JENNIFER MAC

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Dry Brushing - Beauty & Health Benefits

Skin brushing, also known as dry brushing, is a beauty secret few know about and even fewer practice.  When I first heard about dry brushing, it seemed like a mysterious ritual practiced by health gurus to keep clean because they spent time in places without showers. After meeting my first dry brusher with fabulous skin, however, I decided to try it.

During the aging process, skin cell renewal slows down causing wrinkles to set in and skin to sag.  To keep collagen and elastin plentiful, the best diet to consume is raw, living foods because they aid in the increase of cellular activity.  While cell replication is the first step in maintaining youthful skin, exfoliation is the next step in keeping skin radiant.  Dry brushing sloughs off dead skin cells, allowing porous skin to breathe and new skin cells to emerge.

This inexpensive practice of gently stroking the skin with a natural fiber brush or loofa gives the skin a silky, soft feeling.   Dry brushing also breaks up cellulite directly under the skin’s surface, especially those fat clumps around the hip and thigh area (this should be incentive enough to try dry brushing).  In addition to firming and smoothing out the skin, a much deeper work is done as the lymphatic system is cleansed and the immune system is strengthened.

Choose a natural fiber brush, cloth, or loofa.  Avoid using synthetic material on the skin.  For hard-to-reach places, use a brush with a handle.  Dry brushing strokes are light and gentle circular motions that feel soothing rather than scratchy.  With each circular stroke, end upwards and in the direction of the heart.  To get the glow, follow this five minute exercise daily.

1.     Start on the outside of the right foot, brush in circular motions moving up the leg.  Then do the same on the inside of the leg.  Repeat on the left leg.

2.     Brush large circular strokes on the right buttock.  Repeat on the left side.

3.     Similar to the legs, brush the outside of the right hand moving up the arm.  Then do the same on the inside of the arm.  Repeat on the left arm.

4.     Brush the stomach in circular motions starting at the naval and work outward.

5.     Brush the lower back in circular motions moving outward and upward.

6.     Brush the right side of the ribcage moving upward.  Repeat on the left side.

7.     Brush the breasts in circular motions, starting on the right side and avoiding the nipple area.

8.     Stroke the neck downward toward the heart.

9.     Avoiding the eye area, brush the face with outward and upward strokes.

Dry brushing the face is optional as many will think the face is too delicate.  One option is to use a softer brush for the face than for the body.  In fact, dry brushing the face increases circulation and tightens the skin.  Due to increased cell renewal from eating raw foods, dry brushing my face is one way I maintain a clean, exfoliated surface.  If suffering from acne or other skin disorders, avoid dry brushing those areas.

After dry brushing, rinse with warm water.  The skin is now perfectly clean and there is no need to use abrasive soaps with harsh chemicals.  Although dry brushing works as a natural cleanser, any cleansers used should contain all natural ingredients.  After rinsing, pat your skin with a towel.