If You’re Over 30, Read This…
Check out these techniques and tips for using your gua sha face tool, plus learn about the benefits and why you may want to add this technique to your routine.
In this Blog:
-What Is Gua Sha?
-The Benefits of Gua Sha
-How to Use a Gua Sha
-How Often Should You Do Gua Sha?
-When to Avoid Gua Sha and Potential Side Effects
It wasn’t until I hit my mid 30’s that I started to pay attention to those little lines being chiselled into my forehead or beside my eyes from my natural facial expressions and decreasing collagen production. In the society we live in, it takes a ton of awareness and discernment to remind ourselves that looks and youthfulness aren’t everything. It is very important to me to be authentic to who I am and create and maintain a healthy relationship with myself, one that isn’t based on my outer perception, but rather on my worthiness within. I believe it’s possible to have a healthy relationship with who you are on the inside, while also taking care of yourself and preserving your youthfulness on the outside. Personally, I do this through natural living, healthy eating and exercise. I have been experimenting with a traditional Chinese medicine wellness practice called gua sha. It is touted to smooth wrinkles and tame puffiness, while increasing circulation.
But what exactly is gua sha? How can a little flat stone provide so many benefits and is it worth adding into my already busy routine? We did some research about this facial tool and found some reputable experts to explain their take on the gua sha method. Read on to find out.
What Is Gua Sha?
Gua Sha originated in ancient China and is actually one of the older forms of traditional Chinese medicine ever recorded. The folk claim is that it “scraped away diseases”.
The technique has become increasingly popular in the West, as more medical practitioners learn about the potential health benefits. It was originally a body treatment and has since been adapted into a facial therapy. The gliding technique is a method that promotes lymphatic drainage, which basically releases trapped fluid under your skin so that it can be released and cleaned up in your lymph system.
The Benefits of Gua Sha
Modern-day scraping with a rose quartz or jade stone might be less invasive than past treatments, but it can still have some pretty impressive results.
- Stimulates circulation: Gua Sha may assist in increasing circulation of blood under the skin leading to a brighter complexion.
- Helps produce collagen: Gua Sha can help the body product more collagen which may soften fine lines and wrinkles.
- Decreases inflammation: Gua Sha may temporarily relieve inflammation that leads to pain and tightness according to studies.
- Diminishes dark circles: Gua Sha can help to tighten skin and diminish dark circles under the eyes by stimulating the production of collagen.
- Sculpts facial muscles: Gua Sha can help to release tight facial muscles and give the temporary appearance of a more sculpted face when used on the jawline and cheekbones.
How to Use a Gua Sha
Don’t be intimidated when first trying your gua sha tool - it’s not difficult to do properly with a bit of practice. Use gentle pressure and generally try to brush in the flow of lymph. Lymph nodes are located beneath the surface of the skin. When they are stimulated, it helps to release stuck and excess fluid, thereby reducing puffiness. This fluid enters your bodies natural detoxification system, cleaning it up. The lymphatic system has no “pump” to keep fluids moving like your circulatory system does, that is why using techniques such as gua sha, dry brushing, or exercising is important to keep this stagnant fluid in motion. Reference the image below for general guidelines on the strokes to take when using your gua sha.
After cleansing our face, we apply 5-6 drops of our facial serum onto our face and neck and then use a rose quartz gua sha tool to brush the face and neck according to the direction in the image below.
How Often Should You Do Gua Sha?
It is generally recommended to start with once a week to get used to the technique. Once your skin is adjusted, then you can up the frequency to 2-3 times a week. If your skin is loving it and it feels good for you, you can use your gua sha daily.
When to Avoid Gua Sha and Potential Side Effects
Do not use your gua sha if you are sunburnt, have a rash, or blood coagulation issues. Always consult your healthcare practitioner prior to a new routine or if you are concerned.
After using a gua sha tool, your skin may appear a little pink or red for a few moments, this is normal. It is not normal to bruise or have extended periods of redness after using your gua sha. If this is the case, discontinue use immediately. Always use gentle pressure when doing the technique. It should’t hurt, therefore if it is hurting your skin you are probably doing it incorrectly or your skin is too sensitive - stop immediately. Watch videos on how to do it correctly or talk to your healthcare professional before continuing use. Generally speaking though, gua sha is usually safe for most skin types when performed correctly.