Ayurvedic Body Scrubs (Salt + Sugar Scrubs), Ubtan Recipes + Udvartana Powder Recipes

Ayurvedic Body Scrubs (Salt + Sugar Scrubs), Ubtan Recipes + Udvartana Powder Recipes

The Ayurveda Experience June 02, 2018

Udvarthana (Udvarthanam or Udvartana) is a massage therapy involving a body scrub or ubtan, the traditional Indian body paste of natural herbs and grains. In this article, we’ll share some ubtan recipes (Ayurvedic body scrubs) with you, including easy-to-make salt scrubs and sugar scrubs as well as traditional Udvartana powder recipes which you can make at home.

Udvartana (Udwarthana): Ayurvedic Dry Massage
Body Scrub Exfoliation
Kapha Body Scrubs For Weight Loss
Pitta Body Scrubs For Weight Loss
Utsadan Recipe (Oily Powder Massage)
Your Basic Exfoliating Body Scrub Recipe
Coffee Scrub
Coffee Salt Scrub Recipe
All About Salt Scrubs
All About Sugar Scrubs
Rice Powder Facial Scrub
Red Lentil Facial Scrub
Oatmeal Facial Scrub
9 Body Scrub Benefits (Udvartana Benefits)

READ MORE: 16 Morning Routine Ideas From Ayurvedic Medicine, Ayurvedic Dry Powder Massage: Everything You Need To Know About Udwarthana (Udwarthanam), Everything You Need To Know About Shirodhara

A woman with a facial mask. Salt scrub, salt scrubs, sugar scrub, sugar scrubs, body scrub, body scrubs, udwarthana powder recipe, udvartana powder recipe.

Udvartana (Udwarthana): Ayurvedic Dry Massage

Udvarthana (Udvartana) is a systematized sequence of massage strokes using an herbal powder. The strokes are performed in an upward movement or, in elevation. Udvarthana (Udvartana) is a significant therapy on its own and is included under the Ayurvedic daily routine we call Dinacharya.

According to the Ayurvedic sage Vagbhata,massaging the body with a soft fragrant powder mitigates Kapha dosha, liquefies fat, produces stability (compactness and strength) of the body parts and excellence of the skin.1

Depending on the purpose of the powder massage, Udvarthana (Udvartana) can be dry, called ruksha, or oily, called snigdha. Utgharshanam is mentioned by Sushruta. It is predominantly dry massage. Utsadan is predominantly an unctuous or oily procedure, wherein an herbal powder is mixed with an unctuous substance like oils or ghee.

READ MORE: Easy 4 Step Ayurvedic Weight Loss Plan + Home Remedies For Over Weight, Kapha Diet: Everything You Need To Know

Body Scrub Exfoliation

Udvarthana can be correlated with exfoliation or a body scrub. Exfoliation should always be a part of your skin care routine. It helps unclog your pores, sloughs off dull skin, balances sebum production and evens out your complexion. Exfoliation keeps the skin healthy, young-looking and glowing. While we know that facial exfoliation is part of our regular beauty routine, a body scrub provides a variety of benefits, from helping our moisturizer absorb better to increased relaxation.

The benefits of a regular body scrub include relaxation, detoxification and more. Exfoliation smooths your skin and prevents breakouts. It keeps your skin oil-free and young looking.

Some of the best homemade Ayurvedic scrubs are listed below. Look around your kitchen and see which of these ingredients you can find. Start exfoliating now to reap the benefits throughout all of your life!

Kapha Body Scrub For Weight Loss

In Ayurvedic practices, herbs used for exfoliation for Kapha body types and for weight loss include the following.

Triphala powder has the property to reduce body weight. It can be used internally, taken orally to lose weight. It is also beneficial for reducing cellulite if used externally on the body in an herbal powder massage.2

READ MORE: Triphala For Weight Loss, Can You Take Ashwagandha And Triphala Together?, Can Triphala Cause Acid Reflux?

Rose petals. Body scrub, body scrubs, salt scrub, salt scrubs, sugar scrub, sugar scrubs, ubtan recipe, udvartana powder recipe, udwarthana powder recipe.

