Gua Sha – you know, that stone beauty tool you’ve seen women moving around their face – is definitely having a skin care moment. But in actuality, the traditional Chinese medicine technique of applying gentle pressure to the skin using a scraping motion has been used for centuries to help usher blocked “qi” (aka energy) out of your body. Like its beauty tool counterpart, the Facial Roller, Gua Sha has many benefits to help you achieve healthy, glowing skin.
What It Is
A Gua Sha tool is a smooth, heart-shaped “scraper” fashioned from polished jade or quartz to glide easily over your skin. Its specially-contoured edges allow it to hug the facial bones and provide a deeper massaging action hitting all your muscles and crevices, whereas a roller delivers more of a smoothing action.
Gua Sha In Self-Care
Studies have shown that Gua Sha has a slew of self-care benefits, like improving circulation, stimulating lymphatic drainage, reducing chronic pain and neck pain, relieving tension, aiding in migraine recovery, and some even say reducing liver inflammation and perimenopausal symptoms.
Gua Sha In Skin Care
Because Gua Sha is known to help improve lymphatic and blood circulation, it’s the perfect sidekick for your skin care routine to massage, sculpt, and tighten the skin, aid in the skin’s penetration of serums and creams, and help in reducing the appearance of fine lines, sagging, and puffiness over time.
Gua Sha In Motion
Gua Sha can be put to work right after masking to smooth in any leftover serum, and contour and firm your skin. Run it along the jawline to help reduce sagging, alongside the cheeks in an upward motion to boost circulation and blood flow, under the eyes and just above the cheekbone to decrease puffiness and dark circles, and even around the eyebrows for an instant lift. We love this super-simple tutorial from beauty maven Erica Moyer – check it out for her favorite Gua Sha and Roller techniques and tips!
When To Put The Gua Sha Down
If you have just had surgery, take blood thinners, or have a blood clotting disorder, Gua Sha is not for you. And, if you see any bruising – a glaring sign of microtrauma – try using less pressure or skip the Gua Sha altogether. Finally, always consult with your dermatologist or physician if you notice something of concern after Gua Sha.