There’s a quick and easy way to get soft, supple and revitalized skin. It takes less than five minutes of your day, costs nearly next to nothing and as an added bonus, helps your body inside and out.
What is it? The answer is dry skin brushing.
What is dry skin brushing?
Dry skin brushing involves scrubbing the skin with a light brush. Aside from the usual effect of removing dead skin cells, dry brushing is said to possess various health benefits, including the ability to reduce cellulites and eliminate harmful toxins from the body.
Skin brushing is not a new practice. Variations of skin brushing have been used for thousands of years throughout history. The Japanese engaged in vigorous scrubbing with a loofa before their hot baths. Ancient Greek athletes used strigiles, a special skin scraper to get rid of grime after a hard training or physical competition. The Cherokee Indians scrubbed their skin with dried corn cobs to enhance their skin’s beauty and durability, while the Comanche Indians used the sands at the bottom of the Texas River.
How does skin brushing work?
The skin eliminates harmful waste and toxins from the body, just like the kidneys, liver, colon, lungs, mucous membranes and the lymph system. It is the largest organ in the body where at least a third of the body’s daily impurities are excreted through it. Dry skin brushing helps to keep the skin’s pores open and active, thereby helping the skin in its cleansing function. If the skin is inactive and the pores are constantly clogged, its ability to eliminate and excrete waste is impaired. This puts unnecessary load on your other organs.
Dry skin brushing also helps to stimulate your lymphatic system by increasing the flow of lymph fluid throughout the body. The lymph system is a drainage network of fluid, organs and vessels that is responsible for the elimination of cellular waste products. It also contributes to the strength of the immune system through the production of certain white blood cells and antibodies. Unlike the cardiovascular system, it does not have an automatic pumping device. It depends on the movement of muscles to keep on working.
The skin loses its ability to shed dead skin cells as it ages. This buildup of dead skin cells can take on a thick, dry and slightly leathery appearance, which is common to aged skin. Dry skin brushing naturally exfoliates dead skin cells, thereby revealing the new and suppler skin beneath. This practice also stimulates the sweat and oil glands, helping to keep the skin moisturized.
In addition, by clearing the skin of blockages and excess debris, the skin is free to absorb oxygen and nutrients into your body. This is particularly helpful when applying essential oils and moisturizers unto the skin.
And as its effects are similar to a massage, regular practice of dry skin brushing can help improve blood circulation. This contributes to healthier muscle tone and better distribution of fat in the body.
Benefits of Dry Skin Brushing
Here is a list of the benefits that dry skin brushing can bring to you:
– Assists the lymph system and the eliminative capacity of your body
– Improves the immune system
– Stimulates and enhances blood circulation
– Removes layers of dead skin
– Improves skin texture
– Helps prevents premature ageing
– Helps release fat deposits under the skin
– Improves muscle tone
Step-by-Step Instructions to Dry Skin Brushing
1. Start with your feet and work your way up to your legs using swift upward strokes.
2. Once done with your lower body, shift on working on your upper extremities. Start with your hands and move up your arms towards your heart using the same swift upward strokes.
3. Next, work on your back using a long handled brush or ask your partner to help out.
4. Last, work on your abdomen, chest and neck using clockwise strokes. Avoid brushing the skin on the face as skin on this area is sensitive.
Things to remember:
– Use natural bristled brushes or a loofa. Avoid using synthetic or nylon gloves and brushes as they are too rough and can damage the skin.
– Do this in the morning before you take a shower. Start with light strokes until you get used to the sensation, then apply firmer pressure to your strokes.
– Brush for about three to five minutes until your skin is rosy and a bit tingly.
– Always take a shower after brushing to wash off dead skin cells.
– Keep a dry brush for each member of the family. Avoid sharing of brushes.