Pitta Body Scrub For Weight Loss

If your body is Pitta, you can use the following massage powder. All ingredients should be used in a finely powdered form.

  1. Cyperus Rotundus or Nagarmotha–50%
  2. Barley or Yava Churna–20%
  3. Emblica officinalis or Amalaki–15%
  4. Valeriana Wallichii or Indian Valerian–5%
  5. Terminalia Chebula or Haritaki—5%
  6. Centella Asiatica or Gotu Kola–5%

Mix all ingredients together in the provided ratio. This powder massage can be used in Pitta type bodies for weight loss benefits.

READ MORE: Pitta Diet: Everything You Need To Know, Easy 4 Step Ayurvedic Weight Loss Plan + Home Remedies For Over Weight

Utsadan Recipe (Oily Powder Massage)

This herbal formula supports glowing skin in Pitta types.

  1. Emblica officinalis or Amalaki—15%
  2. Licorice or Yashtimadhu–15%
  3. Rose petal-15%
  4. Neem—–10%
  5. Sariva–10%
  6. Sandalwood-10%
  7. Ushir—10%
  8. Turmeric or Haldi–5%

Mix all the ingredients in the above given ratio and massage onto the skin. This mixture should be used withChandanadi oil (sandalwood massage oil) or Kesaradi Oil for maximum glowing effects on the skin.

Your Basic Exfoliating Body Scrub Recipe

Getting pampered is everyone’s dream come true, but going to a spa is not always in the budget. If you want to experience that cozy spa feeling at home, treat yourself to one of the following recipes.

Here are a few body scrub recipes from Ayurveda including an Ayurvedic salt scrub recipe, Ayurvedic sugar scrub recipe and a ground coffee scrub recipe. You can easily make these home. They’re simple and fun to make, and you can be creative with herbs and essential oils.

Both salt and sugar scrubs exfoliate the skin wonderfully, helping to get rid of that upper layer of dead skin cells, leaving behind glowing, beautiful skin. Salt and sugar scrubs also help out with circulation to the skin. When you are scrubbing your skin, it improves the blood circulation to the skin, leaving it oxygenated, rosy and feeling wonderful.

READ MORE: Ayurvedic Dry Powder Massage: Everything You Need To Know About Udvarthana (Udvarthanam), Everything You Need To Know About Shirodhara

Basic Exfoliating Body Scrub Recipe

1. Measure out two cups of salt, sugar or both.
2. Measure out 1 cup, 1/2 cup or even 1/4 cup of base oil (coconut, olive, almond, grapeseed or you can go oil-free). Choose organic and non-GMO if you can, and avoid hydrogenated oils and oil blends like vegetable and canola.
3. Combine any powdered herbs and essential oils with the sugar, salt or both.
4. Store in a wide mouth jar.

Sugar Scrubs

If you choose to make a Sugar Scrub, then use a natural, organic sugar. Brown sugar is wonderful. Castor sugar can also be used as the exfoliator combined with a nourishing carrier oil. These wonderful formulas can help restore a radiant complexion, visibly improve skin texture and bring clarity to all skin types.

Salt Scrubs

If you choose salt, then you should definitely use a finer ground sea or high mineral content salt. You can use Himalayan salt if you want a beautiful pink color, just be sure it’s finely ground.Avoid iodized table salt. Use a Salt Scrub with a pampering carrier oil to exfoliate the skin. These are best for normal, oily and blemish prone skin types like Pitta skin.

Add Herbs

Grinding herbs into a powder and add them to your scrub to make a lovely variation. There are tons of variations! Choose from brahmi, Indian red lentil paste, green tea, coffee, rose, Turmeric, rice powder, chickpea powder (besan), lavender flowers, juniper berries, rosemary, nettle leaves and chamomile flowers. The herbs will add a slight color to your scrub, too. These herbs are wonderful for all skin types, especially for dry, sensitive and mature skin.

Baking soda, clay, ground almonds, pulverized walnut shells and apricot kernel meal polishes away dull, dry skin and promotes circulation. Combined with a carrier oil or butter, they will also hydrate the skin.

