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Why You Should Add Dry Brushing to Your Daily Routine for Holistic Wellness Benefits

Updated: Oct 30, 2023

In the realm of selfcare and wellness practices, dry brushing has emerged as a simple yet effective technique that offers a myriad of benefits for both your skin and overall wellbeing. In this article, we will delve into what dry brushing is, explore its numerous advantages, learn how to perform it properly, and discover the tools needed to get you started on this, easy to implement, rejuvenating journey.

What is Dry Brushing?

Dry brushing is an ancient wellness practice that involves using a natural bristle brush to gently massage and exfoliate the skin in a specific pattern. This technique is typically performed on dry skin before showering or bathing.

Origins of Dry Brushing: A Legacy from Ayurveda

Dry brushing is not just a trendy wellness practice; it has ancient roots deeply embedded in Ayurvedic traditions. Ayurveda, often referred to as the "science of life," is a holistic system of medicine that originated in India over 5,000 years ago. Within Ayurveda, various self-care rituals and practices aim to promote balance and well-being.

Dry brushing, or "Garshana," as it is known in Ayurveda, is one such practice that draws inspiration from this ancient system. Garshana involves the use of raw silk or natural fibre gloves for the purpose of exfoliating the skin and stimulating the lymphatic system. This traditional Ayurvedic practice is believed to have several benefits, including improved circulation, detoxification, and enhanced vitality.

The underlying principle of Garshana aligns with Ayurveda's emphasis on balance within the body's energies, or "doshas." According to Ayurveda, regular Garshana can help balance the Kapha dosha, which is associated with qualities like heaviness and stagnation. The stimulating and invigorating nature of dry brushing is thought to counteract these tendencies.

Modern Adoption of Dry Brushing

Over time, the practice of dry brushing found its way into modern wellness routines as people began to recognize its potential benefits for skin health and overall well-being. While the traditional Ayurvedic practice may use silk gloves, modern dry brushing typically involves natural bristle brushes. Despite the materials used, the core principles and benefits remain consistent with its Ayurvedic origins.

The Benefits of Dry Brushing

1. Exfoliation: Dry brushing helps remove dead skin cells, promoting smoother and softer skin. It unclogs pores, allowing the skin to breathe and absorb nutrients more efficiently.

2. Improved Circulation: The gentle pressure applied during dry brushing stimulates blood flow, which can contribute to a healthier complexion and reduced cellulite over time.

3. Lymphatic System Support: Dry brushing is believed to support the lymphatic system, aiding in the removal of toxins and waste products from the body.

4. Stress Reduction: The rhythmic motion of dry brushing can be relaxing and soothing, reducing stress and promoting a sense of wellbeing.

5. Enhanced Absorption of Skincare Products: By removing the barrier of dead skin cells, dry brushing allows skincare products to penetrate the skin more effectively, maximizing their benefits.

How to Dry Brush Your Body: A Step-by-Step Guide

Before you begin, gather your dry brushing essentials: a natural bristle brush, preferably made of materials like cactus or sisal fibers. Ensure your skin is clean and dry.

1. Choose the Right Time

Dry brushing is typically done before showering or bathing. It's best to do it in the morning to invigorate your body and mind, but you can choose a time that suits your routine. Consistency is key.

2. Brushing Technique

Use light to moderate pressure and long, sweeping strokes. Brush each area of your body several times but avoid brushing too vigorously, as this can irritate the skin.

Remember that dry brushing should never cause pain or discomfort. If you experience any irritation or discomfort, reduce the pressure or avoid sensitive areas. With regular practice, you can enjoy the benefits of smoother, healthier skin and improved overall wellbeing.

Pay Attention to Sensitive Areas: Be gentle on sensitive areas like the face and neck, using a softer brush if necessary.

Here you can find a recommended dry brushing step by step method:

Start with Your Feet

Begin at your feet, as they are farthest from the heart. Use long, gentle strokes, moving towards your ankle. Brush each area of your foot several times before moving on.

Legs and Thighs

Continue brushing up your legs, always moving towards the heart. Use light to moderate pressure and maintain a gentle, sweeping motion. Pay extra attention to areas with cellulite or dry skin.


