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How to make your own face mask from coffee grounds

Did you know you can use leftover coffee grounds to make a face mask? Planet Patrol team member Lucy has been trying out a few recipes. Here she shares her favourite recipes for DIY face masks and body scrubs that boost your skin and give ‘waste’ a new life! Just because it’s waste, doesn’t mean it has to be wasted!

Coffee is packed full of antioxidants, which fight against free radicals in your body. Free radicals are basically molecules with unpaired electrons, which steal electrons from other molecules. They are linked to diabetes, heart disease, cancer and other illnesses, but antioxidants – naturally found in coffee – can help fight these. Who knew your favourite morning pick-me-up had all of these benefits?

Coffee beans

Coffee is also gaining a bit of a reputation on the beauty scene, for the benefits coffee is thought to have for your skin. These include:

  • Anti-ageing effects – reducing fine lines, sun spots and redness
  • Reduced inflammation – due to the chlorogenic acids (CGAs) found in coffee
  • Increases circulation – helps to give smooth, glowing skin
  • Acne fighting – the combination of CGAs (which have anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties) and the natural exfoliation from coffee grounds collectively work to fight acne.
  • Combats dark circles – a result of coffee’s caffeine content, which helps dilate blood vessels that can contribute to dark circles under the eyes.

First things first…

What do we mean by coffee grounds? 

To drink coffee, we need to grind up coffee beans into much smaller, almost powder-like pieces. This is what you buy from supermarkets or coffee shops to use in a cafetiere, and what we’re referring to when we say coffee grounds. Most people will dispose of these after they’ve been used to make a cup of coffee, but that doesn’t need to be the case!

Once you’ve finished using your coffee grounds for coffee-drinking purposes, drain as much of the liquid as possible and transfer the grounds to a large, sealed container (tupperware or a glass jar/bowl is fine). Keep these in a cool place, and try to use them within a week or so to make your face masks/scrubs.

We’ve got a few different DIY coffee face mask recipes for you to try at home, and we’ve stuck to the super straight-forward (but still just as effective) ones to get your started!

Basic Coffee Face Scrub

The Everyday Favourite

You will need:

  • 1 teaspoon coffee grounds
  • 1 teaspoon oil (we prefer coconut or olive)
  • A drop of water


Literally just mix your ingredients together in a small bowl until well combined, and apply to clean skin. Massage gently for a minute or two for exfoliation, and then either rinse off or leave for 10-15 minutes for extra silky smoothness!

Top tip: this recipe is also great for dark circles under your eyes. Make your mixture the same way but mixing in the palm of your hand rather than a bowl. Massage the mixture SUPER gently onto the skin below your eyes. Leave for 10-15 minutes and then wipe off with a damp cloth. Ciao dark circles, and helloooo beautiful radiant skin!

2-Ingredient Softening Face Mask

The Super Softy

This mask is sure to get your skin feeling super soft and looking silky smooth.

You will need:

  • ¼ cup/60g Greek yoghurt (can use non-dairy alternatives if preferred – we love coconut or oat)
  • 2 teaspoons ground coffee


Mix both ingredients together well and apply to clean, dry skin. Massage for 2-3 minutes (but be gentle!) and then leave for 15 minutes to harden. Rinse well with warm water and pat dry.

Rejuvenating Face Mask

For the Over-worker

Feeling a little jaded after a long week? Use this face mask to wake up tired skin and get your glow back!

You will need:

  • 1 tablespoon coffee grounds
  • 2 tablespoons ground oats
  • 1 tablespoon honey


Combine your ingredients in a small bowl and mix together thoroughly. Apply to clean, dry skin and massage in gently. Leave for 20 minutes and then wash off with warm water.

Chocolate Coffee Face Mask

The Chocoholics Favourite

The ultimate treat yo’self, weekend face mask (or mid-week, we’re never one to judge when it comes to eco-conscious self care!)

You will need:

  • 1 tablespoon cacao powder (try to use raw or organic for best results)
  • 1 tablespoon coffee grounds
  • 1 ½ tablespoons coconut yoghurt
  • 2 drop lavender essential oil (not essential, but a nice little extra)


Combine all ingredients in a small bowl/pot and mix well. Apply to clean, dry skin and leave for 15-20 minutes to harden. Rinse with warm water and a damp washcloth.

Exfoliating Body Scrub

The Full-Body Experience

Sometimes, just a face mask isn’t enough; the rest of your body needs a little TLC too, and this coffee body scrub will do wonders for your skin!

You will need:

  • 1 cup/60g coffee grounds
  • 1 ½ tablespoons oil (olive or coconut are our faves)
  • Green tea leaves (approximately 1-2 teabags worth)


Mix ingredients together and rub over your body in gentle, circular motions. Concentrate on rougher areas, such as your elbows, knees and heels to get them feeling silky smooth. Rinse off, pat yourself dry and moisturise. 

Storing your coffee face masks and scrubs

Once you’ve had a go at making these recipes, you can store any leftovers in a small jar or container (maybe a jam jar or an old moisturiser pot) so you’ve got some pre-made and ready for your next pamper session! If the mask or scrub contains ingredients you’d normally keep in the fridge (e.g. yoghurt, milk), make sure to store it in the fridge and try to use it within 3-4 days. Otherwise, for those made with oils/oats/other ingredients you’d usually store at room temperature, they’re best kept in cool places, out of direct sunlight – in a bathroom cupboard or make-up counter works perfectly.

Inspired? Check out our other blogs on plastic-free snacks and plastic-free lunches!

By Lucy McDermott









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