Dry body brushing: the ancient technique your skin will love

While skincare often focuses on the face, all the skin on our beautiful bodies deserves love and care. Lavish body scrubs and moisturisers are wonderful, but what about dry body brushing? This easy method helps you achieve glowing skin from the inside out.

Dry body brushing is an ancient exfoliation technique that dates back thousands of years. And since the method hasn’t really changed in all that time, it’s pretty clear we’re on to a good thing. We suspect one of the reasons is because it’s so easy. You only need two things – your body and a firm bristle brush.

“It’s a great treatment that’s simple and doesn’t cost a lot because there’s no product used,” says Kimberley Conboy, endota skin expert and education coordinator.

But why do it? Dry body brushing has some great benefits for our inner and outer wellbeing. Apart from being an excellent way to exfoliate, it also encourages lymphatic drainage, awakens the nervous system and encourages cell renewal.

“Waking up the circulation system and getting toxins to move out of the body through lymphatic drainage has many benefits,” Kimberley says. “Our lymphatic system sits quite close to the surface of the skin and as the brush moves towards areas of lymphatic drainage, we help move stagnant lymph fluid up towards these areas.”

The lymphatic system is a crucial part of the immune system and include lymph nodes that can be found all over the body, including the arm pit and groin. When lymph fluid is pushed through the nodes, it helps your body filter out toxins. It also removes bodily waste and carries white blood cells that help prevent infection.

Your body's best protector

Our skin does an excellent job of protecting our bodies from all kinds of nasties, so it makes sense to take good care of it in return. Dry brushing helps the skin regenerate and gets us in the habit of more whole body self-care.

“The skin on our body is slightly thicker than the face, so it can become a lot drier and more dehydrated,” Kimberley says. “We expose our bodies to the harsh sun during summer, and usually little sunlight during winter. These areas need hydration and exfoliation to promote circulation and cell renewal.” Kimberley says that dry body brushing once a week is a great addition to your self-care routine. “Body brushing in the morning before a shower is ideal, because it wakes you and your skin up. Follow it with your favourite moisturiser and you’ll feel fantastic.”

If you’re new to the process or have a new brush, you might feel a tingling feeling or experience some redness. This is normal, as you’re waking up the circulation and bringing blood toward the surface of your skin. “For the first few times just ease off on the firm pressure. You can increase the pressure as you become used to the sensations,” Kimberley says.

Dry body brushing is also the perfect spray tan preparation, sloughing away dead skin cells and smoothing over rough patches for more even application.

The process

Try this simple method for dry body brushing, ideally before a bath or shower:

  1. Start on the left side of your body.

  2. Using light strokes, brush your left arm or leg upwards toward the heart, repeating on the same spot 7 times.

  3. Repeat the process while moving to different parts of your body, before switching to the right side. Brush clockwise on the stomach. Be sure to adjust pressure to suit your own comfort levels.

  4. Shower or bathe immediately after body brushing to refresh the skin and wash away exfoliated cells.

  5. Finish with your favourite moisturiser.

If you’d like to experience dry body brushing in-spa, the Detox spa package features a full body dry brush exfoliation then a detoxifying body mud mask. While you're all wrapped up you will enjoy a facial and scalp massage then a wonderful body moisturisation. Or bring the spa home and incorporate dry brushing into your daily ritual with our Vegan Dry Body Brush, available online and in spa.