Back in the beginning of October, I mentioned writing a series of posts on a great presentation by Marcella Clark and Kirsty Hardinge of the The Body Center in Holland, MI. One topic they discussed was brushing the skin regularly and I’ve found it to actually be quite relaxing. It doesn’t take more than a few minutes and if you think about it, paying a little attention to your body’s largest organ might be a very good thing!
I bought a neat round brush with a handle from The Body Shop and while the bristles are stiff, they are gentle enough for light body brushings. If you don’t have a body brush, you can also use bath gloves or a loofah. Always brush when dry (not in the shower) and towards the center of your body. I hold one arm up and gently brush it downwards with the other hand down towards my neck and chest. After doing the same thing for my other arm, I switch to my legs and brush them upwards starting from my ankles.
As you might guess, skin brushing offers a number of health benefits. According to You Are What You Eat by Gillian McKeith, skin brushing stimulates blood cells and lymph tissues; therefore increasing the rate at which toxins are released from the body. Gillian recommends brushing even the soles of your feet and down your back as part of the routine (a brush with a long handle would be good for this). She also notes that long, gentle brushing towards the heart will also increase circulation and help the skin tone and texture. If you are interested in more benefits (such as removing cellulite and toning muscles, click here).
One thing to remember is to always brush gently- the idea is to use very little pressure and you don’t want to scratch yourself or make your skin raw. Make sure to also avoid any broken skin or areas with thread or varicose veins. Lastly, do not brush your face and be careful of any warts or moles that may be sensitive.
If you give it a try, my guess is that you will truly begin to enjoy skin brushing. It’s an easy way to help your body out and relax for even just a few minutes during a busy day.