In the past few months I have acquired a new obsession with dry brushing. I turned to Certified Integrative Nutrition Health Coach, Alex French to share the benefits of this technique. Enjoy!
Pop quiz... what is the largest organ in the human body and is responsible for excreting one third of your body’s toxins? The answer would be your skin. Your skin is an organ of elimination and plays a role in daily detoxification. Your skin receives a third of all the blood circulated in your body and when your blood is full of toxins it shows on your skin. When your skin is full of toxins and dead skin cells, it will not be able to function properly. Sadly, while it is the last to receive nutrients in your body, it will be the first to show signs of imbalance or deficiency (hello acne).
So good thing there is an easy 5 min solution to this problem... Dry Brushing.
Dry Brushing not only exfoliates your skin but stimulates your lymphatic system to activate waste removal. Other benefits include exfoliation of dead skin cells, unclogging of pores, improved circulation, toxin elimination, decreasing the appearance of cellulite, improved digestion and kidney function, and its invigorating! Honestly, it becomes slightly addicting and who doesn't love seeing tighter, glowing skin.
Here’s how to get started:
- Purchase a natural (not synthetic) bristle brush. I recommend one with a long handle. http://www.vitacost.com/earth-therapeutics-natural-body-brush-1-brush
- Start on dry skin before bathing. I suggest doing it in the tub (you will see the dead skin flake and fall off). Work in gentle circular, upward strokes and then longer sweeping motions. Always start at your feet and move towards your heart (this is the direction that the lymphatic fluid moves).
- Brush several times in the same area as you are moving towards your heart and overlap as you move.
- On your back you can brush from the neck down to the lower back.
- Move from your feet up to your lower legs, inner/outer thighs (pay extra attention to any troublesome areas where cellulite may be more prevalent), stomach, hands to arms, and back.
- Be cautious of sensitive skin around your chest and never brush over inflamed, cut, or sore or sunburnt skin.
- Hop in the shower and wash away the toxins! You can alternate between the hottest water you can tolerate and the coldest for increased benefits. This will stimulate circulation and bring the blood flow to the top layers of your skin.
- After showering, follow up with a natural body butter or oil (like coconut oil) or a botanically based moisturizer, no mineral oil or baby oil. With all that detoxing you just did it would be bad to put toxins right back on your skin with a moisturizer full of harmful ingredients. FYI.. the skin absorbs whatever you put on it within 26 seconds, so make sure you are putting safe products on your skin.
You can dry brush every day and twice a day is recommended for best results. Clean your brush once a week, with soap and water and leave to dry.
*Alex is also an Independent Consultant for Arbonne. Arbonne is a health and wellness company inspired by nature and enhanced by science, creating products that are botanically based and pure, safe and beneficial.