This is a wonderful, natural way to take care of your skin and your body.
Skin brushing is a simple technique that stimulates blood and lymphatic flow, encourages waste removal, reduces visible signs of cellulite, exfoliates your skin, encourages new cell growth and can sustain or reestablish your skin's integrity.
Skin brushing affects the dermis (the skin layer that contains an abundance of blood and lymph vessels), nerves, glands, elastin and collagen fibers. The dermis provides nutrients and moisture to all the skin layers and lends contour and flexibility. When the dermis ages it loses its resilience, causing your skin to lose tone. This causes the skin to dehydrate and collapse into sags, wrinkles and lines.
The main function of red blood cells (many of which live in the deeper levels of the reticular dermis) is to bring oxygen to the body and remove carbon dioxide from our system. By increasing blood flow, more oxygen will be brought to all parts of your body and oxygenated cells look vibrant and healthy.
Your dermis has a huge effect on your lymphatic system. The lymphatic system is a major part of fluid absorption into your cells and waste removal through the body’s interstitial fluid. This system also transports and absorbs fats and fatty acids from the digestive system. Stimulating the lymphatic system will further enhance the removal of waste from your body, thus increasing the positive wellbeing your body requires to thrive!
Proper skin brushing also stimulates both the sweat and oil glands. Decreased sweat and oil gland functions can be features of aging. Yet another way skin brushing will help in the restoration of moist, supple skin. It will strengthen the skin's pores through which the skin is moisturized and cleansed.
How to Skin Brush
Using a brush (which we talk about below), start at your feet and sweep up the legs in long, light, brisk movements. For your arms, start at your hands and gently sweep towards your heart. Remember to get all sides of your body. All skin brushing movements should be towards the heart, to encourage the return of blood and lymphatic flow. This needs to be done very lightly to affect the lymphatic system – think of delicate baby skin, so be gentle.
What to Use
There are brushes especially for this, I find these the easiest to use. They are on a wooden handle with stiff bristles that have a bit of give to them. Think of what you would find in the bath tools aisle. Try a loofah sponge, gentle scrubby bath gloves, or even a washcloth, just remember don’t be too rough.
On your brush you can also add other elements to enhance the exfoliation process. Wine was used in the Middle Ages as an exfoliant. With this in mind, one could also try apple cider vinegar or kombucha tea.
Red wine vinegar, from the grocery store, works wonders. Just be mindful of the percentage, most stores sell 5-7%, those are great! If you are in Europe, or anyplace with a high percentage. Don’t do it!! It will burn as it says on the packaging.
My favorite, is apple cider vinegar.
Skin Brush first thing in the morning, when the increased blood flow will help wake you up!
Happy skin brushing, and here’s to your whole health!!
Don't have a brush right now?
Here's one that is perfect - it has a hand held section and a long extension for getting your back too!! Easy, easy and win, win.