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Recently, Gua Sha has become a staple of almost everyone’s beauty routine. But what is a Gua Sha stone, and does it work? While there isn’t a lot of research on all the benefits a Gua Sha stone can provide you, it is a practice that has been recorded in ancient history.
What Is a Gua Sha Stone?
A Gua Sha stone is a smooth stone with two smooth sides and a shaped or curved edge. The stone itself has a distinctive shape that is instantly recognizable. Each of these sides is used differently during the Gua Sha treatment. Many Gua Sha stones found online come in various colors, such as soft pink or jade green.
Gua Sha is thought to originate from the Paleolithic period. People would use stones to scrape the skin of someone ill to relieve them of the disease. Ancient China relied on it as a sort of physical therapy.
The greatest thing about the treatment is that it doesn’t typically hurt, but it has some benefits. While research has not yet determined all the benefits of using a gua sha stone, it’s become a popular method of aiding in lymphatic drainage and the staple of many beauty gurus.
How Do You Use a Gua Sha Stone?
Gua Sha can be difficult to understand if you’ve never used it before. Knowing the techniques are as simple as looking them up, but if you want to know an easy way to start with Gua Sha, check out this handy guide.
1. Use It Often
For best results, Gua Sha experts say to use the stone once a day, but to see results at all, you should try to use your Gua Sha stone at least two to three times a week. The routine is simple, so it shouldn’t take long. You can easily incorporate it into your daily skincare routine by adding just a few extra minutes.
2. Use Oil
Before using your Gua Sha tool, you need to spread facial oil or some other smooth liquid over your face. While this oil doesn’t particularly add any health benefits, it can help you when you’re dragging the tool along your face.
As you age, your skin grows thinner and weaker on your face, so you need to treat it gently and ensure you’re not tugging too hard at the skin when you use your Gua Sha tool. Without oil, you’d simply pull the skin without any slip, negating many of the benefits you hope to achieve with the process.
3. Start at Your Neck
As with anything regarding your face, you should start from the bottom up to avoid dragging your skin downward and causing premature aging. By swiping upward on your neck, you can aid your body in lymphatic drainage and possibly improve the appearance of your skin in that area.
If you don’t want to use your Gua Sha stone on your neck, try starting at your jawline instead. All you need to do is swipe across your jawline — never back and forth — with the ridged end of your tool. Repeat this motion a few times each day you use your Gua Sha, and you might see an improvement in your jawline.
4. Be Gentle With Your Eyes
The skin around your eyes is the most sensitive part of your face. That said, when you tug too hard on it, it may tear or fall out of shape. Because your eyes are so delicate, you should use featherlike strokes when using the Gua Sha near them. While you can apply pressure everywhere else, you shouldn’t do it on your eyelids or undereye skin.
5. Target What You Need
If you aim to relieve tension in your face, you may have to use firmer strokes and presses. If you want to shape your face, follow your bone structure. Depending on the outcome you want from your Gua Sha, you may have to follow different techniques. You can follow guidelines online on how to target which result you want. Gua Sha techniques aren’t always one-size-fits-all.
What Are the Benefits of Using a Gua Sha Stone?
Not every benefit of using the Gua Sha tool has been thoroughly researched, but many people say that they can see a difference when they use it. If you look at before and after photos, you may notice that a person who has used Gua Sha looks healthier in more ways than one.
By using firmer pressure in some areas of your face, such as around your eyebrows, you can potentially relieve tension. This relief may help you experience fewer headaches and migraines, and it could make a difference if you hold a lot of stress in your face. You may find yourself physically relaxing more.
Stimulating your skin with the Gua Sha stone could aid your circulation. Similar to how using a dry brush can get your skin energized, gliding across your skin with a Gua Sha might improve your circulation in the same way.
Using your Gua Sha correctly while targeting the right areas could serve as a lymphatic massage. These types of massages can relieve congestion and drain fluids resting in your skin. Your body can heal itself in some cases, and when you’re feeling sick, using the Gua Sha could be just what you need to help get your body back in working order.
Some people believe that the appearance of their skin and jawline improves after using the Gua Sha over time. You may see improvement in your skin, too, after completing DIY facelifts with your tool. However, improved skin appearance isn’t guaranteed with Gua Sha use, so you shouldn’t count on having it as a result. Make sure that you’re hydrating your face with moisturizer and doing your Gua Sha routine in addition to your usual skincare treatments.
Try Gua Sha for a Refreshing New Habit
When in doubt, follow a video first. The Gua Sha stone is a helpful tool that can help your body in several ways, but it won’t benefit you if you aren’t using it correctly. While the benefits have yet to be proven, the fact that Gua Sha has been around for much longer than trends would have you believe is enough to prove that it has some benefits and can’t hurt to try out. You never know: you could find a new favorite part of your skincare routine in trying out Gua Sha.
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