There’s no reason to hold off on body cleansing rituals that support your system’s natural desire to detox. There are a number of self-nurturing beauty rituals – you may be doing already – that rev up the body’s capacity to flush out toxins and bring in the glow.
- Dry brushing
Moving in long strokes toward the heart, dry brushing uses a specially designed brush to stimulate the skin’s lymphatic (read: natural detox) system and speed up the process of toxin release from tissues. And while it’s increasing blood flow ever so gently, dry brushing also leaves skin wonderfully soft by removing dead cells and preparing it for the ready absorption of nourishing oils and other healthy moisturizing ingredients. Performed first thing in the morning before your daily shower, this self-loving, nourishing act supports positive thought and action and helps eliminate toxic behavior – from negative emotions to unhealthy food choices.
Drinking water helps flush out toxins (thank you, kidneys!). It also makes up 30% of the dermis, the skin’s outermost layer, so if you want fresh-looking skin, water is essential. When it’s dehydrated, the body retains water, preventing transepidermal water loss, a process that normally moves water to the surface of skin to keep it fresh looking. Without this, the skin’s upper layers become dry – and look it. Drink eight glasses of water a day to reverse/avoid doing this to your good looks. And eat lots of fresh fruits and vegetables — they’re both high in water content.
Stretching increases blood flow to muscles and increased blood flow means a very nice glow and an added bonus of increased internal detoxification. Destination spas traditionally offer plenty of early morning and end-of-day stretch classes that act as tension-relieving bookends to the day. In real life, stretching performs much the same role. In the morning, it’s a low-key wakeup that can help you be more nimble and flexible (we’re talking body and mind, here). At night, it’s the ultimate cool down, an easy way to release the day’s stress and tension, opening up overused and underused muscles. Stretching should always be gentle. It does not involve bouncing. It is mindful and steady and powered by your breath. Even just stretching your hands flat – on a flat surface or against each other – will relieve tension you’ll experience in your entire body.
- The Epsom Salt Bath
A twenty-minute soak in a warm bath laced with Epsom salts is one the easiest and healthiest cleansing rituals we know. Here’s why. Epsom salt is a compound of magnesium sulfate. Both minerals are easily absorbed across the skin and have great health advantages. In addition to easing muscle pain, sulfates also help the body flush toxins, including environmental contaminants and pharmaceutical residue. Stress depletes magnesium levels. An Epsom salt soak helps restore this essential mineral as it boosts serotonin bioavailability, making you happier and more relaxed.
Sleep is critical to the rejuvenation of all of the body’s systems, including detoxification and elimination. Recent studies indicate that the space between brain cells may increase during sleep, allowing it to flush out toxins built up during the day – literally clearing the mind. Taking a warm bath 90 to 120 minutes before bedtime is a great way to prepare for a rejuvenating sleep cycle; this increases core body temperature, which then drops when you get out, signaling the body that you’re ready for sleep. Add a calming essential oil like lavender to seal the deal.