Dry brushing has been used for ages to remove dead skin cells, eliminate ingrown hairs, reduce cellulite, soften the skin and improve circulation by stimulating the lymphatic system. A firm, bristled brush is swept across the skin always towards the heart. Most people overlook the importance of this super easy technique, especially men! Dry brushing can be done by both men and women! It’s called “dry” brushing because you aren’t scrubbing up while you bathe or shower. Instead, both your skin and the brush are completely dry. It is a common Ayurvedic practice however many cultures including the Japanese and ancient Greeks have used skin brushing to cleanse the skin.
Benefits of Dry Brushing
- Dry brushing exfoliates the skin as the bristles of the brush manually sweep away dull, rough, flaky skin cells. After a dry brushing session, your skin will feel softer and smoother. Always apply oil after dry brushing to rehydrate the skin cells.
- The brisk brushing stimulates circulation. Dry brushing is thought to help the body release toxins through sweat as the course bristles on the brush stimulate the pores and open them up. This makes it easier for the body to sweat, which in turn reduces the amount of toxins flowing through the lymphatic system.
- Dry brushing leaves your skin tingling as blood rushes to the surface. This brings a surge of oxygen and essential nutrients to the skin.
- Increased circulation plumps the skin, making cellulite look less obvious.
Side Effects of Dry Brushing
- The most common side effect of dry brushing is irritated skin. This is more likely to happen if you brush too hard, brush too often, or if your skin is especially sensitive. While your skin may be a bit pink after a session, you most definitely don’t want to see redness or abrasions on the skin. Your skin shouldn’t burn or sting afterward, either. Dry brushing should feel good and tingly but if it doesn’t, you’re being too aggressive.
- Dry brushing can leave your skin feeling dry. It is essential to use a hydrating oil or lotion after dry brushing. I like coconut oil or shea butter!
- Never dry brush over eczema, psoriasis, rashes, wounds, sunburn, or irritations. If you have very sensitive skin, you may want to skip dry brushing altogether. In any case, if your skin seems to be getting irritated by your newfound dry brush routine, scale back the frequency or stop dry brushing altogether.
- Always use a natural bristle brush. These are made from plant sources like jute, sisal, even cactus fibers and avoid plastic brushes to limit toxin exposure
- When dry brushing the face, always go down towards the heart and use a mini facial dry brush. Also make sure you’re being very gentle as the skin on the face is quite thin. The brush you’re using for your body won’t work for the face. Instead, you’ll need a smaller brush with much softer bristles. If even soft-bristled brushes are too abrasive for your face, consider using a soft cloth instead.
How to Dry Brush the Skin
Dry brushing is VERY easy and does not take a tutorial to figure out! once you have your brush, you’re ready to go!
- Remove your clothing and stand in a dry bathtub or over a towel if necessary to catch dry skin flakes. Starting at the feet, brush upward toward the body with light, smooth circular strokes. Dry brush the entirety of each leg, working up to the upper thighs.
- Continue with the buttocks and back (provided you can reach; if not, no worries you can skip it!)
- Move on to the arms, starting at the backs of the hands and work upwards to the shoulders, again using light, smooth strokes.
- Your stomach and chest are much more sensitive than the rest of your body so be very careful or skip this area altogether, especially the breasts!
- If you’d like to also brush your face and neck, switch to a smaller, softer brush. Brush lightly downward on the neck and face towards the heart.
- After your dry brushing session, shower or bathe, then finish with an application of lotion, body balm, or body oil.
Grab your brush today and get started on improving the health and look of your skin!