Do you really know how important your skin is?
Your skin is your largest organ and is an organ of elimination just like your kidneys, liver and colon. It is estimated that 1/3 of your body’s daily impurities(estimated to be over a pound daily) are excreted through the skin. Skin that is clogged with toxins and dead cells can’t function properly because the toxins aren’t being eliminated.
Your skin protects your body from extreme temperatures and chemicals; produces antibacterial substances to protect you from infections and enables your body to produce vitamin D when exposed to the sun.
Our bodies become less efficient in shedding the outer layers of dead skin cells as we get older and this can result in the skin becoming thick and dry looking…attributes we associate with “mature” skin.
Enter the ancient Ayurveda cleansing process of Dry Skin Brushing. Dry Skin Brushing is the process of using a natural bristle brush and daily brushing your skin from the bottom of your feet to your neck.
The benefits of dry skin brushing are:
a. Stimulate your Lymphatic System.
The Lymphatic System is a network that runs all over your body. It’s the secondary circulation system and runs alongside your body’s veins and arteries. The fluid it carries is called Lymph fluid and is clear, odorless and absorbent and transports the nutrients such as salts, minerals and proteins to all parts of the body. It also collects the waste products that are generated by the cells and then turns them over to the blood. The blood then carries the toxins to the lungs, kidneys, colon and skin for elimination. ( It is referred to as the body’s “drainage system or sewer system”.) The lymph system circulates in one direction and relies on the movement of your muscles and the movement of your diaphragm in order to circulate.
Skin brushing will help the lymph system to clean itself of the toxins. It will break down lymph fluids that have thickened(especially as we get older or in chronically ill people). When the lymph fluid flows consistently, it will produce more white blood cells.
b. Exfoliation of your skin
Removes dead and dry skin, clears your clogged pores and allows your skin to breathe. Your skin becomes softer and smoother. (some people claim it takes cares of cellulite after doing it for some time).
c. Increased circulation to your skin
This encourages metabolic waste elimination
d. Gives you energy.
How to do Dry Skin Brushing:
Supplies needed: You will need a brush to do the dry skin brushing. In the beginning your brush should be on the softer side because your skin isn’t used to the process yet. As time moves forward, your skin becomes stronger and a stronger brush is needed to get the same results. It is recommended that it be a natural bristle brush because the artificial bristles can scratch your skin. ( I have also used a dry wash cloth when I didn’t have a brush in the beginning…to see how I liked it and whether I wanted to continue, and still do so every once in a while). A soft washcloth is used for your face, not the brush you use for the rest of your body. Some people use a baby brush in the beginning if their skin is very sensitive. You want to feel stimulated when you brush your skin…not wounded.
Remember that you are always aiming for your heart…so if you start from the top, you are brushing downwards…you raise your arm and brush down. When you start from your feet, you are brushing upwards to your heart.
Do not brush on any cuts, wounds or rashes, and the delicate areas of your body. Your stomach is the only part of the body that you will brush in circular movements.
a. Starting with the bottom of your feet, brush your feet with long strokes(I don’t know about you, but both my palms and the bottoms of my feet are very sensitive and ticklish…when I brush both of these areas, I feel a lot of stimulation).
b. Move upwards on your foot and leg, brushing several times for each area. Then up to your hip and when you reach your stomach areas, brush in a clockwise movement.
c. When you are done with your lower body, go to your palm and brush your palms. Raise your arm and brush downwards…outer and inner arm. Lightly brush your neck area and breast/chest area.(leave the nipples alone)..downwards to your waist.
d. With either a very soft baby brush or soft washcloth, you can gently brush your face.
You are now done with the dry skin brushing and are ready to take your shower or taking a warm wet washcloth and wiping your body with it. Apply a good natural lotion.
You are going to feel energized and your skin will feel soft and supple after doing this for a while.
It is also good to do later in the day as well…for example, you come home from work and you need to go out again…you feel depleted. Do the dry skin brushing and use the wet washcloth all over your body if you don’t have time for a shower…and you will feel energized once again.
I do the oil pulling and the dry skin brushing as two of my daily regimen.
Hope you will try it and see if it will make a difference for you.
til next time…Eva