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What Is Gua Sha Facial Massage?

by Toni Olukiran

2min read

You’ll often see Gua Sha tools in beauty videos and skincare routines of the most popular influencers and vloggers — but what actually is Gua Sha? Read on for the low down.

What is Gua Sha?

Gua Sha is a type of traditional Chinese skincare therapy, in which a blunt, smoothed tool is used to scrape the skin and depuff, release heat toxins, invigorate the skin, and is said to have rejuvenating qualities in its ability to reduce wrinkles. Gua Sha was traditionally used across the whole body, with specific emphasis on the back, although by those adopting it in skincare routines, it is used most on just the face. 

Its popularity now comes in the wake of the self-care and wellness industry really taking off, and adopting other forms of ancient alternative medicine and therapy from outside the western world. Gua sha has been practised for thousands of years in China and Vietnam, and its popularity in the United States can largely be attributed to the East-Asian diaspora there that continue to practice it, leading to exposure in the wellness industry. 

Why use Gua Sha on the face?

Gua Sha can help break down muscle tension and depuff, as well as smooth wrinkles — so it’s unsurprising that it gained popularity pretty rapidly among the skincare-obsessed around us. With many of us already having bedtime skincare rituals (whether it's two steps or twelve), a facial massage to detoxify is a welcome addition to many routines with the intent to relax before bed. 

Where to buy Gua Sha

Rose quartz and jade gua sha tools are very popular, and can be found in many skincare and beauty shops. Remember to also get facial oil, like rosehip seed oil, which is necessary for reducing friction. 

How to do Gua Sha

Gua Sha can do more harm than good if it’s practised incorrectly. Too much pressure on the skin, and not scraping in the right direction can lead to more unfavourable results. We recommend watching a tutorial from a skincare specialist like Lanshin, to ensure you are practising correctly.   

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Toni Olukiran
by Toni Olukiran

Toni is one of our lovely Content Marketing Assistants, and when she’s not writing posts about everything from Jamaican cooking to vegan champagne, she’s making a Spotify playlist (she was at 200, at her last count) or playing tennis in the park.

Read more from Toni


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