Keratosis Pilaris

Keratosis Pilaris is the medical term for the genetic condition that appears as rough, red bumps on the skin – this resembles red goosebumps and chicken skin. It is most commonly found on the back of the tops of arms, but can also affect tops of thighs and buttocks. This condition can be  irritating and scratching seems to make it worse, this can cause scabs that result in scarring in extreme cases.

This affects 40% of the population – 50 – 80% will affect adolescents and often appears in individuals when they are children, it is more common in women than men.

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The Clarisonic Cleansing Brush

The Clarisonic Cleansing Brush comes from the creators of the “Sonicare” toothbrush and uses a soft, gentle brush that oscillates back and forth over the skin, claiming to remove six times more make-up, dirt and oil than cleansing by hand. It’s been a huge hit in the US and has proved equally as popular in the UK since it arrived in Space NK last year. I bought a professional version, which I use on some clients during the cleansing phase of a facial with a suitable cleanser.

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Dry Skin Brushing

Dry Skin Brushing  is a very easy way to stimulate your lymphatic system and circulation, which in turn helps your body eliminate toxins. Our skin is an organ of elimination (which is often forgotten!), just like our liver and kidneys, and gets rid of more than a pound of waste products everyday, we can boost this process by a morning dry body brushing before we shower.

sisal-brush-fi-600x300Dry skin brushing can improve the skin’s appearance in many ways, the first is by sloughing off dead skin cells and creating  smoother skin that reflects the light, making it glow! Brushing also stimulates cell turnover and renewal and can boost the skin’s sebum production which helps improve the texture and tone of the skin.

By body brushing everyday, you not only improve your skin’s appearance but boost your health by an improved blood/Lymph flow and immune system. It also makes you feel amazing! and is a real boost to your energy as it is extremely invigorating – giving you vitality for the day ahead.

Now you know why dry skin brushing is so amazing, it’s time to start doing it! here’s how……..

  • Choose your brush, natural bristles are proven to be far more effective than synthetic, but should always be used dry, otherwise they can rot. My chosen brush is an “Origins Raffe Brush“, the bristles are firm enough to use light, flowing strokes without applying pressure.
  • It is vital to brush in the right direction, so remember it’s – always towards your heart in long flowing strokes, repeat the strokes a few times in each area.
  • Start from your feet (soles as well) and work upwards, I find it easier to put one foot up on the toilet seat and work on that leg first.
  • Use long, smooth strokes and brush the legs and buttocks. Concentrate on the hips and thighs to really improve the appearance of cellulite and orange peel skin.
  • Brush both arms from wrist to shoulder, the neck and shoulder area should be treated gently as the flesh is very delicate.
  • Move up to your torso but be gentle on your tummy as it can be quite sensitive! follow a clockwise direction using gentle circular strokes. This will follow the flow of your intestines and not disrupt any bowel functions.
  • Move onto your back in a downward direction, with a sweep across your shoulder blades.
  • Once finished, jump in the shower, if your very brave turn the shower to cold at the end for an extra invigorating boost! To save time moisturising, use a shower oil to nourish your skin. You may also want to apply a skin firming cream/gel to your hips, thighs and bottom.

The whole process may seem a chore, but it should only take 5 minutes maximum, and will soon become a healthy habit. You may want to increase the pressure once you have got used to the sensation.

Note – avoid areas of of cut, broken or very sensitive skin, and varicose veins. Never dry brush your face.