we should all dry brush

That’s why.
When we think of skincare, we usually only think of products: serums, moisturizers, cleansers—the lot. However, when it comes to caring for our skin, there’s a lot more to it than just applying products. Not to mention, skincare jobs aren’t limited to our necks or shoulder blades, the rest of our body also needs care.
This is where more holistic practices come into play; dry brushing is one of them.
You’ve probably seen dry brushes a few times in your life, or read celebs like Cindy Crawford bragging about them. They are body brushes, usually with a wooden handle, featuring short, thick bristles that are closely packed, and there are some benefits to using them.
To better understand the benefits of dry brushing and how to do it right, we spoke to two experts. Here are their insights.

What is dry brushing?

“Dry brushing is exactly what it sounds like—brushing your dry skin without using any products,” explains Kate McLeod, founder of the eponymous skincare brand.
Plus, it’s an anti-inflammatory skin treatment that involves brushing the skin in upward and clockwise motions, explains Dr. Barbara Sturm, esthetician doctor and founder of the eponymous skincare company. “[It] helps unclog pores, mechanically stimulates the removal of dry skin, improves circulation, increases lymphatic flow, and removes toxins,” she says.

What are the benefits of dry brushing?

Dry brushing has two main benefits: physical exfoliation and lymphatic drainage.
“Dry brushing your body boosts your circulation and lymphatic system, a network of tissues and organs that help remove toxins from the body and prevent fluid retention,” explains Dr. Sturm. “Like a massage, the brush awakens the circulatory system and increases blood flow, which helps lymph flow faster through the body, ultimately filtering out toxins.
Due to the thick bristles of dry brushes, this will provide significant physical exfoliation. This can help unclog pores and remove dead skin cells, says Dr. Sturm.
For all the reasons above, she adds that dry brushing can improve skin tone and elasticity while firming the skin’s surface, helping reduce the appearance of cellulite and revealing brighter, smoother skin.

Are there any side effects of dry brushing?

In most cases, the only way to have a negative reaction to dry brushing is if you use too much pressure, which can cause irritation. That said, look for dry brushes that are gentle—especially if you have sensitive skin. Dr. Sturm recommends her SOFT BODY BRUSH, which has flexible bristles, while McLeod says to use her brand’s milder version, combined with one of her body stones, to keep skin moisturized after brushing.
Now, while dry brushing is safe, McLeod points out that if you have a sunburn, skip this practice.

What’s the best way to use a dry brush?

Dr. Sturm recommends dry brushing two to three times a week for dry skin in the morning and before a shower. “Dry brushing is super invigorating, and you wash your skin afterwards to remove exfoliated skin and any other impurities,” she says.
As far as method goes, McLeod says to brush from the outside in—from your fingers and toes up toward your heart. “Use short, soft strokes or small clockwise swirls—do this for two to five minutes,” she adds.


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