How To

Top tips for dry body brushing

Is your skin looking decidedly scaly? Eliminate flakes, tackle ingrown hairs and jump-start your lymph system with these top tips to get more from your body brush. 

When the creams just won’t cut it and even the hardiest salt scrubs don’t hold up, this humble tool proves itself ultra-talented in the toning and smoothing departments. Quick and close to effortless, {body brushing} makes a massive difference to your skin tone and texture…it can even help diminish ingrown hairs and indentations (should you wish to). Whether it becomes a pre-shower staple or a weekly self-care moment, this is why we swear by body brushing…


The beauty bane of nigh-on everyone’s life, ingrown hairs are the irritating stick-in-the-muds that stand between you and ultra-smooth, summer-ready skin. Fear not! Exfoliation is a nifty way to keep them at bay and it’s hard to find a more thorough buff-er than a body brush. The coarse, firm fibres are perfect for effortlessly shifting the build-up of dead cells that could clog your pores and trap hair under your skin, making it an effective way to prevent burgeoning ingrown hairs.


Symptomatic of a multitude of factors – from hormones to your gene pool – cellulite is when fat deposits push against the uppermost layers of your skin, causing it to look dimpled. It’s completely normal and something we shouldn’t feel awkward about! However, if you are looking for a way to tone, body brushing is a great way to boost circulation and lymphatic drainage (we’ll get to that!), helping to balance the distribution of fat deposits for a smoother look and feel. Simply, spend more time on the sweet spots such as inner thighs and underarms − and brush in smaller, firmer circles to flush away toxins (which contribute to cellulite) and assist the breakdown of the dimple effect.


If like us, you’re long overdue a good buffing session, you might be feeling more than a little uninspired by how dull your skin is looking. With summer just around the corner, there’s no better time to devote a couple of minutes to body brushing. Beyond staving off ingrown hairs, the exfoliating process is key to sloughing away flaky dead skin cells and revealing softer, smoother skin. Plus, with those dead skin cells out of the picture, your favourite lotions and potions are able to absorb more easily. Win, win!


Encourage circulation and lymphatic drainage by brushing towards the ‘central’ lymph nodes − in the groin, armpits and the base of your neck. Use sweeping circular motions to work your way up the legs, bottom, midriff − then from wrists to shoulders and across your chest but (we’ll tell you again), be gentle − you’re stimulating the skin, not shredding it. The increased blood flow delivers extra oxygen to cells − and because the lymph system doesn’t have a central ‘pump’ − the act of brushing helps accelerate the elimination of the metabolic waste that can accumulate in tissue.


We swear by Dr. Barbara Sturm’s {Body Brush Soft} for beginners, while those who’re au fait can try something a little bit ‘stiffer’. goop’s {G.Tox Ultimate Dry Brush} is made with naturally firm yet non-abrasive sisal fibres from agave, to coax your skin from hibernation, stat.

Our recommended use? Little and often is the best tactic. We know someone (ahem) who’s gone at body brushing like they’re sanding floors − be firm but gentle and do it dry before showering − it ‘opens up’ your pores and gets skin glowing. Just remember to slather your newly smooth skin with your favourite cream or oil to keep it happy and hydrated. One of our personal favourites is Sol de Janeiro’s best-smelling {Brazilian Bum Bum Cream}. Not only will it make your bathroom feel like Rio, but its high caffeine content will help to tone those wobblier-than-you’d-like bits. If nothing but the very best is fit for your skin, then go for Augustinus Bader’s {The Body Cream}. In a clinical trial, an impressive 92 per cent agreed it helps to reduce the appearance of cellulite, 90 per cent agreed it helps to reduce the appearance of stretch marks and 98 per cent agree skin feels firmer and more plump. Sold!


Bethan Robinson

Bethan Robinson

Senior Copywriter

Bethan is a Senior Copywriter at Cult Beauty. When she’s not trying to perfect the ultimate ‘no make up’ make up look — she swears by Saie — or find new skin care to fall for, she’s likely playing video games, making the most of her housemate’s MUBI account or strolling around Victoria Park with a pastry in hand.