Four Week Body Upkeep Challenge: No-poo & dry brushing explained

I’m in the middle of the first week of my personal mind, body & spirit upgrade challenge. This first week has been pretty breezy so far, which was kind of what I had intended. I made most of my challenges progress to be harder as each week passed so when setting up my first week I chose goals which were already commonplace for me. In this blog I’m going to explain why I included no-poo and dry brushing in my Upkeep challenge.

NO-POO – I should start by saying the ‘no-poo’ phrase has nothing to do with your bodily functions, much to everyone’s relief right? No-poo has become more popular over the past few years in the natural/organic bloggersphere and after reading this article and this one my curiosity was piqued. People try the no-poo for several reasons, I’ve listed some of my own below. The basic idea is to stop shampooing and conditioning your hair – which does NOT mean you stop showering albeit you do shower a bit less often :). I like to workout in the morning so I think the biggest challenge for me will be resisting the urge to use the free shampoo and conditioner provided at the Fitness Center where I work. My lovely friend Betsy has been using the no-poo method for several weeks now and she brings her own bottled baking soda and apple cider vinegar (from here on referred to as ACV because I’m too lazy to type it again) to mix with water when she’s ready to shower. She’s brilliant and I’m going to be stealing her idea! Day 2 of my challenge I had already scheduled a haircut so my hair was shampooed there which means I will probably won’t be washing my hair (even with the baking soda mixture) for several days. I’m excited to get this started and even try some new shampoo and conditioning recipes I recently posted on my pinterest board! Doesn’t the Coconut Milk Shampoo sound divine?

* It’s cheaper than standard shampoos/conditioners * I want to use products more natural on my hair * Using natural products is better for the environment * It can conserve water which is also better for the environment * It can reduce scalp irritation and produce a natural shine *

My sweet friend Betsy taught me all she knows about experimenting with no-poo

My sweet friend Betsy taught me all she knows about experimenting with no-poo

DRY BRUSHING – I first read about dry brushing when reading Kris Carr’s book Crazy Sexy Diet. I’ve mentioned this book several times on my blog and if you’re interested in the reasons why I have chose this particular path to healthy living you should buy yourself a copy or checked it out from the library! Dry brushing boasts many benefits for your skin, as I’ve outlined below, and it is incredibly simple to do. You start with a body brush – there are several varieties available in almost any drugstore. Many will be labeled as wet or dry body brushes. Choose one in which the bristles are not synthetic and have a softness about them. You can control the amount of pressure put onto your skin as well, the idea is it shouldn’t lead to skin irritation but circulation.  You should brush your body in long sweeps towards your heart, I use some circular motions when I’m getting rougher areas (like my elbows), but the lymphatic system benefits stem from brushing towards your heart. I usually dry brush in the morning before my shower or at night before bed. If I do it at night I usually try to apply a moisturizer, like coconut oil, on the rough patches a few minutes after the dry brushing.

* It promotes tighter skin and can reduce cellulite * It sloughs away dry skin, improving skin texture and feel * It can increase cell renewal and blood flow * It helps your lymphatic system release toxins aiding in digestion & kidney function  *

Has anyone else tried dry brushing or a no-poo experiment? I love hearing what you think about your own missions to improve your life and your health!

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