Have you heard of dry skin brushing?
It’s exactly what it sounds like. Typically, you brush your skin with a dry, natural bristle brush. Neither the brush nor your skin is wet, therefore it is known as dry brushing. I’ve been dry brushing my entire adult life. To be honest, there are periods where I don’t brush and other periods that I’m super diligent. I can say that in the phases that I do brush my body I notice an improvement in skin texture, colour and smoothness. Above all, it ensures I spend a few minutes each morning practising self-care.
I find dry skin brushing to have incredible health and skin benefits.
Skin is the largest elimination organ of the body. It acts a supplemental filter to the kidneys for removing waste to the blood. When other organs are congested, the skin steps in and pushes out toxins. Did you know it excretes about 1 pound (500g) of toxins a day? Using a dry natural bristle brush smoothes and softens the skin by sloughing away dead flaky cells. At a deeper level, it stimulates the blood circulation, giving skin a healthy pink glow. Firm, sweeping strokes boost the flow of lymph, carrying excess fluid away from the tissues.
Benefits of dry skin brushing:
- Exfoliation – I find that brushing with a firm natural bristle brush sloughs away the dead skin cells leaving my skin smooth and glowing. After a few days, I notice the difference in skin texture and moisture.
- Lymphatic stimulation – there are mixed feelings about whether dry brushing improves lymphatic stimulation. I believe it helps because many of the lymph vessels run just below the surface of the skin. The lymphatic system doesn’t have its own pump. It relies on movement and muscle contraction. Daily brushing may help stimulate the smaller surface vessels and in turn stimulate general lymphatic flow.
- Energy boost – Who doesn’t enjoy a morning energy boost? Dry brushing increases circulation. This leaves me with a general feeling of wellbeing. For this reason, I prefer brushing in the morning.
- Reduction in cellulite – There isn’t enough evidence to show that dry skin brushing actually reduces cellulite. Yet, I have found that when I brush regularly, my skin appears smoother and firmer.
- Self-care and general wellbeing – Slowing down and taking time to treat my body and nourish my mind is an important part of my morning ritual. Some days include a lovely long session of dry brushing and other days I need something else for wellbeing like a lovely bath. Dry brushing 2-3 times a week can generate general wellbeing.
How I perform dry skin brushing:
- I like to start at the soles of my feet and work my upward toward the heart.
- Then I brush my legs in long sweeping strokes toward the back of the knees and then the groin. Your lymph glands are in all the creases of your body like behind the knees, groin, armpits and elbows.
- I brush my buttocks outwards and around to the groin area.
- The stomach is sensitive and use my softer brush on this area. The digestive system works clockwise, so I brush in the same direction. Up the right side across to the left and down the left side.
- I use the same gentler brush on my breasts brushing from the center outwards toward the armpits. It’s okay to have one brush and use gentle pressure on the softer areas.
- I brush the neck very gently in downward strokes toward the heart and collarbone area.
- Then I brush my back using upwards and outwards strokes. I end my torso off by brushing up my sides from hips to underarms.
- Lastly, I brush the palms of my hands, my lower arms into the elbow crease and the upper arms into the armpits.
- Sometimes I use essential oils to enhance the benefits. Place 1-2 drops of essential oils in the palm of your hand. Rub the brush over your palm to pick up the oils. As you brush your skin it will pick up tiny molecules of the essential oils.
How to select a brush and look after it
- When buying a body brush, look for brushes with coarse, short bristles made from natural fibre such as cactus or coconut.
- Keep your brush clean. For hygiene reasons, it’s important to have your own brush and not share it with others. Keep your brush in a dry clean place. Wash it with a natural soap, and disinfect it once a week with a natural disinfecting spray.
Is dry skin brushing for you?
If you have sensitive, inflamed or broken skin then don’t recommend dry skin brushing. For those of you who don’t have any major skin concerns, it’s up to you to try dry skin brushing and see how it works for you. If you do try it, please give it a few weeks of consistency before drawing your own conclusion. As always, this is not medical advice I recommend you consult your medical practitioner.
What is your favorite self-care practice?
Comment below and let me know! Let’s share the message about the importance of prioritising your own health and body.