The claims of dry brushing include stimulation of the lymph system, helping the body rid itself of toxins and increasing circulation and energy. Um hello, sign me up!
But first, what is lymph?!
The lymphatic system is a vital part of the immune system. It’s a network of lymph nodes connected by lymphatic vessel that transports lymph throughout the body.
Lymph is formed from fluid that seeps through the thin walls of capillaries into the body’s tissues. This fluid contains oxygen, proteins, and other nutrients that nourish the tissues.
Lymph also transports white blood celss, foreign substances (such as bacteria), cancer cells, and dead or damaged cells that may be present in tissues into the lymphatic vessels and to lymph organs for disposal.
All substances transported by the lymph pass through at least one lymph node, where foreign substances can be filtered out and destroyed before fluid is returned to the bloodstream. In the lymph nodes, white blood cells can collect, interact with each other and with antigens, and generate immune responses to foreign substances.
Lymph nodes contain a mesh of tissue that is tightly packed with B cells, T cells, dendritic cells, and macrophages. Harmful microorganisms are filtered through the mesh, then identified and attacked by B cells and T cells.
Small lymphatic vessels connect to larger ones and eventually form the thoracic duct. The thoracic duct is the largest lymphatic vessel. It joins with the subclavian vein and thus returns lymph to the bloodstream.
Benefits of Dry Brushing:
- Lymphatic flow
- pore cleansing
- reduces cellulite
- boosts energy
How to Dry Brush:
- Always brush towards the center of the body and towards heart where the thoracic duct of the lymph system empties in the subclavian vein.
- Brush each area of skin 10 times before moving on to the next
- Don’t brush too hard, a soft and smooth stroke works best. Your skin should never be red or stinging from this
- Start at the feet – brush bottoms of feet, up the legs in long, smooth strokes
- Brush in circular motions on the abdomen, armpits and back first
- Then move to the face and neck with a gentler brush.
Does Dry Brushing Actually work?
From my own personal experience, I love it and it’s a way that I show myself some love during the day. My skin feels more ‘lively’ and ‘tight’ plus I get a rush of energy as the circulation is improved all over my body.
Is there any scientific evidence? Honestly, it’s quite divided. Much of the evidence is anecdotal and more research would be needed before dermatologists would consider it a legitimate medical treatment.
Bottom line, find what works best for you. If you have sensitive skin, then perhaps dry brushing is not for you. But if you’re like me and love the self care practice of it all, then you’re only spending $5-$20 on a brush to enjoy the experience.
Get Started on your own Self Care Practice
Begin by investing in a dry brush set. I like this 3 piece set because it comes with a softer brush for the face and neck. Brush your body in the morning BEFORE you take a shower.
After your ritual of dry brushing, use a sugar scrub and citrus body wash. I love Beautycounter for these products especially.
After the shower, dry off and apply a non-toxic unscented body lotion. I love Puracy. After the lotion, I’ll add a few drops of jojoba oil infused with Bergamot essential oil for a lovely ‘awaken’ feeling to start the day.
I use this ritual about 1-2 times per week.
Have you tried dry brushing before? Love to hear what you think about it! Happy brushing!