It might be hard to tell sugar and salt apart when they’re sitting side by side, but when they’re used in body scrubs, you can generally tell the difference right away. Both sugar and salt scrubs are great exfoliators—the coarse grains help slough off dead cells on the skin’s top layer to reveal the rejuvenated, glowing skin underneath.
But each has its own unique benefits, too. Salt, for example—especially extra-coarse sea salt—is more abrasive than sugar, so it’s especially effective on trouble spots, like your heels and elbows. Salt is also good for acne-prone skin, since it absorbs oil well.
Sugar scrubs are gentler on the skin than salt scrubs. Sugar dissolves in warm water a little better than salt does, so it’s easier on sensitive skin.