by Lori Durr, Owner, Sundara Sanctuary
Strengthen your immune system and have soft glowing skin
Dry brushing is a natural health practice that involves brushing over dry skin, followed by a shower, bath, or sauna. This process was popularized by Dr. Paavo Airola of Finland and is still popular in Europe because the health benefits are so extensive.
It can improve blood circulation, lymphatic drainage, release toxins, exfoliate dead skin, reduce ingrown hairs, and lead to many other health benefits.
Our skin is the longest organ, stretching from the top of our head to the tip of our toes, and up to one-third of all the blood circulation in our body goes to the skin. Our skin is also responsible for eliminating most of the toxins inside of our bodies. Toxins are part of our everyday lives; from the air we breathe, to the food we eat, and the water we drink. Other organs in the body also release toxins as byproducts of their metabolism.
It is the lymphatic system’s job to wash away these toxins. The lymphatic system is part of your immune system, and when you have a daily practice of dry brushing, you improve blood circulation, which helps the lymphatic system become more efficient and expel toxins more quickly.
As you build a personal daily dry brushing routine, the blood flow to and from the skin is enhanced. Over time this will strengthen the skin, giving it a natural slow and smoother look and feel. The energizing benefits of dry brushing can be felt for days after starting the process and can also tighten the skin and reduce the appearance of cellulite.
The nice thing about dry brushing is you do not need much to get started, just a good quality brush.
There are many health benefits to building a daily dry brushing routine, from building your immune system, stimulating your lymphatic system, and improving the appearance of your skin.
See graphic for proper dry brushing techniques.
General rules for dry brushing the skin:
- Always use a plant bristle dry brush — these are made from plant sources like jute, sisal, tampico, coconut fibers or cactus fibers.
- Choose a bristle strength to suit your skin — brushes come in soft, medium or firm.
- Perform on dry skin only.
- Start on lower extremities working upward in one motion.
- Repeat brush strokes seven times per area of the body.
- Adjust pressure for your comfort.
- Follow brushing with either a shower, bath or sauna.
- Work from the left to the right side of the body.
- Always nourish your skin after the shower/sauna with an organic, nontoxic body butter or oil.