How To Do Dry Body Brushing
Sounds weird, doesn’t it? Well it sorta is, but it feels great. Dry body brushing is an ancient Ayurvedic technique with many skin and overall health benefits. It’s also a very inexpensive daily detox strategy. All you need is a dry body brush and it will last you quite a while. I’ve had mine for about 5 years now. Dry body brushing helps boost your circulation and get your lymph moving. It helps remove dead skin cells and encourages new skin to emerge. It feels great on dry skin and helps your skins overall tone. It helps with any body blemishes like those pesky keratin deposits on your arms we call “chicken skin” and helps open your pores to release toxins. I dry brush often as a detox booster to help my body rid itself of toxins. Bonus, some have found it helps improve the appearance of cellulite! J Not that any of you beautiful creatures have any of that unsightly stuff. Heaven forbid.
I do this almost daily before showering or bathing… even when I’m sweaty. Yes, you can clean the brush pretty easily with some gentle castile soap and tea tree essential oil. More on that later.
You can get a brush at whole foods or amazon…or I’m sure other healthy type places. Just make sure you ask if the brush is a “dry body brush.” Then you should be good to go.
Here’s the one I have (Link to Amazon).
A few general rules before you get started:
1. Always brush toward your heart which helps with circulation and bringing lymph back to your heart. Except for your stomach. Around your six-pack, brush in a clockwise circular motion. This helps with digestion. Good digestion = sexy abs. Yep. That’s a health fact. Also, around joints like elbows and knees you should also brush in a circular motion.
2. Do not brush on broken skin, scabs, or very sensitive skin. Do not brush on varicose veins and any places that are not mentioned below. Never dry brush your face. Ouch! The brush is a little rough, be nice to your bod! You skin should be pink afterward, not red or irritated.
3. The thinner the skin, the lighter the pressure and vice versa. So go crazy on the bottoms of your feet and be gentle on the tops.
4. Always use long sweeping motions… think about helping move your lymph and stimulating your circulation through your body with the brush.
*Bonus Tip: Visualizations always seem to make body care rituals feel more effective too. J
5. Go over each area about 3-5 times… or 3-5 long, sweeping brush strokes.
Ok, now here’s how to do it:
1. Starting at the bottoms of your feet, which you can apply more pressure on, brush starting at your toes going toward the bottoms of your heels. Then do the same over the tops of your feet, but don’t press quite as hard because this skin is thinner.
2. Now brush up both legs. Start wherever, just use long upward strokes. I usually go from my ankles to my knees about 3-5 times on the front of my legs, then the same on the back. Do both legs of course. Then use the same long, upward strokes from your knees to your thighs, front and back. Yes both legs.
3. Feel free to concentrate some extra love anywhere you may have some cellulite…thighs, legs, butt, etc. Go for it!
4. On to your glutes! Brush in long upward strokes again 3-5 times per cheek.
5. Next do your stomach. I usually do my whole stomach in circular motions and then focus a little extra time on my lower abs. Or whatever mine are … J
6. For your back, think about where your heart is. You always want to brush toward your heart. So start at your midback and brush up toward your heart and stop there. For your upper back, you will brush down toward your heart and stop around your shoulder.
7. For women, you can brush in gentle circular motions around your chest… going around each pec separately in a circular motion. Keeping it PG… Be careful as the skin around here is sensitive! Men: First, for the approximately 5% of readers that are male, thanks for being here! Love you! You can just brush straight toward your heart since you likely have nothing in the way like us ladies.
8. Now, treat your hands just like your feet. Brush the palms starting at your fingertips and you can go all the way on the bottom side of your arm to your elbows or armpits. By now, you’ve got the idea. Long, sweeping motions. Then do the back of your hands, starting at your fingertips, and brush all the way over the tops of your arms up to your shoulders.
9. Armpits, you just brush, GENTLY, down toward your heart. I recommend you are somewhat dry, but if you aren’t its ok. You can wash the brush later like I mentioned above. Armpits are great detoxifies for the body, that’s why the smell so great. They help get the dirt out!
10. I do the back of my neck carefully, and generally don’t do the front much because the skin is very thin and sensitive.
Total time doing this should be about 5 minutes… a little more or a little less. If you really want to feel great you can go up to 20 minutes according to Dr. Mercola (LINK IT). I also like to breathe deeply and make this a relaxing ritual. I remind myself I am doing something good for my body because it does so much for me. Yay body! Then I jump in the shower or bath when I’m done now that my pores are all open and ready to detox the junk out. This is one of those rituals that feels good and gets addictive… which I love because it turns into something I look forward to instead of seeming like a chore.