The History of Dry Brushing
For centuries, from Ancient Greece to Japan, bathing rituals have included a form of dry exfoliation to jumpstart the lymphatic system, soften skin and rejuvenate vitality. In Ancient Greece athletes competing in rigorous physical activity and competitions of strength used a skin-scraping method after bouts of exertion to stimulate the flow of energy, encourage vitality throughout the body and help remove the debris of the competition from the skin. Similarly in Japan, ancient bathing rituals included an intense dry body scrub down prior to bathing to ensure that dead skin cells were adequately removed, allowing the now softened skin to thrive in the following treatments.
How Are Body Brushes Made?
Historically, body brushes have been crafted with wild boar bristles. The hairs were firm yet flexible which allowed for the brush to effectively slough off dry skin without causing damage. However, in our modern society, the sustainability of boar bristles leaves a lot to be desired. Thankfully with the advancement of technology, it is now possible to create completely vegan and plant-based body brushes using sisal fibers! Derived from the Sisal plant, a perennial succulent, these environmentally fibers are biodegradable and easily renewable, allowing for a sustainable dry brush option. But whichever brush you choose, the act of brushing daily and putting in the time will bring a glow to your skin along with a plethora of other positive changes.
Suffice to say that dry brushing has been an active part of our collective bathing consciousness for quite some time and we can see why. Taking just five minutes in the morning, before hopping in the shower, to brush your skin from your feet towards your heart can result in exhilarating changes over time.
The Benefits of Dry Brushing
Get Soft & Supple
First and foremost, dry brushing in its most basic form is an excellent way to maintain daily body exfoliation. Using a firm, plant-based bristle brush can help slough off the outermost layer of dead skin cells to make way for fresh newer cells beneath. This daily exfoliation can help your skin feel and look smoother and more radiant as an even canvas is the key to glowing skin.
Stimulate & Tone
As we brush from our feet towards our hearts, our body is gently motivated and encouraged to promote invigorating circulation, which can result in a full body feeling of stimulation and rejuvenation. You may feel a boost in energy and overall vitality as you continue to brush consistently. Additionally, with better circulation our skin and bodies will appear firmer, fresher, more radiant and toned.
The Daily Practice
A dry-brushing practice can be a simple addition to your morning routine to give your body a jolt of exhilaration. As with anything, the key to dry-brushing is consistency and whether you practice daily, weekly, or as an indulgent act, the benefits will continue to improve with each passing of the brush. Explore the steps below and discover the ritual.
Step 1: Find a Brush
First you want to find a body brush that works for you and that you feel comfortable using since you will likely be using it every day. Once you have found your brush, the rest is simple.
Step 2: Work Your Way Up
In the morning, before hopping into the shower, run the brush gently yet firmly up from your feet towards your heart, working your way up your limbs and torso. Starting with your feet, work the brush up your shin and thigh with long fluid strokes. Apply a moderate pressure that’s comfortable and make sure to brush the soles and tops of your feet as well. After you have finished with your legs, brush over your derriere working towards the groin in circular motions.
Step 3: On to the Arms
Move on to brushing your arms, starting at your hands and working up towards the shoulder. Again, use long fluid strokes as you draw the brush up your arm. You will likely experience some flushing in your skin and that is perfectly normal. As we brush, our skin is stimulated and that pink flush is the visual cue that things are energizing and moving along.
Step 4: The Torso
Once you have brushed over your arms and legs, adjust the pressure of the brush as you begin to work over the torso. Gentle pressure should be used when brushing over the breasts so as not to disturb the delicate tissues of that area. Work in circular motions moving down towards the stomach.
Step 5: Finish It Off
After you have thoroughly brushed, simply hop in the shower or bath and continue on with your routine. Always finish with a body oil or lotion to lock in moisture. It’s that simple!
Quick, easy and effective, dry brushing is a daily act of selfcare that can change the tone of the day in just a couple minutes. With consistent use you may find that you have more energy, you feel lighter and your skin is glowing. Who would say no to that?