Add Essential Oils

If you’re looking for a scented scrub or a scrub that will add additional healthy skin properties, then you should consider using essential oils. Here are are few, along with their properties.

  • Peppermint: refreshing, cooling, and increases circulation
  • Roman Chamomile: soothing, gentle and delicately scented
  • Lavender: great for the skin, mild antiseptic properties
  • Grapefruit: excellent for cellulite, smells heavenly
  • Helichrysum: amazing for the face!

READ MORE: Essential Oils For Marma Chikitsa (Marma Point Massage) + Marma Chikitsa, Herbal Oils For Marma Massage (Marma Chikitsa), Facial Marma Massage: Herbal Oils + Kansa Wand Sequences

Coffee Scrubs

Coffee scrubs are amazing. Here are some coffee scrub benefits.

1. Aromatherapy

The scent of coffee clears your mind of excessive thoughts, working as an antidepressant.

2. Antioxidant

It neutralizes the effects of free radicals and can help prevent premature aging.

3. Exfoliation

A coffee scrub acts as an exfoliator for the skin. Coffee Scrubs can remove residual dirt and dead skin to give you younger looking, fresh skin.

4. Blood Flow

Caffeine found in Coffee Scrubs typically increases blood flow and reduces the appearance of cellulite.

5. Skin Texture

Caffeine makes your skin look firmer.

Coffee is always a good idea!

Coffee Salt Scrub Recipe

1 ½ cup coarse sea salt
1 cup coffee grounds (dried)
1 cup oil, any base oil (coconut oil works well)
5-15 drops of essential oils

Recipe Directions

In a large bowl add coarse sea salt, coffee grounds and stir. Place the base oil and essential oils into a bowl and stir. Store in an airtight jar and use for those days when you need a good scrubbing.

READ MORE: Essential Oils For Marma Chikitsa (Marma Point Massage) + Infographics, 29 Marma Points For Pain Relief

All About Salt Scrubs3

  • Sea salt is usually used in making homemade scrubs, and it contains wonderful minerals that do wonders to your body. Salt scrubs are wonderful for detoxifying your skin and helping to purify the skin as well as keep your skin pores clear.
  • Salt scrubs can be drying to the skin, and you may need to rehydrate pretty intensively after using a salt scrub. They are not good for use on the face or sensitive skin. Salt has sharper edges than sugar granules, and so can really irritate very sensitive skin.
  • Salt scrubs make excellent muscle relaxants, so if you have sore muscles, salt scrubs may be a great help with this.
  • Salt scrubs are awesome for those really tough, calloused areas of your body. Places like the heels, elbows, knees, and even your hands can really benefit from a good salt scrubbing. The sharp little edges on the salt crystals do wonders on tough skin. Just be sure to moisturize well afterwards.

All About Sugar Scrubs

  • Sugar scrubs are wonderful for use on your face. Tthe granules are round and won’t cut or abrade the skin heavily.
  • Sugar scrubs don’t have the mineral benefits that salt scrubs have. However, if you use an organic type of sugar, you will still get some minerals.
  • Sugar scrubs are more moisturizing than salt scrubs. Sugar contains acids that help exfoliate as well as moisturize.
  • You can definitely use sugar scrubs more often than salt scrubs. Even a good daily scrub with a sugar scrub is fine.
  • Sugar dissolves much more quickly than salt does, so your scrub won’t last quite as long as a salt scrub. Therefore, you’ll have to do your business more quickly.

READ MORE: iYura Face + Body Ubtan

Let’s look at some facial scrubs which can be made at home with common kitchen ingredients.

Rice Powder Facial Scrub

A Rice Powder Facial Scrub is a gentle exfoliant that helps to remove the dead cells clogging your pores.4 Baking soda is also a skin exfoliant and at the same time, helps to bring down excess sebum production.5


  • 1 Tbsp ground rice or rice powder 
  • baking soda, one pinch
  • 1 tsp honey


  1. Mix all ingredients together.
  2. Apply the paste to the face and neck, and scrub gently for 2-3 minutes.
  3. Rinse with cool water.

