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Benefits and Cautions of Gua Sha, Drybrushing & Exfoliating Glove

Photo of Gua Sha tool

Benefits and Cautions of Gua Sha, Drybrushing & Exfoliating Glove


When people think of detoxification of the body, the first things that come to mind for many are dietary restrictions, lemon water, lymphatic drainage massage and exercise. While these practices are all wonderful to do, there are small things that can be incorporated into a daily regimen that will help to strengthen the immune system, detox the body and eliminate inflammation. The skin is the largest detox organ of the body and while it sheds dead skin cells on a regular basis, but it could use a little help every now and then to accelerate  lymphatic flow, detoxify, and renew skin cells. I would like to explore three popular tools of detox and exfoliation that have become popular in modern society, Gua Sha, Dry brushing and exfoliating gloves. I will explain what each method is, the benefits and the cautions to be aware of for each of them.


Benefits and Cautions of Gua Sha, Drybrushing & Exfoliating Glove

What is Gua Sha?

Gua sha is a traditional East Asian healing technique that dates back 700 years ago, based on the belief that energy, which flows through the body, (Qi) must be balanced and active to maintain health and vitality. Energy that is stagnant was believed to cause pain and inflammation of the body. ‘Gua’ which translates to scraping, and ‘Sha,’ meaning redness, was obtained by scraping the surface of the skin until it becomes red, and the flow of energy (Qi) is restored. There have been many tools used for Gua Sha throughout history, which include coins, spoons, bones, animal horns, and most recently the flat rose quart and jade tools designed to address specific areas of the face.


*Pain and Inflammation relief- Gua Sha is used to treat pain or inflammation, by scraping the skin, which increases blood flow known as microcirculation. It is believed that the body produces chemicals reactions that block pain pathways to the area. Reduction in chronic inflammation has also been noted after Gua Sha, which makes it great for treating fibromyalgia, joint pain, and arthritis.

*Increases Lymphatic drainage- Gua Sha increases both lymphatic drainage as well as blood flow.

*Allows Beauty serums and moisturizers to be absorbed into the skin,

*Reduced wrinkles, puffiness and improved complexion are among the many benefits.

CAUTION- Gua Sha was originally used to scrape the skin to the point of producing redness . When treating the face be careful with the amount of force used, as it may result in bruising, skin irritation and pain. Gua Sha may also lead to broken blood vessels that result in hyperpigmentation due to trauma to the skin. Make sure to hydrate your face with serum or oil to prevent friction.


What is Dry brushing?

Dry brushing to exfoliate and cleanse the body is not a new concept, it has been practiced for hundreds of centuries among different culture which include East Indians, Egyptians ,Greeks, Native Americans and Scandinavian to name a few. While each culture may have employed  a variety of tools for exfoliation, such as sand, corncobs, and dried fruit to brush the skin, the process remained the same. Today, dry brushing has  become a popular practice for the purpose of accelerating blood flow, moving stagnant lymph fluid and skin exfoliation.

To begin dry brushing, start with a natural fiber brush, using medium pressure, brush in the direction of the heart and remember to brush each section 7 times before proceeding to next section 1)Start at the feet and brush calves and shin upward using short stroke. Continue upwards brushing thigh and hamstrings. 2)Brush the stomach in a clockwise direction, as this is the direction of digestion.3) Beginning at the hip brush directly up, pass the ribcage and into the armpit ,there are many lymph nodes in this area, and they are often neglected. 4) Beginning at the wrist, brush the inner part of the arm toward the armpit and the outer part of the arm toward the top of the shoulder.


Detoxifies the Skin

Stimulates nervous system.

Stimulates Blood Flow.

Stimulates Lymphatic system.

Reveals softer more radiant skin.


If dry brushing causes redness, broken skin inflammation or swelling discontinues immediately. Dry brushing should never be painful, nor does it require harsh bristle to accelerate blood or lymph flow.

If you have cuts, lesions ,sunburn, infections (such as cellulitis) or skin cancer (Do not brush over the area)

Avoid dry brushing over areas where skin is more sensitive e.g. (Face ,breast and genital area)


What are Exfoliating Gloves?

Exfoliating gloves are mitts or gloves, designed for shower or bathing for the purpose of removing dead skin cells from the body. For those in their twenties, exfoliation of the skin is not necessary because cell turnover continues at a rapid pace, but for those thirty and above, cell regeneration slows down and exfoliating will help it along. On the market today there are large varieties of gloves to accommodate all skin types. Exfoliating gloves are made of course material such as loofa, animal or plant fiber, nylon and knitted cotton or hemp, which is perfect for those with sensitive skin.



*Exfoliating gloves are reasonably priced and can be found in many drugs stores

*Accelerate cell turnover to reveal softer smoother skin

*Allows skin product to penetrate the skin

*Evens out skin tone

*Accelerates blood and lymph flow



*Exfoliating more than twice a week can exacerbate skin conditions

*Be gentle with yourself and watch your pressure

* If you experience burning skin seek a professional

The Bodhi Tree holistic Health Solution

2535 Camino Del Rio S. ste 100

San Diego CA 92108

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