HOW OFTEN SHOULD WE BE EXFOLIATING OUR BODY AND WHAT IS THE BEST DIY TREATMENT FOR HOME!!
Exfoliating the skin of the body is an important part of removing the dead cell build up, especially on areas exposed to the environment such as legs and arms. This will allow for your body moisturiser to penetrate better leaving your skin more hydrated and looking healthy.
Lets take a look at examples of exfoliation that has been used since ancient times, through different cultures.
The Polynesian used seashells ground up and other indigenous cultures used grain meals, dried herbs & plant fibres.
The Indians used spices as a way to slough off the uppermost dead layers of skin leaving the skin softer and smoother.
Why do we need to exfoliate and how often should we exfoliate?
Normal skin cells divide, moving to the surface every 28 days. We believe in working with the body, so we recommend wet body scrubs to be done at least 28 days – makes sense doesn’t it! If on a detoxification or cleansing diet, it would be done weekly for that time, or if your skin has been particularly dry, then perform the wet exfoliation weekly.
Dry skin brushing is entirely different and should be done daily as a home treatment. This will increase your circulation and lymphatic congestion as well as give you that morning ‘get up and go feeling’ we are all after – rather than hitting the snooze button on our alarm, grab your Dry body brush and follow the technique below.
TYPES OF EXFOLIATION TREATMENTS
1. Dry skin brushing – we will discuss this today, as it is easy to do at home and should be done daily
2. Wet scrubs – we will discuss this today, as this is easy to do in the shower at home weekly or monthly.
3. Salt glow exfoliation treatments
5. Chemical/enzymatic exfoliation
SKIN BRUSHING – Remember this is done DRY
Dry skin brushing is one of the simplest of exfoliation treatments traditionally practised by Scandinavian people as a daily ritual not only for its exfoliation effects but also to invigorate and stimulate the lymphatic/immune system.
Skin brushing is done dry and need only take 10 minutes at the start of your day and prior to any body treatment, wrap, body moisturiser etc. It will assist the body by removal of surface dead cells, improving circulation bringing oxygen & other nutrients to the skin and it stimulates the lymphatic flow which assists with the removal of wastes & toxins so indirectly aiding the immune function.
Always work towards the heart & where possible follow the direction of lymph flow. Use Brisk straight strokes about 15 – 20 cm long overlapping slightly, then use brisk circular strokes, the size would vary depending on the area you are working on.
Gently stroke with the brush followed by effleurage strokes with the hand. This is a more nurturing style and great on more fragile skin areas. Start with brushing under the foot and then up the leg. Brush the abdomen in a clockwise direction. Brush the chest area, working the edge of the breast. Brush the fingers, arms and hands. You may need help with your back or else reach for the areas you can and brush up.
WET SCRUBS WITH LOOFAH’S:
Wet scrubs is a mechanical exfoliation process that can be used with or without Loofah or loofah gloves. They are very different from your dry body brushing as they are performed wet and gets an erythema (pinkness) in the skin.
Getting ready for wet ‘scrubbing’ your body
In the bathroom, you can set the mood for a pampering session with lighting your candles and playing relaxation music. Run the bath for a relaxing soak for after your exfoliation technique. Dampen your mitt with water and have your cleanser & or exfoliate ready. EarthSentials has a Non toxic, free from harmful chemicals body wash and body exfoliation volcanic granules that is perfect to use together with an exfoliation glove. Otherwise you can simply use sugar (make sure you don’t have any skin conditions that the sugar will feed), and a body wash. You can also do this in the shower first and then hop in the bath for a soak after. Starting with the legs & feet, place the warm towel compress (dampened) over one leg at a time, pressing down firmly to warm and dampen as it is more effective on damp skin. Pull the towels off and (apply exfoliate – if using a mechanical exfoliate with the loofah) work up with the loofah towards the heart. I usually recommend only one glove/loofah and one hand free to work the area well. Once pink, place warm compress (warm damp towel) on again & remove drawing back and dry. Moving on to the next area. The stomach & chest are done very gently, followed by the back of the legs, back & arms.
Now.. Time to get exfoliating! Your Skin and Body will love you for it!
Stay tuned for other methods of exfoliating that you can add into your routine in the coming months!
Happy Exfoliating! xx