You don’t often find the beginnings of new beauty love affair between our lazy, 7AM, half-blind treads to the bathroom and into the shower. Such encounters belong on the dressing table, where all our latest impulse buys, ‘long-term’ investments and forgotten crushes are laid out, vying for our attention in hopes of being The (holy-grailed) One.
However, this month, one trend has proven itself worthy of breaking the mould. It comes in the form of a dry brush, which is used to, well, brush your body while it’s dry. Sounds too simple to be worth the hype, and a little too Gwyneth-Paltrow-y, but in true beauty junkie spirit we bit the bullet and gave this beauty trend a shot. Read on for the results of our mini investigation…
Who loves it?
Supermodels like Molly Sims and Miranda Kerr. Skin experts like Joanna Vargas and our very own Dominika Minarovic. And of course, good ol’ Gwyneth (we love you, really).
What are the benefits?
As contradictory as it sounds, if you’re not a morning person then dry brushing is just the thing for you. The brush strokes on your skin will stimulate blood flow and circulation, energising both mind and body as you get ready for the day ahead. For those who are hesitant about giving up their beauty sleep for this ritual, don’t be: “it needn’t be too time consuming and just takes a few minutes before jumping into the shower,” wrote Miranda Kerr, in a blog post for KORA Organics.
This boost in circulation also helps speed up lymphatic drainage, which is important in reducing morning puffiness all over your body and detoxing your blood. It can also prevent the formation of cellulite, varicose veins and skin discolouration – talk about bonus points!
Finally, dry brushing is a quick and easy way to ensure you’re exfoliating your skin regularly. Any dead skin cells or dirt is buffed away, leaving your skin soft and encouraging it to renew itself naturally. What’s more, it can help your skin be more receptive to products – think faster absorption and higher effectiveness of body oils and lotions!
There are plenty of good dry brushes out there, but our champion comes from The Organic Pharmacy. It’s a sturdy brush with a hand strap and a detachable long handle, which means effortless brushing of every nook and cranny on your body, whichever way you prefer to use it.
But that’s not the best part. We’re in love with the super soft natural bristles, which we’ve heard were made from cacti! They’re firm enough to ensure thorough exfoliation, but gentle enough for sensitive skin types to use. Sounds crazy to be rubbing cacti over your skin, but trust us on this: it feels 100% amazing, and 0% prickly.
When, and how often should you do it?
There’s no hard and fast rule to when you can or can’t dry brush. However, plenty of sources recommend adding this into your morning routine, as it’s meant to be energising and good for speeding up lymph flow and drain overnight build up. Around 1-2 sessions a week is about right for normal skin types, while those with more sensitive skin should stick to just once every other week.
How to dry brush:
1. Get nekkid. Stand in your bathtub, shower, or bathroom floor if you have tiles – the idea to make clearing up bits of dead skin easy afterwards.
2. Start from the bottom of your feet and brush your calves in light, upward strokes. Move on to your thighs, tummy…you get the gist. They key is to always brush towards the heart, so pay attention especially around your chest area.
3. Brush each area around 3-4 times, and try to overlap your strokes so every little bit of skin gets attention. Remember to use light strokes, especially if your skin is particularly sensitive.
4. After you’re done pampering yourself, safely store your dry brush in a, erm, dry place, and hop into the shower to rinse off all that dead skin. We recommend finishing up with a rich body oil or lotion, to restore nutrients and hydration back into your skin.
– Jennie Lim