Time Taken To Complete This Process: 5 minutes
Tips And Precautions: None
How Often Should I Use? Repeat this 1-2 times a week.

READ MORE: Rice + Ayurvedic Diet: White Rice, Brown Rice, Types Of Rice, The Doshas

Red Lentil Facial Scrub

The coarseness of the red lentils (masoor dal) will remove the dead skin cells and impurities from your skin. Your skin will become smoother and softer. Turmeric improves the vascular density and circulation under the skin.6 Yogurt controls the oil production.


  • 2 tsp masoor dal powder (red lentil powder)
  • Turmeric, one pinch
  • 1-2 tsp yogurt

How To Use

  1. Add the Turmeric powder to the red lentil powder and mix well.
  2. Now, add the yogurt and mix together.
  3. Scrub your face gently for 2-3 minutes.
  4. Rinse with lukewarm water.

If you don’t have red lentil powder, you can make your own by grinding red lentils in a clean coffee grinder.

READ MORE: Yogurt: Ayurveda Health Benefits + How To Make Homemade Yogurt AND Digestive Lassi Recipe

Oatmeal Facial Scrub


  • 1 Tbsp oatmeal
  • 1 Tbsp yogurt
  • 1 Tbsp honey

Oatmeal is soothing and cleansing for the skin. It contains anti-inflammatory compounds and saponins.7 Yogurt also cleanses the skin and reduces extra sebum production. Along with honey, it keeps the skin moisturized and hydrated.8,9 After regular use of this scrub, you will see a glow on your face, and excess oil will reduce to a great extent.


  1. Mix all ingredients together and apply to the face and neck areas.
  2. Leave it on for ten minutes.
  3. Wet your fingers and start scrubbing in a circular motion. Scrub for 3-4 minutes.
  4. Rinse with cool water.

Time Taken To Complete This Process  18-20 minutes
Tips And Precautions: Use rosewater instead of yogurt in case you are allergic to it.
How Often Should I Use? Repeat the scrub application one to two times a week.

9 Body Scrub Benefits (Udvartana Benefits)

Udvartana or ubtan is an important regimen from Ayurveda’s closet of delicious body treatments. It’s part of Ayurvedic weight management programs, personal hygiene and beautification. Ayurveda recommends it as a daily self care practice to be done regularly at home.

According to the ancient Ayurvedic texts, using ubtan on the face and body helps in the following ways.

  1. It rejuvenates the skin, bringing freshness, imparting shine and enhancing complexion.
  2. It helps mobilize stagnant, morbid meda dhatu (fat tissue) and reduces weight.
  3. It provides stability to body parts.
  4. It alleviates body odor and excessive sweating.
  5. It alleviates heaviness of the body.
  6. It removes drowsiness and instils activeness and freshness in the body.
  7. It soothes itching.
  8. It removes dirt and dust.
  9. It opens up blocked channels and improves vascular circulation as well the circulation of nutrients and other essentials in the body.

1. K. R. Srikantha Murthy, ashtanga hridayam, Sutrasthan, english  translation, Vol 1, Chowkhamba Krishnadas Academy, varanasi(2016), verse-15, pp25
2. Triphala and its constituents ameliorate visceral adiposity from a high-fat diet in mice with diet-induced obesity. Gurjar S1,Pal A,Kapur S.https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23251942
3. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15689218
4. Lindsey P,  Homemade body scrub & masks for beginners, pp 55
5. Shannon Buck, 200 tips,techniques, and recipes for natural beauty
6. Beneficial role of curcumin in skin diseases. Thangapazham RL1,Sharma A,Maheshwari RKhttps://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17569219
7. Colloidal oatmeal: history, chemistry and clinical properties. Kurtz ES1,Wallo Whttps://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17373175
8. Dueep Jyoti Singh, John Davidson, Mendon Cottage books,Healing through Milk and Yogurt: Using Dairy products for natural healing, PP 38
9. Medicinal and cosmetic uses of Bee’s Honey – A review
R. H. S. S. Ediriweera and N. Y. S. Premarathna1 https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3611628/


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