dark haired woman looking in the mirror

Gua Sha and Jade Rollers are becoming increasingly more popular in the natural skincare industry for their purpose of massaging facial lymph. 

Lymphatic massage around the face is great for promoting circulation to the tissues and reduce puffiness. Learn more about the lymphatic system in our previous blog: Skin Health Benefits of Lymphatic Massage

Tools such as Gua Sha, Jade Rollers, or even hand massage are great for facial lymphatic massage. Whenever you are practicing facial lymph massage it is essential to also use a high quality facial oil or serum such as our Golden Serum, Luminous Serum, or Simplicity Serum. This helps nourish the skin while promoting blood flow instead of tearing the skin.

What is Gua Sha?

Gua Sha is a Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM)  technique that dates back hundreds, if not thousands of years! Gua Sha can be utilized on the entire body - from the chest and back, to the legs, arms and face.

  • Gua is a flat tool typically made from jade, quartz or another type of stone of a cooling nature. 
  • Sha is considered to be the marks left by brush strokes along the body to get circulation and lymphatic tissue moving.  

While performing Gua Sha on the body, small capillaries under the surface of the skin may sometimes break and cause tiny bleeding (bruising) under the skin and fades away after a few days. Why cause what could essentially be considered “bruising” to your body? Well, by causing these tiny micro lesions, our immune system sends white blood cells to the surface of the skin and kick-starts the healing where it’s needed. 

Gua Sha on the face should be practiced with much softer strokes than the body. While Gua Sha treatments on the body may cause broken blood capillaries, we do not recommend such aggressive scraping on the face. 

When using Gua Sha on the face the skin may look plump and pink after the treatment, but no bruising or capillary breakage should be present. 

We recommend applying one of our serums - Golden SerumLuminous Serum, or Simplicity Serum - to your face before using the Gua Sha to add a slip to the skin so you don’t tug at the soft tissues. 

What is Jade Rolling?

Jade rolling effectively works the same as the Gua Sha tool but rolls along the skin instead of scraping. As the name says, Jade Rollers are also often made out of jade, quartz or other cooling stones. 

Jade rolling is a gentler technique to massage lymph in the face and neck. Jade rolling a few times a week can reduce facial puffiness and inflammation, improve circulation. They are all-natural, pain-free, and work to smooth out fine lines. 

What is Gua Sha good for?

  • Good for puffiness. If you keep it in the fridge or run it under cold water, the cooling could also reduce inflammation
  • Good for eyebrow drooping 
  • Smooth out fine lines
  • Reduce swelling and puffiness. 
  • Also good for massaging muscles in the face reducing the prominence of wrinkles
  • Massage sinuses 
  • Promotes circulation to scar tissue
  • Good for scarring

Who should not use Gua Sha?

  • Do not use with open wounds/sores
  • Use caution if you have very thin skin that tears easily
  • Caution if you are on medication that causes your skin to break and bleed easily, or while taking blood thinners
  • Elderly people with very thin skin
  • Don’t do it after injectables or botox right away 


gua sha how to use - lower half of your face



gua sha how to use - upper half of face


How To Use

  • Spray cleansed face with 2-3 pumps of your favourite Miiko Face Toner
  • Follow immediately with 3-4 pumps of Golden SerumLuminous Serum, or Simplicity Serum. Massage serum into face and neck
  • Draw the Gua Sha tool along the face in gentle movements (see above diagrams)
    • Repeat each stroke/area of the face 3-5 times
    • Complete one half of the face and then move onto the next. Check to see if you notice a difference!
  • Go upwards against gravity along the face, then out and down, end with flushing down the neck towards the heart
  • Be sure to use a light touch, especially on the delicate areas of your face (like your eye and browbone area)
  • Your face may a little pink or red after you’re done, so we recommend using your Gua Sha in the evening before bed
  • For extra tension relief & massage:
    • Back of your neck - use upward strokes with flat or curved edge of Gua Sha
    • Jaw muscles - use the curvature (3 bumps) of the Gua Sha to press in gently

Does it actually work?

This is a new trend in the skincare industry but the techniques and tools date back for centuries. If you are considering incorporating Gua Sha or Jade Rolling into your skincare routine ask yourself these two questions…

  1. What are the results I am looking for? If you are looking for a natural and relatively inexpensive way (in comparison to botox) to promote circulation to your skin and reduce the signs of aging this product is probably worth a shot
  2. Can you make it a habit? Consistency is key and results are best maintained when using the Gua Sha 2-3x/week or up to once daily.

Healthy skincare habits are not formed overnight. Finding time for your skin care rituals every day and having a positive vision for yourself and your skin's appearance takes practice.

Having a supportive community is one of the funnest ways to build new habits. Join us in your journey and share your goals and results. 

January 29, 2020 — Kimiko Foster

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