Brush your buttocks in an upward direction towards your lower back. Use circular motions if desired, but be gentle on this sensitive area.


Brush your abdomen in a clockwise, circular motion. This follows the direction of your colon and may aid in digestion. Continue upwards towards your chest.


You can use a long-handled brush, for your back. Start at the lower back and brush upwards, reaching as far as you can comfortably.

Chest and Arms

Move to your chest, brushing gently towards your heart. Then, proceed to your arms. Begin at your fingertips and brush towards your shoulders. Pay attention to the elbow and underarm areas.

Neck and Decolletage

Be very gentle when dry brushing your neck and chest. Use a softer brush or lighter strokes in these sensitive areas. Always brush towards the heart.


Dry brushing can be done on the face, but it requires a specialized facial dry brush with very soft bristles. If you choose to dry brush your face, use gentle, upward strokes.

3. Finish with a Shower or bath: After dry brushing, take a shower to wash away the exfoliated skin cells and apply a nourishing moisturizer to lock in hydration.

4. Frequency: Dry brush your body daily before your shower or bath. At least 2-3 times a week for optimal results. Consistency is key to reaping the full benefits of this practice.

What to Use for Dry Brushing

Choosing the right brush is crucial for an effective and comfortable dry brushing experience. Look for a brush with natural bristles and a long handle for easy reach. Some popular options include cactus bristle brushes and sisal brushes.

When Not to Use Dry Brushing

While dry brushing can provide numerous benefits for many individuals, there are situations when it may not be advisable or when caution should be exercised:

  • Skin Conditions: If you have open wounds, cuts, abrasions, sunburn, rashes, or skin infections, it's best to avoid dry brushing in those areas. Dry brushing over irritated or damaged skin can worsen the condition and lead to discomfort or infection.

  • Certain Medical Conditions: Individuals with certain medical conditions should consult a healthcare professional before attempting dry brushing. This includes people with eczema, psoriasis, dermatitis, or other chronic skin conditions, as the brushing action may exacerbate these issues.

  • Varicose Veins: Avoid dry brushing over varicose veins or areas with compromised circulation. Brushing these areas could potentially damage blood vessels or aggravate the condition.

  • Bleeding Disorders: If you have a bleeding disorder or are prone to easy bruising, be cautious with dry brushing, as it can increase the risk of skin injury.

  • Skin Sensitivities or Allergies: Individuals with highly sensitive skin or allergies to the bristles of the brush or any topical products used during dry brushing should refrain from the practice or choose suitable alternatives.

  • Pregnancy: Pregnant women should be cautious with dry brushing, particularly in the abdominal area, where the skin may be more sensitive. Consult a healthcare provider before incorporating dry brushing into your routine during pregnancy.

  • Recent Surgery or Injuries: If you've had recent surgery or suffered from significant injuries, it's advisable to avoid dry brushing until you've fully healed. Dry brushing can be too abrasive on healing or scarred tissue.

  • Inflammatory Skin Conditions: Conditions with active inflammation, such as cellulitis, should not be dry brushed. It's essential to let the inflammation subside before considering dry brushing.

Consult a Healthcare Professional: If you have any doubts or underlying medical concerns, it's wise to consult a healthcare professional before starting a dry brushing routine. They can provide personalized advice based on your specific health and skin condition.


Dry brushing is a holistic wellness practice that can transform your skin and contribute to your overall wellbeing. By incorporating this ancient technique into your selfcare routine, you can reap the rewards of improved circulation, exfoliated skin, and a sense of relaxation. Remember to choose the right brush, use gentle strokes, and perform dry brushing consistently for the best results. Your path to radiant skin and wellness begins with a simple brush and a consistent commitment to selfcare.


1. Harvard Health Publishing. "The Lymphatic System: How Your Lymph System Works." (

2. American Academy of Dermatology Association. "Can Dry Skin Brushing Keep Your Skin Healthy?" (

3. Dermatology Times. "Dry Brushing: A Dermatologist Weighs In." (

4. Byrdie. "The Benefits of Dry Brushing, According to Dermatologists." (


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