The practice of Dry Skin Brushing may be old news to those who practice the daily routine, but with all the skin care products and hypes out there at the moment I thought it important to re-introduce a process that is not only a great way to maintain healthy skin, but also aids in maintaining a healthy body.

Certainly, most of us know that the skin is the largest organ of the body. Some may even know that the skin plays an important part in ridding the body of toxins. As a matter of fact is responsible for one-fourth of the body's detoxification each day, making it one of the most important elimination organs. The skin is also known as the body's 3rd kidney, because of its pivotal role in toxin removal and water balance.

Dry Skin Brushing is the process of brushing the skin (like the name implies) dry. The reason for doing it dry as opposed to wet is that the skin stretches when it is wet and you don't receive the same effect. Dry brushing helps to shed dead skin cells, which can help improve skins texture and cell renewal.

It also increases circulation to skin, encouraging your body's discharge of metabolic wastes, which greatly aids the lymphatic drainage of the entire body. When the body rids itself of toxins, it is able to run more efficiently in all areas.

Dry Skin Brushing also helps to tighten the skin because it increases the flow of blood. Increasing the circulation to the skin can also help lessen the appearance of cellulite.

The process is fairly simple. Dry Skin Brushing should be done once a day just before a shower. And if you can twice a day is even better. A warm shower or bath, should be followed by a cool rinse, this will also increase the blood circulation. It is very important to find a natural bristle or vegetable bristle brush. One with a long handle will help in reaching the hard to reach areas.

Begin at the feet with a circular motion, rub gently, but firmly scrub the soles, toes, instep and ankle. With downward strokes begin just below the knee, brushing the calf, scrub around the knees with small circular motions and all around the knee joint. Use long downward strokes with scrub the thighs and with a circular motion, brush your hips and buttocks. Brush the lower back in a downward direction, including the sides and the abdomen in a clockwise direction.

Take care when brushing around the breast and do NOT brush the nipples. Brush the pectorals in an upward circular motion, clockwise for right pectoral, counter-clockwise for left. Continue with the hands and arms, then the shoulders.

Do NOT brush the skin on your face. While it is important to exfoliate the skin on your face as well, the skin on your face may be too sensitive for your dry brush. There are exfoliating skin creams and peels, or use a soft facial brush or wash cloth to gently message you face.

You should also avoid any spots that have irritation or a cut or sore.

Wash your brush every couple of weeks in water and let it DRY. More often you can brush the brush outdoors to remove dust or more accurately your shed skin cells.

Daily dry skin brushing can help keep your skin healthy, vibrant and can also help keep your body functioning more optimally. So if your not already brushing, maybe it is time to give it a try. Why not, all you really have to loose are some dead skin cells.

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© Melt Magazine 2004