Welcome one and all to the wonderful world of dry brushing—a skin-softening journey through time, space and self-care. Together, we’ll uncover the story and secrets behind this ancient practice which has stood the test of time and is now making waves in modern skincare routines. We’ll also be diving deep into the many whizz-bang benefits it offers for your skin (hello, exfoliation, improved circulation, lymphatic support, increased absorption of skincare products, enhanced skin texture!) So, grab your brush, perhaps a nice cup of green tea, and get ready to embark on a not-at-all-boring lesson on Dry Brushing 101.
Brushing Up On History
To begin, let’s travel back in time to ancient civilizations where dry brushing was celebrated as the holy grail of skincare. Originating in ancient Ayurvedic practices, dry brushing, also known as "Garshana," involves the gentle brushing of the body with a natural bristle brush. The roots of dry brushing can also be traced back to ancient Egypt, where plant fibre brushes were used to stimulate the skin and enhance blood circulation. In ancient Greece and Rome, athletes utilised strigils, metal or bone tools, to scrape away dirt and sweat after rigorous physical activities. Fast forward to the 20th century, and dry brushing gained popularity in Europe as a luxurious spa treatment, cherished for its rejuvenating effects. Yep, we told you—dry brushing has been around for a good time, and a very long time.
Building Our Skills
Now we've completed our history lesson, let's get down to business and master the art of dry brushing. Here’s our tried and tested method:
- Choose the right brush: Select a brush with natural bristles and a long handle for ease of use. The bristles should be firm but not too harsh on the skin.
- Prepare your skin: Ensure your skin is dry and clean before starting the dry brushing process. It's best to do it before showering or bathing.
- Begin with gentle strokes: Start at your feet and work your way upwards, using long sweeping motions towards your heart. Apply light pressure and let the bristles glide smoothly over your skin.
- Brush each area multiple times: Focus on each area for a few strokes before moving on to the next. Remember to be gentle and avoid any sensitive or irritated areas.
- Pay attention to direction: Always brush in the direction towards your heart to stimulate blood circulation and lymphatic flow.
- Vary the pressure: As you become more accustomed to dry brushing, you can gradually increase the pressure. However, never brush too hard or cause any discomfort to your skin.
- Cover the entire body: Ensure you brush your entire body, including your legs, arms, back, abdomen, and chest. Don't forget harder-to-reach areas like your shoulders and upper back.
- Cleanse with a good rinse: After dry brushing, take a soothing shower or bath and use your favourite whipped shower foam to wash away the exfoliated skin cells and reveal the refreshed, revitalised skin underneath.
- Add moisturiser: Seal the deal by moisturising, allowing your skin to drink in the hydration and emit a megawatt glow.
And, don’t forget—dry brushing doesn't have to be a mundane chore! In fact, it’s the perfect time to spice things up and allow the ritual to become a joyful part of your self-care routine. We suggest investing in quality brushes with longer handles, allowing you to reach every nook and cranny effortlessly. And let's not forget about the power of essential oils! Infusing your brushing ritual with the calming scents of lavender, citrus, or peppermint can make this practice feel all the more fresh.
The Most *Dazzling* Benefits of Dry Brushing
No surprises here: the upsides to dry brushing are extensive. Here are a few of our favourites that keep us coming back for more—and more, and more:
- Exfoliates Dead Skin Cells: Dry brushing gently sloughs away dead skin cells, revealing a smoother, more vibrant complexion.
- Enhances Blood Circulation: Stimulating blood flow through dry brushing helps deliver oxygen and nutrients to the skin, promoting a natural glow.
- Supports Lymphatic Drainage: By stimulating the lymphatic system, dry brushing aids in detoxification, reducing the appearance of puffiness and promoting a glowy, new-born complexion.
- Unclogs Pores: Dry brushing helps remove dirt, oil, and impurities from the skin, leaving your pores squeaky clean and unclogged.
- Prevents Ingrown Hairs: By exfoliating the skin, dry brushing helps prevent the occurrence of ingrown hairs and promotes smoother, bump-free skin.
- Boosts Absorption of Skincare Products: By removing dead skin cells and unclogging pores, dry brushing enhances the effectiveness of your favourite skincare products, allowing them to penetrate deeply into the skin.
- Invigorates the Senses: The gentle strokes of dry brushing invigorate your skin and awaken your senses, leaving you feeling refreshed and revitalised.
- Promotes Relaxation: Incorporating dry brushing into your self-care routine offers a well-deserved moment of zen, helping to reduce stress and promote relaxation.
Making Dry Brushing Your BFF
Now that you've discovered the wonders of dry brushing, don't let it be a one-time affair. To truly reap the benefits, consistency is key—aim to incorporate dry brushing into your skincare routine 2-3 times a week for that extra oomph. Remember, your skin is unique, so pay attention to its cues and adjust the pressure and frequency accordingly. Let dry brushing become a moment to pause and connect with your body—your skin will thank you.
Happy Sundae x
Shower or bath, kick-back with your new fave shower foams:
Written By: Lizzie Waley (Sundae Co-Founder & Body Care Enthusiast) | LinkedIn
Fact Checked: Charnnie Frimpong (Sundae Content Marketing Manager) | Linkedin