Dry brushing skin that is flaky, dry or even normal is a spa-like technique that offers many health benefits. This highly underrated technique is a recommended addition to any beauty regimen.
At first glance, the benefits of dry brushing the skin almost seem too good to be true. They seem so miraculous, in fact, that it's a wonder more people do not incorporate dry brushing into their regular regimen. The truth, however, is that many people are simply unaware of what dry brushing actually is. Learning about the rewards the skin reaps as a result of dry brushing is the first step in incorporating it into a beauty routine.
Bid Dryness Goodbye
You don't need a dermatologist to tell you that flakes and dry patches aren't a pretty sight. In fact, they're downright ugly, especially as the weather heats up and your arm- and leg-baring clothes suddenly seem much more appealing. Of course, they're only appealing if your skin looks good. Dry brushing is an excellent way to achieve soft, smooth, flake-free skin - and maintain it. The natural exfoliation the brush provides is second to none in ridding the body of dead skin cells to reveal a new, fresh and invigorated layer.
The Sensation of Circulation
If the idea of massaging a dry brush over the skin sounds unpleasant to you, think again. Not only does it feel relaxing and therapeutic, it also increases circulation, thereby encouraging the body's elimination of toxic waste. Think of dry brushing as an internal massage, of sorts. The process of rubbing the brush over the skin starts the process of detoxification through the lymphatic system.
Cellulite may be one of womankind's most infuriating nemeses. While those unsightly dimples and wrinkles aren't likely to vanish permanently, their look can be lessened by dry brushing. Cellulite is caused by toxins; given the dry brushing technique's incredible impact on toxic waste, it's safe to assume that the practice will have a similar effect on dimpled skin.
Immune System Support
Wouldn't it be great if that pesky cold's duration could be diminished even just a little bit? Dry brushing provides an excellent source of support to the immune system by stimulating the body's lymphatic system. In return, toxins are drained and thus the body is detoxified. This is essentially an internal workout for the body - dry brushing reaches out to those areas that cannot be touched by the human hand.
It won't make you a bodybuilder by any stretch, but dry brushing can improve the tone of your muscles and encourage a more even distribution of fat cells within the body. When the nerve endings are stimulated in response to the brush's vigorous movements, the result is an overall healthier state of mind and being.
The Dry Brushing Skin Care Technique
It sounds easy enough - and it is! Create a dry brushing regimen for yourself by adding these simple steps to your routine.
- Purchase a natural bristle brush. The brush should not be constructed of nylon or other synthetic materials, because these can easily cause minute scratches on the skin. A natural brush is less abrasive and certainly more appropriate for individuals who have sensitive skin.
- The skin should be dry, thus dry brushing should be performed prior to taking a bath or shower. This will allow dead skin cells and impurities to be thoroughly eliminated. Dry brushing on wet skin does not allow for the same effect.
- Start with the feet first. Brush the area vigorously and completely, moving upward slowly to the ankles, calves, thighs, stomach, hands and arms.
It is extremely important to brush towards the heart, use gentle strokes in areas where the skin is thin (such as the breasts) and avoid brushing the face and nipples.
- Step into the shower and rinse away the impurities with warm water. Follow up with a splash of cold water to encourage blood circulation. Dry your body briskly and vigorously with a terry cloth towel to further stimulate circulation and provide additional exfoliation.
Words of Warning
Do not dry brush if you:
- Suffer from a heart condition, have high blood pressure or diabetes
- Have psoriasis, eczema or extremely sensitive, easily-irritated skin
- Have broken skin, rashes, wounds or infections
If you have any doubts about whether or not you should begin a dry brushing regimen, consult a dermatologist.