If you’ve been following natural beauty trends over the last while you’ve probably noticed the enormous surge in popularity of gemstone tools like jade rollers and Gua Sha stones. They might be generating a buzz across your social media channels now, but these pretty pieces of beauty equipment are not new. In fact, their use dates back hundreds or even thousands of years.
So, what are jade rollers and Gua Sha good for, and should you be using them? We think you should! To explain why, we need to talk about your lymphatic system and your Qi.
What does the lymphatic system do?
Your lymphatic system is a crucial part of your immune system. Throughout your body, lymphatic fluid flows along lymph vessels and is filtered through hundreds of little jewel-like lymph nodes which help to remove waste products and toxins from your body tissues. Because the lymphatic system is linked to your circulatory system, and sometimes your circulation can be a little sluggish, it’s not unusual for lymphatic fluid to flow slowly or get stuck, collecting in your skin and resulting in irritation, puffiness and a dull complexion.
What is Qi?
In Chinese medicine, Qi is your life force – a flow of vital energy that must be in balance for you to experience good health. Qi flows through your body along the twelve meridians, which are like energy highways, connecting all your body’s major systems. Eastern medical treatments revolve around correcting the flow of Qi to achieve optimal wellbeing.
What does this have to do with your beauty routine?
If you’re looking for radiant, healthy skin, then you want to get rid of any build-ups of lymphatic fluid. Gently massaging your face in the right way will direct the fluid away and into the lymph nodes, whisking away toxins and puffiness and leaving you feeling relaxed and pampered. Done regularly, facial massage can provide the following benefits:
According to traditional Chinese medicine, there is a reference point on the face for each of your body’s systems, meaning that when you massage the face, you awaken your meridian lines and encourage whole-body healing (and you know we love Whole being beauty!)
Ideally, you want to perform your facial massage with tools that will maximise the effectiveness of all these benefits – and that’s where the jade rollers and Gua Sha stones come in. But which one is right for you? Let’s take an in-depth look at each one.
The jade roller is said to date back to the Chinese Qing Dynasty in the 1700s, although the use of jade as a massage tool can be traced even further back to the Mayan and Egyptian civilisations. The Chinese refer to jade as the “stone of heaven” and associate it with wellbeing, wealth and prosperity, hence why it was used in many ancient treatments.
A roller normally has two ends. One end is a larger roller for your cheeks, jaw and forehead, and the other end is for smaller areas like your brows and under your eyes. The rollers are smooth, oblong pieces of jade (or other gems – but we’ll touch on that later) that are naturally cool and feel wonderful on the delicate skin of your face. Some people even keep their jade rollers in the fridge between uses.
How to use your jade roller
Step 1: Cleanse your face gently and thoroughly with your fave cleanser (current Verite favourite is the Phyto + Honey Gellee cleanser) and pat dry.
Step 3: Take your roller and, using the large end and light pressure, roll it from the centre of your chin, up along your jawline, stopping at your ear. Repeat five or six times on each side of your face.
Step 4: Using the large roller, start beside your nose and roll across your cheek towards your ear. Repeat five or six times on each side of your face.
Step 5: Swap to the small roller and very gently cover the area under your eye, from the inner to outer corner. Repeat ten to fifteen times below each eye.
Step 6: Still using the small roller, roll from the inside of your eye, across your eyelid and out to your temple. Repeat ten to fifteen times for each eyelid.
Step 7: Return to the large roller and, starting at the top of your nose, roll across your eyebrow and down towards your temple. Repeat five or six times on each brow.
Step 8: Using the large roller, roll upwards from your eyebrows to your hairline, moving across your forehead with each stroke.
Step 9: Again, using the large roller, start in the centre of your forehead and roll out and down towards your ears. Repeat five or six times on each side of your forehead.
From the Chinese Gua, meaning ‘scrape’ and Sha, meaning ‘sand’, Gua Sha is a practice that has roots thousands of years old. It is performed with small, flat pieces of jade or other crystal that are shaped to fit the contours of your face.
Gua Sha has similar benefits to jade rolling but is more massage-oriented. Whereas a jade roller rolls over your skin, a Gua Sha stone slides across it, creating warmth and pressure and promoting increased circulation.
How to do a Gua Sha facial
When using the Gua Sha stone, hold it almost flat against your skin for maximum surface contact. Remember to keep pressure light, especially when working with the delicate skin around your eyes. Whenever you reach the end of a stroke, give the tool a little wiggle to massage that spot and help the fluid to drain away. Use your free hand to support the skin on the opposite side of your face as you work. Each set of strokes should be repeated from three to ten times on each side of the face.
Step 2: Apply 1-2 pumps of your favourite serum, (we love our Papaya and Blue Tansy pressed serum) to your face and neck in an upward and outward pattern. You want to use enough oil so that the Gua Sha stone glides easily across your skin without pulling or stretching it.
Step 3: Warm the Gua Sha stone between your hands, allowing the last of the oil to transfer onto it.
Step 4: Starting at your collarbone, hold the flat surface of the tool at a slight angle against your skin and glide it up either side of your Adam's apple to stop at your jaw.
Step 5: Next, address the area directly underneath your jaw by sweeping from below your chin to your earlobe.
Step 6: Moving up slightly, sweep from the middle of your chin, across your jawline towards your ear.
Step 7: Use the tool on the area below your cheekbone, starting beside your nose and moving towards your hairline.
Step 8: Repeat this action across your cheekbones.
Step 9: Using the smallest rounded part of your Gua Sha tool, very gently glide it across the skin below your eyes, from the corner closest to your nose all the way to your temples.
Step 10: Apply the notched section of your tool to your brows, sweeping across until you reach the end of your brow bone, then use a flat surface to sweep up your forehead to your hairline.
Step 11: Glide up from your eyebrows towards your hairline, moving across your forehead for each new stroke.
Step 12: Starting at the centre of your forehead, sweep outwards towards your temples.
Step 13: Lastly, make sure to chase the remaining toxins away by holding your tool flat and sweeping it down your next from jawline to collarbone.
How to clean your jade roller or Gua Sha stone
Once you’ve finished your treatment, it’s important to clean your jade roller or Gua Sha stone because, as with anything you use on your face, it will pick up and transfer bacteria from one part of your skin to another. After each use, gently wipe your it with a soft cloth dipped in warm water, and then dry it thoroughly. If you have any product build-up, you can wash it away with a gentle, natural soap – this should be done weekly, at a minimum.
How often should you perform a jade roller or Gua Sha facial?
You’ll get the most benefit from regular treatments, but it’s okay if you don’t have time to do them daily. We recommend that you aim for two to three times a week for maximum benefit.
*note : You should not use your roller or Gua Sha over Botox, Fillers or if you have very irritated or broken skin, or active breakouts.
How to choose your tool
We stock jade rollers and Gua Sha tools crafted from several different gemstones, and choosing one for yourself is as personal as selecting a crystal. It’s important to select one which has properties that resonate with you. Our current range includes:
Jade – the “stone of heaven” and a symbol of prosperity, health and longevity. Said to enhance peace, wisdom and emotional balance. We use aventurine Jade which is more ethically sourced .
Rose quartz – the “love stone” which represents unconditional love, joy and compassion. Said to enhance imagination, intellect and self-confidence.
Amethyst – the “protection stone” which represents positivity, harmony and intuition. Said to enhance creativity and communication and banish negativity.
Whichever tool you choose, we are certain that you will love the blissful relaxation and beautiful, glowing skin that comes with using a jade roller or Gua Sha stone !
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