of coffee per day in the UK, but the dark side to our latte lives is three billion disposable cups per year, of which a negligible proportion is recycled. That was partially solved by re-useable cups, but they don’t automatically make your daily grind zero waste.
Cosmetic scientist Monty Ashley-Craig started sustainable beauty brand MONTAMONTA, making small batches of hand wash and balms for East London bars and restaurants, including Ozone Coffee. “I discovered spent grounds are a great exfoliant,” says Monty. “Now, we source used grounds from coffee shops and restaurants close to our lab, to utilise materials that would usually go to waste.”
Monty mixes the organic coffee grounds with coconut and sweet almond oils, natural sea salt, vitamin E and botanical extracts such as sage, lemongrass and grapefruit, to create natural body scrubs.
FACE THE FACTS
For their Cup O’ Coffee face and body mask, Lush use organic, rain-fed Fairtrade coffee from a cooperative in Tanzania. From this, they make a cold coffee infusion and blend it with organic agave syrup, roasted cocoa extract and vanilla. You’d be forgiven for wanting to eat it.
Beyond its exfoliating properties, coffee has other beauty benefits. According to top facialist Su-Man Hsu, it “contains multiple antioxidants to neutralise free radicals and prevent stress; reduces water retention, cellulite and redness; removes dead cells, brightens the skin and gives it a glow.”
Su-Man would know: her coffee-fuelled Exfoliating Facial Polish is like an espresso shot for the face. “Caffeine has the ability to drain excess fluid from tissue, so when you apply it, it gives your skin an instant lift and firm feeling,” she says.
Of course, it’s easy (and a lot cheaper) to make your own coffee-centric beauty products. Aussie-based Rocket scientist, and author of A Zero Waste Life, Anita Vandyke, has a simple recipe for a homemade scrub: mix 225g of coffee grounds with 125ml of olive oil and five tbsp of coconut oil.
This should last up to two months. Anita also suggests making it in larger batches for gifting – so you get smooth skin and get ahead with festive prep at the same time.