My husband and I have been using Therapeudic grade essential oils over the past few months. Recently, a friend introduced us to a technique called, "Body Brushing". We sorta thought this was a bit odd and never really considered a spa brush before or using it for circulation - but it made sense.
Body Brushing is best when you use a natural bristle spa brush, such as this one from Pier One Imports. Now you can just dry brush your body or use any citrus essential oil and apply to the brush head. We normally put about 3-4 drops of oil in the palm of our hand and then rub the brush over it to spread the oil onto the bristles.
To "Dry Brush" - you simply start at your feet and literally brush your skin. The strokes you use though are short little strokes in an upward motion. The idea is to help the circulation in your skin and you always want to brush in the direction of your heart - so short strokes upward. Yes, natural bristles will feel a bit scratchy, but it really is invigorating too. When you get to the stomach area, brush in circles, as that is where your intestines are and they are wrapped in that way. Everywhere else you brush up. Do this technique all the way up your legs, on the areas you can reach on your back, then do the stomach and arms. In the chest area, keep brushing up, even though you are level with your heart. The whole technique takes just a couple short minutes and then you can shower and be on your way.
We have noticed that we are less tired during the day and on days that we don't brush, it's very odd because we are really more tired.
I have a problem with sitting on my computer so long that my ankles and calves get swollen and tight. I am using this technique to help the circulation on my legs and it seems to help. We have been told it normally takes six months of "dry brushing" for you to notice dramatic results.
Our friend who told us about this technique had very poor skin, mostly on her arms and was going through radiation treatment for breast cancer. It was about 6 months before friends who hadn't seen her in months really noticed the difference in her skin. Even many of the sun spots that were on her arms were gone and lightly faded. Whether it was a combination of the citrus oil she was using and the brushing - she claims it was the brushing technique that helped her skin.
We normally forget that the skin is our largest organ because it's on the outside. We need to take care of it too. Our skin gets 1/3 of our blood's circulation. Our skin is also one of the first indicators of our body needing nutrients.
Dry Brushing has been used in Europe for more than 30 years, but it was new to us. I can honestly say that after doing this today, my whole body feels invigorated. It's pretty incredible and a cheap thing to do!
This spa brush we have has a wooden handle and a black cord to hang it up. The bristles are natural (most likely boar hair) and the opposite side of the brush has little wooden nubs. I haven't personally used this other side, but it would be great for a nice little massage. And for a small $6, this is one small thing I can do for myself and also help my body as it gets older.
The length of the brush is 12 inches.
Note: I am not giving medical advice and only explaining why we use this brush and technique. There are lots of videos and informative places to learn more about this technique that is also used in Spas. Other people may use them with shower gels or soaps and that is fine too. It can be used in or out of the shower. If you have any medical questions, please consult your physician.