Thursday, March 3, 2016

What is Dry Brushing and How to Do It

Dry brushing is exactly what it sounds like. It's literally brushing your body without using any oil, butters, or other moisturizer.

Why dry brush? My first experience with the holistic skin care ritual proved that it makes your skin smoother and softer almost instantly. I felt it removed much more dead skin cells than using a brush (or even my beloved exfoliating gloves) in the shower.

In short: Dry brushing keeps you from being ashy. 

It's also supposed to be really good for supporting your body's natural detoxification system. Refinery 29 reports on dry brushing:
According to aesthetician Susan Ciminelli, dry brushing increases the circulation of lymphatic fluid and blood flow. It helps circulate nutrients through the body as well as waste, helping to take pressure off the kidneys to regulate the amount of water in the body. Excess water is secreted, and Ciminelli even claims that it "helps to keep the layer of fat under the skin's surface very thin. The thinner that layer of fat, the easier it is for the body to excrete toxins through the skin."
I also love how dry brushing makes me feel warm and energized. If you often crave a good back scratch like I do, you're gonna really enjoy dry brushing.

How exactly does one dry brush? Is there a specific way to do it?

First, pick a good brush. A natural brush is best. I chose this vegan body brush made with Japanese palm. It's a nice alternative to rubbing pig hair or fake plastic bristles all over my body.

Hop into the shower or tub, without water running. Start at your ankles and brush up towards your heart. Once you get to your mid section, brush towards your belly button and up to your heart, moving from the back to your front. Lift your arms over your head and brush down toward your heart. That's it.

(If you wanna be neurotic about perfect your dry brushing method, check out Green Smoothie Girl's Skin Brushing 101 Guide which has a video and a helpful infographic.)

Clean your brush once a week by soaking it in a bowl of water with some white vinegar. Air dry, in a sunny spot if possible.

Do you love dry brushing too?

Olivia Lane Lovejoy is a Blogger, Green Living Educator, and Health Coach trained at The Institute for Integrative Nutrition. She's also author of Baking Soda & Bliss: The Healthy & Happy Guide to Green Cleaning 

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