The Real Benefits of Dry Brushing Your Skin

What is Dry Brushing Anyway? It is the practice of running a dry, stiff bristle brush over your bare skin. Techniques may vary, however, most aestheticians, beauty bloggers and celebrities recommend brushing your limbs and torso towards your heart for five-ten minutes every single day before you shower.

Why Should I Dry Brush? I have heard a myriad of claims such as dry brushing will exfoliate flaky winter skin, increase circulation, detoxify your body, help digestion, reducing keratosis pilaris (otherwise known as KP, which are  many small rough bumps that tend to show up on the backs of arms and thighs),  improving the appearance of cellulite, draining your lymphatic system and even clearing your chakras. Are all of these claims true? Sadly, no, not all of the claims are true.

So, How Does Dry Brushing Benefit Me? Dry Brushing will increase blood flow and circulation, giving your skin a flushed, youthful and “slightly swollen” appearance. If dry brushing is done gently and consistently it is very effective at exfoliating skin, preventing and loosening ingrown hairs and it will also aid in the appearance and severity of Keratosis Pilaris (KP). Theoretically increasing circulation will help to drain the lymphatic system, however, there is no scientific evidence to back up this claim. Additionally, there is no evidence that dry brushing will improve the appearance of cellulite, or clear chakras.

Who Should Not Dry Brush? Do not dry brush if you have eczema, psoriasis, broken skin, sensitive skin or cellulitis. Dry brushing will irritate and worsen any of those conditions.  Do not dry brush over acne, mosquito or other bug bites, and especially not over sunburned skin. Furthermore, never, ever dry brush your face.

How Should I Dry Brush? Before a shower, gently use a dry brush like the Signature Repechage® Dry Brush. This English style, strap-back brush has a kiln-dried hardwood oval brush block filled with densely packed, high-grade natural boar bristles. And, it costs $15 at repechage.com

I use this brush in light circular motions and I direct those motions to go towards my heart. I do this for about 5 minutes total on my legs, torso, shoulders and arms. I avoid my breasts, neck and face. I then proceed to take my shower. I avoid using water that is too hot as this strips moisture from the skin. I use moisturizing body wash and then I follow-up post shower with a light body oil on damp skin. I wait a few minutes and then I proceed to apply a treatment body cream or butter. Currently, I’ve been enjoying using Vita Cura® Triple Action Body Contour Cream by Repechage. I use this on my legs, buttocks and torso and I find that it has a temporary tightening and lifting effect on my skin. I also like that it soaks in without leaving my skin greasy, so I can dress immediately afterwards.

Have any of you tried dry brushing? Let me know your thoughts in the comments below.

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