7 Fantastic Microbead-Free Face Scrubs

The recent discovery that microbeads (those tiny plastic beads found in many face and body scrubs) are polluting our waterways has me seriously reconsidering my beauty products.  Apparently, these seemingly innocent, face-softening little beads are leaving a rather large, not-so-clean mark on our environment. They absorb toxins in the water, posing a threat to the fish that swallow them and, in turn, the entire fish-eating population. Though the Microbead-Free Waters Act of 2015 has been signed into law, it won’t go into full effect for a few years. In the meantime though, there are plenty of brightening and smoothing exfoliants that are just as gentle, without those harmful beads. Here are 7 skin-soothing scrubs, peels, and gommages to help you buff and brighten without the backlash.

The Microdelivery Peel

by Philosophy

Just two steps, this system smooths and brightens skin and reduces the appearance of pores and lines – instantly. The vitamin C paste smells like fresh-squeezed OJ. And its safe for even the most sensitive skin; like mine.


Never a Dull Moment Face Polisher

by Origins

Instead of environmentally unfriendly microbeads, this scrub uses finely ground apricot seeds, mango seeds, and papaya extract to slough off dead skin.

Age Reform AHA/BHA Exfoliating Cleanser

by Murad

This intensive cleanser polishes away dullness and impurities with three exfoliating agents—Salicylic Acid, Lactic Acid, and Glycolic Acid—and Jojoba beads revealing a smoother, younger-looking complexion. My facialist swears by it.


Exfoliating Treatment Cleanser

by BareMinerals

Instead of a typical scrub, this is a water-activated powder that helps unclog pores.

Metamorphosis Powder

by Sephora Collection

Sephora Collection’s powder exfoliant lightly scrubs with microcellulose (plant powder). Salicylic acid and papaya extract act as a gentle chemical peel for soft and radiant skin.


Almond and Honey Scrub

by Mario Badescu

Ground almonds and cornmeal are the exfoliants in this face scrub. But I don’t suggest eating this for breakfast.

Citrus Facial Polish

by Burt’s Bees

In it’s adorable looking tub, this tried-and-true facial scrub is a steal at eight bucks and gets its grit from ground nuts and oats.

Do you have other microbead-free face scrubs that you swear by? Be sure to share below!

Amy Johnson

is UDR’s budding social media guru, and has been instrumental in constructing the brand’s content strategy. After graduating from University of Colorado- Boulder, she started working for UDR as a marketing intern. When she isn’t perusing the web for the perfect pins and Facebook posts, she can be found hiking somewhere with her dog Rory.

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