DIY Polymer Clay Salt Scrub Hand Soap for Your Studio

Posted on 27 Comments
DIY Salt Scrub Recipe for Polymer Clay Artists & Crafters - Less Than $1 per Jar on - Repin Now, Make Later

It’s no secret that I love a good DIY project.  What’s also no secret is that if I can make it myself better, more simply, and more cost-effective, I’ll likely do it.  So for my polymer clay tip today, I have decided to share my recipe for my super-easy hand scrub to keep your hands from becoming clay stained and a super quick washing solution between colors.  This recipe using things you likely have already in your kitchen, as well as a recycled baby jar (thank heavens for my friends who keep me supplied with them).


Have you ever finished a project and washed your hands with soap and water and gone “ew!” because there was yucky clay scum left behind?  Well, I have!  And it is because of this that I decided to make my own salt scrub.  Please note that this is a super simple version of a fancier version (that calls for scented oils, specialty moisturizing oils, etc).  Some versions call for sugar instead of salt, but my studio is downstairs and sugar tends to attract ants, especially when I leave the lid off the jar, which is often … therefore I use salt, which doesn’t attract bugs and in emergencies can be used on slugs … although I’ve never had any of those in my basement … moving on!


For most of my readers, you have already mentally checked these things off in your head because you have them at your house.  Please know that you can use any kind of oil [even vegetable oil or coconut oil]; I prefer EVOO because it leaves my hands nice and softie-soft!  You can use any kind of dishwashing or hand soap.  I prefer Dawn as my choice for dishwashing soap for its awesome cleaning power, but you can use any soap.  The reason that there are no added “scents” to my recipe is that my dish soap is already scented … I mean why should I ruin that awesome Thai Dragon Fruit smell that Dawn has given me?  PS: If you haven’t tried this scent yet, you should … it’s my favorite.

EDITOR’S NOTE: Thai Dragon Fruit Scent has been discontinued as of 2018.


DIY Salt Scrub Recipe for Polymer Clay Artists & Crafters - Less Than $1 per Jar on - Repin Now, Make Later

Here’s the easy part.  This recipe is for a SMALL jar (approximately 2.5 oz), you will need to tailor this recipe to fit your jar.

  • 1 Tbs. EVOO
  • 1 Tbs. Dish Liquid
  • 1/4 cup salt

All you need to do is stir it all together inside your jar!  And then wah-lah! You have an awesome homemade, ultra-cheap, DIY salt scrub that you can use to get all those clay bits off of your hands once and for all.


You want this mixture to be semi-dry.  The salt should stick together, but it should be loose, but still able to be packed.  If there is oil or soap “floating” in spots in your mixture, keep stirring.  If there is still oil or soap in there, add more salt until it is all absorbed.  Feel free to keep a spoon next to your mixture, just so that between washings of your hands, you can stir your mix so the oil & soap don’t settle to the bottom.  I also tend to “shake” my bottle before I use it.  This also helps to keep it nicely mixed.

Sculpting Blessings,


27 thoughts on “DIY Polymer Clay Salt Scrub Hand Soap for Your Studio

  1. I’m a little confused because dishwashing liquid is formulated to cut through grease. Doesn’t it … I dunno, wreck the oil? Dissolve it, I guess is the term I’m looking for. It seems as if you’re hoping to mix oil and soap and have a resulting oil/soap mixture, but wouldn’t the soap wreck the oil? What exactly does the resulting mixture look like?

    I’ve seen the video of oil being washed off ducks using Dawn, and the ducks come out all squeaky clean (or quacky clean, I guess), so I’m really confused as to how the oil survives this mixture. I’d be grateful if someone’d explain how I’m being a bonehead about this! Thanks very much.

    1. You’re making a scrub, not a liquid. The soap does nothing to the oil. Trust me, this works.

  2. Thanks for the tip, and also to gal with vitamin E oil tip!!!

  3. My apologies if someone already asked this (I tried looking for thru the comments, but didnt see anything like it). Can you substitute coconut oil for the olive oil? It smells better and is supposed to be good for you skin as well.

    1. Yes you can. Just be sure it’s melted when you mix it so it combines thoroughly.

      1. Awesome thanks!

  4. Hi I saw this blog tweeted a little while ago, I replied but thought I’d also reply here.
    You should try Vitamin E oil.
    Just a pea sized drop, massage in, wipe off w/ paper towel. It removes ALL colors and leaves no stain + GREAT for skin.
    No washing (w/ soap & water) required between colors.
    I keep a small bottle of E oil and paper towels (or napkins) beside my work table and I never transfer color to color.
    Also, CHEAP paper towels work best because they have more of a paper vs cloth texture… so no lint or fuzzies sticking to your hands.
    Hope you’ll try it + its GREAT for your skin.

    1. Thanks Ann – I will try it.

  5. Just used up my first batch of this. Came to get the recipe again as it got lost in the maze of my 50 year old brain. LOL Thank you for this recipe. It not only gets the clay scum off my hands, but it’s helping with the already itchy, winter dry skin.

    1. I’m so glad that you like it Denine!

  6. Finally tried it today and it’s awesome!!!! way better than scrubbing with soap

  7. My first attempt all thanks to you. I made 4 crochet hook handles & 2 knitting needle bead tops. I’m soooooo proud. And they didn’t burn or get mis-shapen. For all the things I read could go wrong…it went perfectly well. 🙂 I wish I cold send you a picture.

    1. Good for you! Way to go! You can always post pictures on my FaceBook page Diane.

  8. I’ve been making a similar scrub with sea salt for years. I also make one with sugar. Before I decided to put it in a jar, I would have the ingredients in individual containers. Then I would pour the oil on my hands, then the salt or sugar. Rub my hands. Then add the soap. Add water & rinse. Now I just scoop the mixture out of the jar & scrub away.

  9. Thanks. I have an expensive lavender sugar scrub that I got as a gift 5 years ago. I have been rationing it out. and now its gone. Nice container, and I have some lovely lavender scented hand soap. I will use it to make this.

  10. AWESOME, Katie!! I have been wondering how the heck to get that clay off my hands!! 😛 Thank you so much!!!!!

    1. You so very welcome! It’s an older post, but it’s great information that everyone should know & use. It makes fantastic gifts too!

  11. What a great scrub, I love it. I’m covering jars with polymer to give this scrub as gifts to claying friends.

    1. I’m so glad you like it! I made one big jar and it lasts me several months. Great gifts for your guild too!

  12. Katie..thankyou for sharing. I am going to try this.

  13. I love this! I’ve been doing this for a few weeks now and love how clean it gets my hands… thanks so much for sharing! 🙂

    1. I’m so glad you like it! I love how “soft” my hands feel after several days in the studio. It helps rejuvenate skin too!

  14. Thank you so much!!

  15. Thanks for this awesome recipe! I have been rubbing corn oil based paint cleaner on my palms and wiping them on a rag before washing them with soap. But your salt scrub sounds like it’ll be much more effective and easy.

  16. Katie you are too funny, clay-free slugs… I’d say ‘yuck’ but they like to slither under my door after it rains…

    Great tip though. I usually rub my skin raw so I think my hands will really appreciate this recipe. Simple, easy and oh so potentially useful

    Thank you 🙂

    1. Yeah – I have YET to have a slug in my basement…but you never know, seeing as I live in the woods. Stranger things have happened!

  17. Thank you so much for sharing this DIY Scrub with us!! I have a brush that I use, but this is a GREAT idea, I will definitely try it!

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