This holistic wellness tool and ancient beauty ritual grounded in Ayurvedic techniques do more than smooth your skin. Dry brushing is a traditional detoxification ritual that encourages optimal energy and longevity in the entire body. Some of the benefits of dry brushing include boosts in cell health, detoxification, and improvements to the lymphatic system. You have probably seen Gwyneth Paltrow and other people using it for dry body brushing, so if you wonder what it does, I’m here to explain what it is and its benefits!
In simple words, dry skin brushing is, just like it sounds, the practice of dry brushing your skin. It helps the body release toxins; the bristle brush helps stimulate the pores giving you smooth skin, get increased blood flow, and helps get rid of dirt, oil, and dead cells. It’s a natural alternative to chemical exfoliants and medicines and helps improve overall health through a calm, relaxing self-care ritual. Trust me — it’s a great way to look and feel your best with minimal effort.
Keep reading to learn my tips to make the best out of your dry brushing routine and my favorite products to use right after it. Let’s get started!
Dry brushing / My favorite morning ritual
You may have seen me share on Instagram how I use this tool each morning—dry skin brushing has become my favorite part of my daily routine!
My favorite dry brushing benefits are the wonderful way it gets your blood flowing first thing in the morning, it always perks me up and makes my skin glow, and it doesn’t take extra time; the whole process is done in a few minutes. You can easily prep your morning coffee or tea as you do dry brushing techniques or help your little ones with breakfast as I do. It’s the best way to start my days.
I tried facial dry brushing for a month and noticed a difference in the brightness + clarity of my skin! It gave me softer skin, so now, a dry brush session is a daily joy I crave!
Health Benefits of Dry Brushing
There are many benefits to dry brushing; some help you feel better from within, while others help you glow.
These are the most common benefits of dry brushing:
1. Lymphatic drainage + circulation
Your lymphatic system is your body’s natural cleansing + detoxification system. It helps detoxify wastes and toxins, recycle nutrients, and protect your immune system from harmful pathogens.
Due to modern sedentary lifestyles, the lymph nodes often become stagnant. Your lymphatic and circulatory systems have no pump (like the cardiovascular system has a heart), so it needs to be manually stimulated to support optimal functioning. Walking, sweating, stretching, rebounding (light jumping on a trampoline), and using dry brushing techniques are great ways to open pathways for optimal lymphatic flow + drainage of excess fluid. When the lymphatic system is stimulated, wastes and toxins will be eliminated more efficiently through the body’s natural elimination pathways.
As our lymph contains white blood cells and the lymphatic system aids in destroying pathogens before returning into the blood circulation, dry brushing and facial dry brushing are great tools to boost your immune system and help clear congestion.
Certain dry brushing techniques will gently exfoliate the skin, remove dead skin cells, and gently encourage cell turnover. Too much exfoliation (like harsh exfoliation methods or chemical peels) can do more harm than good.
The right dry brushes and dry brushing techniques will gently exfoliate without damaging your sensitive skin layer. Proper, gentle exfoliation will strengthen your skin’s barrier and make your facial products that much more effective, as your skin will be able to absorb them. Make sure not to do it on an open wound, and if you have sensitive skin, you’ll want to use a softer brush.
3. Skin Clarity + Brightening
Think of dry brushing as treating your health from the outside – in! Skin and lymphatic stagnation can lead to the appearance of cellulite, pesky breakouts, blackheads, uneven skin tone, aging spots, and almost any visual skin condition you can think of. By stimulating lymphatic flow and circulation, you are increasing blood, oxygen, and nutrient flow to the cells. This boosts your skin’s clarity and brightens your complexion. Leaving you (and your skin’s surface) feeling vibrant and balanced!
If you struggle with bumps or breakouts on your arms, dry brushing can really help improve clarity and texture!
And facial dry brushing brings double the benefits—exfoliating your skin and brightening your complexion. If you only have 2 minutes, incorporate this ritual!
How to Dry Brush
Don’t be overwhelmed or think you need to do this “perfectly”! Done is always better than perfect. Start with a few strokes and eventually work your way into a more in-depth routine. Watch this video tutorial if you need help getting started >
How often should I dry brush? Daily is often enough. You only need to do this for about 2 minutes (or even less).
When to dry brush? Incorporate this ritual whenever it suits your schedule best. Morning or night—just make sure your skin is dry! I prefer to dry brush in the morning as it energizes me and is best for the flow of my day.
Step-by-step // BODY
Use: Dry Brush
- Brush your arms and legs upward with short, gentle strokes toward the heart.
- Brush your chest or back with gentle inward strokes towards the heart.
- Dry brush morning or night before you shower or apply moisturizer.
- Use light movements to stimulate blood flow and lymphatic drainage, don’t scrub your skin!
Step-by-step // FACE
Use: Facial Dry Brush
- Start with your neck—brush downwards to open up lymphatic pathways.
- Start with one side of your face—move with upward strokes from the bottom of your chin to the top of your forehead. Using light brush strokes, work from the center of your face out towards your hair. Alternate sides.
- Use light strokes, don’t scrub your skin. Dry brush before cleansing + moisturizing your face.
That’s it! Try dry brushing at least for a few days, and I’m sure you’ll notice a big difference in how you look and feel. Especially when combined with a healthy lifestyle and diet!
It’s important to know that not all products are great to use after dry brushing. Some might leave your skin sensitive if used immediately after, so I recommend you wait a while before, or better yet, use products that will nourish your skin in the way it needs to after a dry brushing session.
Below are my favorite recommendations that I use and have noticed help my skin look its best:
Safe products to nourish after dry brushing
- Clarifying Serum
- Countertime Mineral Boosting Hydrating Essence
- All Bright C Serum
- Balancing Facial Oil
- Blue Tansy Body Oil
Have you tried dry brushing? Share the benefits of dry brushing you have experienced!