11 benefits for 11 bucks
Dry brushing is one of the latest “what’s-old-is-new-again” trends. Did you even know you have a 3rd kidney? Well, that’s the term many scientists and doctors use when referring to our skin. Why? Because it’s one of the largest detox organs of our body. When we sweat, we release toxins. When our kidneys are in overload, our skin acts as a back-up system to keep our blood clean so diseases can’t creep in. When our blood is healthy, our skin is nourished and glows.
One of the easiest ways you can help detox your body and blood—while reaping a whole bunch of skin benefits—is by dry brushing.
‘What’s that?’ you say. I’ll tell you in a sec.
But first let me introduce myself! I’m Deb Warren, one of the many behind-the-scenes gal pals of Steph Schuler, our fearless leader and founder of Rutz. As a friend and former writer and blogger for The Skin Center of Pittsburgh, Steph asked me to help contribute to the Rutz Blog.
As a blood cancer survivor and a fan of all things natural (like Rutz products) I thought I should start with this piece on dry brushing—because it’s healthy for you in sooo many ways. In fact, it very well could be one of the things that helped me experience something of a miracle with my personal brand of cancer, Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia (CLL). More on that later.
So why dry brush?
Dry brushing (or dry skin brushing) is a homeopathic detox method that stimulates and exfoliates the skin while helping the lymphatic system purge accumulated toxins that can cause illness, not to mention dull skin.
This practice has gained a lot of media attention lately, but it’s actually nothing new. Dry brushing has its roots in traditional Ayurvedic medicine, the oldest healing science known to human kind. Ayurveda originated in India over 5,000 years ago. In this system of medicine, dry skin brushing is called is also known as “garshana”—no, not a new yoga pose—but a secret method of dry massage.
I discovered the many “win-wins” of dry brushing when my CLL took a turn for the worse. I developed some bulky lymph nodes in my neck that I would conceal with my hair or scarves…yep, that bad. Turns out that I had developed the worst type of genetic mutation one can get with CLL: the deadly 17 p deletion. When my doctor told me I’d likely be facing a life-saving treatment soon, I decided to take matters in my own hands in the meantime. I researched health practices that I hoped would help my body heal itself (as I believe it naturally wants to do) and turn this deadly mutation around. One of my new practices was dry brushing.
Here’s what it does internally:
- Energizes the body
- Boosts blood circulation
- Stimulates the lymphatic system
- Like kidneys, it helps the body rid itself of accumulated toxins
- Improves digestion
- Helps relieve overworked muscles
External, skin benefits:
- Exfoliates to sweep away dead skin cells
- Opens and deeply cleans congested pores
- Invigorates the skin
- Boosts collagen production
- Improves appearance of cellulite
Dry brushing is easy – and only takes 2-3 minutes
For about $10-12, you can buy a dry brush at health food stores, some pharmacies, or online. What to look for is either a long or short-handled brush (usually wooden) with natural bristles, preferably from vegetable fibers. I love my Yerba Prima Skin Brush. Some brushes have a long, removable handle.
Toward-the-heart is the simplest method of dry brushing since it’s easy to remember.
- Before showering (preferably in the morning) start at the feet with short strokes and move around the ankle and leg as you move up, always stroking upwards toward the heart. Don’t forget those cheeks if you’re prone to cellulite!
- Move to the torso, up to the breasts, again, stroking toward the heart or in counter-clockwise circles. Avoid sensitive breast areas.
- Next stroke your neck, front of shoulders and décolleté down toward the heart.
- Go to the hands and arms, repeating the upward strokes toward the heart.
- Don’t forget your back.
- Be sure to rinse those dead skin cells from your brush.
- The best part? After showering, your skin will look and feel so fresh. And it will be more receptive to soaking up your post-shower body moisturizers like Rutz Body Nectar or Smooth Talker.
As your skin becomes accustomed to dry brushing, you can add more pressure, but never so much that your skin becomes raw or irritated. You should notice that your skin is slightly flushed after brushing—as your lymph starts flushing out those nasty toxins. When you shower, you’ll feel more invigorated, which is why dry brushing is best done in the morning!
There are more technical methods of dry brushing that work with the body’s “watersheds.” But they are far more complicated. I recommend starting with the toward-the-heart method first.
Back to my CLL story. After using this dry brushing method (among other things) for about 6 months, I’m happy to report that medical tests now show that my 17p mutation (you know, that deadly one that shouldn’t go away on its own?) has disappeared! Even the CLL experts are baffled!
So help your body. And revive your skin—with dry brushing! *
Any questions or comments? Message us here or feel free to contact me personally at email@example.com .
To you and your health, with love!
*Note: Dry brushing and other homeopathic methods should be used in conjunction with (not as a substitute for) Western medicine.