On June 28, three tables were set up at the back of Northside Library’s community room. Coconut oil and baby oil filled one table, citrus fruits and tea leaves were on another and on the last table, bags of brown sugar and granulated white sugar. The ingredient stations were prepped for the library’s monthly Art After Dark program, a crafts workshop for adults. Sugar scrubs, a bath product known to help exfoliate and soften the skin, were the DIY (Do It Yourself) project of the night
“Art After Dark is geared toward getting adults together to socialize and be creative,” says Angela Ocana, librarian. “Art After Dark brings in a lot of DIY techniques. So it’s not just limited to art but also to things you can do around the home, more akin to what you can find on Etsy. (Etsy is a homemade product sale site.) Tonight we’re making sugar scrubs. You could make coconut brown sugar scrubs, vanilla sugar scrubs or a citrus scrub as well.”
Ocana walked attendees through how to make sugar scrubs. The recipe came with mixing similar amounts of oil and sugar together in a bowl and stirring in fragrance. The fragrance could either come from the zested citrus peel of fruits, vanilla extract or bits of tea leaves. Ocana suggested pairing white sugar with citrus and brown sugar with coconut oil.
Samantha Hoang, library assistant, worked with Ocana during the program
“Sugar scrubs are good for scrubbing off dead skin cells so you can use this scrub for calluses on the feet or dry elbows,” Hoang says. “The scrub can make for a smoother shave so it’s good to apply this before you shave. Scrubbing at the legs can prevent ingrown hairs. You don’t want to put this on your face though because the oils are too heavy.”
Ana Araujo attended the program with three other friends for a ladies night out.
“I made a coconut white sugar scrub with orange spice tea,” says Araujo, mixing her jarred sugar scrubs with a plastic fork. “This was very easy to make and it’ll be easy to do at home. I’m going to use this scrub for myself.”
Amee Fujikawa thinks that sugar scrubs can make great gifts. She comments on the sweet fragrance of her scrub, made with brown sugar, baby oil and chamomile tea.
“I’ve attended a workshop here where I painted a mug with water color as well as another Art After Dark program where I made miniature charms with clay,” Fujikawa says. “I like coming here because I always come with friends. The library puts on these great programs for the community and they’re free.”
“Next month, we’re making scratch CDs, which are CDs painted with black acrylic on one side so guests can etch a design onto the CD,” Ocana says, planning ahead for future Art After Dark programs. “Another month, we will be making floating plant holders.”