Buffing your skin into submission with a hard-bristled brush?
Seriously, it sounds like something you’d do to My Little Pony, not to your skin… right?
Well, before you give it the complete brush-off, read on.
Once you understand the benefits of dry brushing, you’ll soon have your clothes in one hand and a scrubber in the other.
First, the skin science
Cast your mind back to your biology class and answer these questions:
- what is the largest organ on your body, responsible for 10 to 15% of total elimination?
- what organ receives a third of all the blood circulating in your body?
- if toxins are circulating in your blood, which organ lets you know there is a problem?
- which of your organs is the last to receive nutrients, yet the first to show signs of imbalance or deficiency?
Why, your skin, of course! It is a major organ on your body as much as your heart, lungs, liver, and kidneys are, and its primary function includes respiration, excretion, circulation, the movement of lymph and immunity,
In Chinese medicine, the skin is so important that it’s referred to as the third kidney that conducts vital Chi.
If you are keen to learn more exciting facts about your skin, follow the link to find out about 20 of them.
A brief history of skin brushing
Throughout the centuries, weird and wonderful dry brushing techniques have been practised.
In ancient Greece, athletes used strigils, specialised spoon-like skin scrapers to remove sweat and encourage circulation. Not to mention the Cherokee Indians, who would brush their bodies with dried corn cobs to enhance the health of their skin.
And did you know animals Do It to themself!
Higher land animals, especially wild boars, and deer, in free nature, are in the habit of lying down in small muddy swamps and pools and rubbing to and fro in the mud and after a while, they rub themselves against the earth, trees and other objects.
The birds go to brooks or springs, and, by immersing their necks, throw water over their bodies…then they rub or scrub their body using their head, bill, and wing elbows.
But stop, don’t panic! We’re not suggesting you resort to rolling around in the mud or standing in a field beating yourself with corn cobs or spoons, for that matter, because a simple bristled brush will suffice.
Dry Brushing is a Powerful Elimination Tool
Your skin is a living, breathing organ exposed to hundreds of pollutants every day, and just like every other major organ, it requires daily cleansing and nutrients.
We recommend to our clients to body brush; it’s a lost art in some respects, but it is a wonderful exfoliator and detoxifier.
Infact. We will be the first to admit that the more we learn about dry brushing benefits, the more we become genuinely amazed at what a powerful elimination tool for the lymphatic system it is.
- it’s a natural exfoliator
- it stimulates your blood circulation
- it can help to remove any ingrown hairs you may have
- it helps to increase nerve function throughout your body
- it allows for better absorption of your skincare products
- it can improve circulation in areas of greatest fat concentration, thus helping to rebalance the fat distribution
- it can stimulate a sluggish lymphatic system, removing toxins from your body where waste products accumulate
So does dry brushing work? it sure does and has a heap of benefits, as you can see.
The Importance of Your Lymphatic System
This system is composed of lymph vessels, lymph nodes, and organs.
The lymph nodes are required by your body’s defence system, helping to remove microorganisms and other foreign substances; they act like tiny filtration systems that keep harmful bacteria from entering your bloodstream.
You can stimulate your lymphatic system through dry skin brushing, which helps to activate waste removal through your lymph nodes. Follow the link to learn more about lymph and detox.
If you are keen to understand how it can boost your lymph drainage and how to dry brush, the following video is worth watching:
What is the Best Technique to Use?
Use a soft, natural-bristle brush and use small, firm strokes.
Ideally, you want to do it before you get in the shower, preferably first thing in the morning, to boost sluggish lymph.
Doing it yourself is a simple technique; use light strokes in an upward motion.
- if you begin at your feet and move up towards your heart, which will help with blood circulation.
- if you start on your hands, work up your arms.
- for your stomach, work in a clockwise direction with circular motions.
Any brushing or exfoliation should be gentle and never break your skin, although you may see some redness, which means you are stimulating your circulation.
If you are struggling with weight or fluid retention, we recommend using a few drops of detoxifying essential oils in a light oil such as almond or olive oil; this will help to boost your circulation and encourage detoxification.
A great blend to use as part of your dry brushing routine would be lemon, fennel, juniper, black pepper, cypress, and thyme.
To Conclude, The naked truth.
Topical treatment with skin brushing has so many benefits;
It can help to buff away your old skin cells, improve your skin’s overall appearance, and get your circulation back on track.
It can even help to increase lymphatic flow and boost your energy and immunity levels.
A big question we are often asked is, will dry brushing remove cellulite? Cellulite is tricky to treat and very complex, so we wrote a whole article about it cellulite: Dispelling the myths.
Armed with this information, we are sure you’ll agree that this is one little beauty treatment guaranteed to put the zing back into your skin.