13 Best Dry Brushes for Smooth, Glowing Skin

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With every hyped-up, viral beauty product that gains a cult following due to celebrity endorsements or a trending video, it’s *easy* to fall down the consumer mania rabbit hole. The result? You spend hella $$ on a whole bunch of “TikTok made me buy it” purchases that either (a) fail to have “incredible, instant, life-changing results” or (b) irritate your skin/hair/health. So today, we’re talking about the best dry brushes: What exactly they are, if they’re safe, and if “smooth skin,” “reduced cellulite,” and “improved circulation” can all be yours thanks to a firm, bristled brush and a few minutes of some serious scrubbing.

Fun fact: Dry brushing is a centuries-old beauty ritual originating from India—YUP, the whole practice has been around for well over 5,000 years. This means that dry brushes have a ~tad~ more validity than other buzzy trending products like, say, pore vacuums do, thanks to the fact that the practice has legit endured the test of time. But as with everything, it’s not as simple as yes, it works, or no, it doesn’t—especially considering that science has seriously advanced in the last few thousand years—so, let’s use that to our advantage and consult science:

In addition to our how to use a dry brush explainer, I thought we needed a bona fide list of the best dry brushes on the market, and of course a quick TL;DR of our guide: “Dry brushing is the act of taking a bristled brush and literally brushing your skin in an upwards motion towards the direction of the heart,” says Dr. Turegano. Dry brushing is also a form of mechanical exfoliation, Dr. Talakoub has told Cosmo. Mechanical exfoliators work to remove dead skin cells from your skin physically with either a granular substance or a tool.

Dry brushing is done on all four limbs and the trunk of the body on dry skin. This means using absolutely no lotions, oils, or water, hence the name, explains Dr. Turegano. The friction between the brush and the dry skin created through the motion of scrubbing is what ultimately dislodges dead skin cells. If you add a liquid to the mix, the friction will be reduced, and therefore it’s no longer dry brushing, Dr. Talakoub explained to Cosmo.

The main benefit of this beauty ritual is exfoliation, however, many routine practicers claim that it also improves circulation and reduces cellulite. I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but both Dr. Talakoub and Dr. Turegano agree that there are no true scientific studies that can back this up. Dry brushing could slightly improve your lymphatic flow and therefore break up collagen bundles, the stuff that’s linked to cellulite, Dr. Talakoub explained. However, that’s about it.

“My take on it is that if it feels good and you feel like it’s a part of a regular skincare ritual for you, I think that is part of self-care, which is beneficial,” says Dr. Turegano. Basically, if it makes you feel good, you use it how you’re supposed to (i.e., you don’t have sensitive skin, stick to a few times per week, and use gentle pressure), there is no harm in the practice.

Now that you’ve had a sneak peek of the list ahead, here’s what you all came here for: The 13 best dry brushes on the market for smooth, glowing skin, below:

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