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How to gua sha

How to use gua sha

Facial massage using a gua sha is a beauty trend that seems most definitely here to stay. Here you can get to know what is gua sha, how to do a gua sha facial of your own at home and the benefits using a gua sha can have on your skin. 

gua sha and face oil in palm of hand with white fabric background

What is gua sha? 

Gua sha is an ancient skin scraping technique. It was traditionally used in Chinese medicine to cure heat stroke or seasonal illnesses and, unlike the luxurious rose quartz, jade and obsidian gua shas we're familiar with today, could be done with any kind of implement like an animal bone or spoon. Today though it's marketed as the must-have beauty tool that helps to sculpt the face, boost circulation and help lymphatic drainage. You can do it as part of a spa facial or even from the comfort of your own home. 

Benefits of gua sha for your face

There are plenty of benefits of using a gua sha for your skin including: 

  • Improving circulation
  • Encourage lymphatic drainage
  • Increasing blood flow
  • Reduce inflammation
  • Relax muscles
  • Stimulate collagen production

Gua sha can be performed on the body as well as the face and is reported to help manage chronic health conditions as well as give you skincare benefits. 

But does gua sha work? Well, the results can differ from person to person but you just have to scroll through the countless #guasha videos and photos of gua sha before and afters to see the different it can make to the complexion. 

Which gua sha tool is best? 

At Blomma Beauty we offer a few different types of gua shas so you can choose the one that's most suitable for you and your skin's needs. 

The first is from natural skincare brand Olixa which is made by hand from rose quartz and is best for smoothing the skin. Rose quartz is often linked to the heart chakra and associated with love kindness and compassion. It provides a soothing energy to help smooth and calm the skin. Olixa's gua sha has a serrated edge which is ideal if you're looking to tackle forehead lines our to ease tension on your head as you can comb it through your hair. 

We also stock a rather rare type of gua sha from Bumi Naturals which is best for draining and de-puffing the skin. Unlike most gua shas which are made from rose quartz or jade, they've made theirs out of obsidian. Obsidian protects from negative energy and it naturally helps retain heat in your skin so is particularly beneficial for boosting circulation and reducing puffiness. 

How often can you gua sha?

The answer is as often as you'd like. It can be a great everyday skincare ritual if you hold a lot of tension in your face, jawline or neck but if you've got sensitive skin you might want to limit the massage to one or two times per week. 

Do you need oil for gua sha?

You'll need some kind of oil, serum or oil based cream to create the slip required on your skin to pull the gua sha across it without being too abrasive. Here are some suggestions on face oils that are compatible with gua sha. 

Bumi Naturals facial oil is a blend of deeply penetrating plant oils like pomegranate, rosehip and hemp that helps brighten and hydrate. Ideal if you're wanting to target lines and wrinkles. 

If you're looking for something a little richer and creamier, Bumi Naturals' Night Repair is made with broccoli and cucumber which are best for smoothing and soothing skin. Ideal if you're concerned with de-puffing and calming the skin. 

Olixa's face oils are both naturally retinol rich and regenerate, soften and brighten the skin. Ideal if you're looking for something to keep skin soft and plump. If you've got oily or combination skin opt for the Explorer Blend and the Amazonian Cacay if you've got normal or dry skin. 

How to use a gua sha

Always do your gua sha massage on cleansed skin.

how to gua sha infographic

  • Start with one side of the face, apply 3-5 strokes per area before moving to the other side of your face. The tool should be used at a flat angle - approximately one finger width between the Gua Sha and your skin - and with a light pressure.
  • Use the long flat edge of the Gua Sha for your neck and pull it upwards towards the jawline. This encourages blood flow to the face.
  • Using the small round indents, pull the Gua Sha along the jawline, starting at the chin and drawing it up to your ear. 
  • Take the long flat edge of the Gua Sha and pull it along your cheek from nose to ear. Then use the small round edge and press it flat under your eye. Use a gentle rolling and pumping action, moving from the inner eye to the outer eye.

For brows, use the serrated edge and pull from the inside brow to the outside or use on the forehead, holding it at a perpendicular angle to the skin and rub the pointed edge vertically across any forehead lines.

You can also comb the serrated edge through the hairline before finishing the ritual by drawing the long flat edge down the neck from under the ears, to encourage lymphatic drainage.

Because gua sha is a skin scraping technique with a hard semi precious stone like rose quartz or jade you can experience some redness, bruising or even burst capilliaries if you are too aggressive so go easy at first and get to know how much pressure your skin can handle. Always clean your gua sha after every ritual with a gentle cleanser