Dry Skin Brushing – 7 Benefits for the Whole Body
Dry skin brushing may be the single most important therapy to add to your detox programme. Your skin is your largest elimination organ. It releases approx. 500 ml of waste each day and will be the first organ to show symptoms of imbalance or toxicity. The skin is often called the third kidney, as it eliminates a quarter of the toxins from the body (the lungs are the second kidney). If the skin cannot efficiently release toxins, you may experience rashes, acne, hives, itchiness, body odour, eczema and psoriasis.
Dead skin cells, excreted wastes and external pollution (including dirt and skin care products) can build up and clog the pores, which inhibits the skin from effectively releasing toxins.
If toxins are unable to escape through the skin, they will either be stored in fat cells, contributing to cellulite and other fatty deposits, or they will be re-circulated into the blood stream, overworking the kidneys, liver and other detox organs. Therefore the simple and easy therapy of daily dry skin brushing can have a huge overall impact on whole body health.
It is well known that exfoliating the skin is great for radiant and vibrant looking skin, but it is also essential for good circulation, a strong immune system, stimulating the nervous system, toning the muscles and improving digestion.
Here is a list of many benefits of dry skin brushing:
- Stimulates blood and lymph flow: The lymphatic system is an important part of your cleansing and immune system. White blood cells (lymphocytes) carry nutrients to cells and remove waste. The lymph flows outside the circulatory system to bathe, cleanse and restore all cells, but it must be returned to the blood vessels to dump its waste. It does this through tiny lymph vessels with one-way valves to the heart. If we don’t move lymph fast enough, we end up with swollen tissues, particularly the ankles. Exercise, massage and skin brushing help to speed the process and clear the lymphatic system.
- Removes dead skin cells: Dry skin is a sign of detoxification. It is important to remove the dead cells to keep them from clogging the system. This will also improve skin texture and renew the skin cells.
- Stimulates the hormone and oil glands: with daily brushing and showering/bathing the skin can produce the oil needed to stay healthy. Sweating is an important part of detoxification, but if the skin is clogged, you may experience foul body odour and extra work is put onto the bladder, kidneys and liver. With daily skin brushing and a diet consisting of a large part of leafy greens (which adds chlorophyll to your system and functions as a natural deodoriser) there will be no unpleasant body odour; and if you ever are in a situation where there is no water, this technique will keep your skin clean and odour free.
- Reduces cellulite: It requires daily brushing for several months to see results. When you massage and stimulate the skin, it breaks up toxic deposits of stored fatty tissues that pucker the overlying skin into cellulite.
- Strengthens the immune system: Dry skin brushing can reduce the length of infections and illness by moving the toxins more quickly through the system and stimulating the lymph to move waste matter out.
- Stimulates the nervous system, tones muscles, tighten skin: By stimulating nerve endings in the skin, this technique will rejuvenate your nerves and activate individual muscle fibre, resulting in toned muscles. The increased blood flow to the skin and the removing of dead cells stimulates the creation of new skin cells which tightens and regenerates overall skin health.
- Nurtures the body: An important aspect of this practice is the pleasure of nurturing your body. Learning to love your body is essential for weight loss and the healing of any bodily ‘dis-ease’.
Choosing a brush
You need to use a firm, natural bristle brush. Most brushes sold in chemists and beauty shops are too soft to achieve the desired results. If you cannot find a suitable brush, contact me to order a firm brush. At first your skin might be sensitive to the brushing, but it will soon get used to it, and the dry skin brushing massage will be enjoyable and invigorating.
How to use the brush
- brush your dry body before showering or bathing, preferably in the morning.
- start at the feet and brush towards the heart, either in brisk circular or upward, long even movements.
- start with your right lower leg (front & back), the upper thigh all around, inside the knee, over the buttocks, waist, abdomen, arms (starting at fingertips), armpits, your sides, breasts, chest, neck and back. Do about 10 strokes on each area, but more on problem zones.
- brush lightly on sensitive areas like the breasts, more firmly on areas like the soles of the feet.
- finish by taking a shower, ending with a cold shower to further improve circulation and lymph flow.
- dry off vigorously and massage a pure plant oil, lotion or cream into your skin.
- do not brush on injured, open skin.
- for the face use a softer, smaller brush – brushing only once or twice a week.
- to add to the effectiveness of the regime, do a salt & oil face and whole body scrub once a week: see the post on Himalayan Salt on this site for instrucitons.
- wash your brush from time to time in some warm soapy water, rinse well and leave in the sun to dry
Enjoy glowing, healthy skin!
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