The Gua Sha is an age-old Chinese healing technique. (Photo: Thinkstock Images)
Remember when beauty junkies across social media were swooning over jade rollers and this pretty, weirdly-shaped crystal known as the Gua Sha? Looks like the hype was real and so were its effects. For someone who is a skincare maximalist, you will surely be tempted to try it because this ancient technique will leave your skin firmer, tighter and well, of course, happier. All without going under the knife.
Allow us to explain. Gua Sha (pronounced gwah-shah) was traditionally used on the body and has its origins in China and Southeast Asia. A vigorous scraping technique, it is also known as spooning. Here, a thin curvy piece of stone or crystal (like Rose Quartz) is used to scrape away toxins from your skin and relieve pain from sore muscles.
One has to 'scrape' the surface of their skin with repeated strokes which is believed to generate cell repair. While it was earlier used throughout the body, soon enough, people were taken up with benefits they saw on their faces. It reportedly irons out fascia or the connective tissue, in turn giving you an amazing face-lift without poking needles in the skin.
Benefits of Gua Sha
Better micro-circulation: Ever noticed how amazing your skin looks after working out? That's what Gua Sha does to your skin. Take a serum or your favourite hydrating moisturiser and with soft strokes using the Gua Sha, massage it all over your face. It not only boosts blood circulation but also helps in better absorption of serums and moisturisers.
Helps relieve muscle tension: A little backache or too much fake smiling at a party can all account for muscle strain. Gua Sha comes to your rescue and helps relieve tension, working best on the temple and between the brows.
Say yes to lymphatic drainage: Similar to its close cousin, the jade roller, if you wake up with a puffy face, simply take out your Gua Sha from the bedside drawer and rub it slowly or do scrape-like motions to beat the puffiness. However, be careful when doing so under your eyes because the skin tends to be soft and aggressive motions can lead to bruising or even bursting your blood capillaries.
How to use Gua Sha
For a cooling effect, place the tool in the fridge, which helps you get a little more out of your tool since this helps for a better de-puffing process. Ensure that you use the tool on a clean face.
Cleansing is imperative because often the material used to make Gua Sha is semi-porous, which may lead to bacterial growth. Ensure that you keep the tool clean and store it safely.
Begin by using an oil or serum on your face, which lessens the friction against your face, in turn not leading to bruising. However, do not overdo it when it comes to applying the products; just apply enough to make the scraping process smoother and not make your face oily.
If you forget the process, just remember to slowly and softly rub the tool against your face in an upward motion.
Over a period of time your face may feel an increased sensation of warmth and may seem a little red. If you happen to experience redness or pain, it means you are overdoing it.