You brush your hair. You brush your teeth. But do you brush your skin?
Dry brushing is, simply put, the act of brushing your skin with a brush in a (very) specific way. While there are a number of benefits, the biggest one is that it's an extremely relaxing and relatively easy tool to add to your wellness regime.
Benefits of Dry Brushing
Exfoliated skin. Exfoliation is often the most visible of the dry brushing benefits. Dry brushing will help loosen up your old, dead skin cells and allow your fresh, soft skin underneath to truly shine. Regularly dry brushing will keep those old flakey skin cells from building up, reducing or even eliminating dry, flaky skin over time.
Cellulite reduction. Many people report that dry brushing helps reduce the look and feel of cellulite on the skin by breaking down fat deposits and making it easier for the body to discard them.
Stimulated lymph vessels. Regularly dry brushing can help stimulate your lymphatic system, as many of your important lymph vessels are running just below the surface of the skin. Good lymphatic drainage also means less inflammation.
Better digestion. Brushing in a clockwise motion on your stomach mimics the path that food takes in the digestive tract. The massage may also help stimulate sluggish digestion.
More energy and improved circulation. Dry brushing can be a great energy boost. It brings the blood to the surface and kick-starts circulation. You might want to make sure you save dry brushing for your morning shower so that you aren’t up all night!
How to Dry Brush Effectively
Dry brushing is not random; in fact, dry brushing needs to be done in a particular pattern. All you need is a clean, natural bristle brush. Preferably one with a long handle so you can reach your back.
Typically, dry brushing is done before you hop in the shower or bath, followed by a moisturizing lotion or oil. But another way is to brush after showering by adding a little oil to the brush (almond or coconut work well) and following the same process. This may be a better option for those who have extremely sensitive skin.
To start, take your dry brush and start at your feet. Always brush in the direction of your heart. Work your way up from your feet to your legs either using smooth upward strokes or small, circular strokes; make sure to brush each section of skin about 10 times, moving towards the center of the body. After your feet, do your hips, stomach, sides, abdomen and back. Lastly, your arms.
Pay special attention to the lymph-heavy areas in your armpits and inner thighs. Remember: you should be using slightly firm strokes, but dry brushing shouldn’t hurt, sting or cause your skin to go red.
Dedicate at least 3-5 minutes to the process.