This facial massage has recently been going viral on Tik-Tok with claims of total face transformations, but its fame stretches back hundreds of years as an ancient Chinese medicine ritual.

Ever since my visit to Casa Valka (which I wrote about on LOOK), I have been obsessed with lymphatic massages and the bounty of benefits they offer our health as well as looks. Over the last few weeks, Gua Sha transformations and massage routines have begun to overtake my For You Page on Tik-Tok. When I looked into what Gua Sha was and found out it was a form of lymph drainage for your face I was sold! I caved in, bought one, and did a lot of research on this viral skincare tool to share with you guys.

Here is what I learned:

What is a Gua sha massage?

Gua sha is a traditional massage used in ancient Chinese medicine to relieve water retention in the face and promote overall relaxation. This massage targets the facial acupressure points and can be done professionally as well as at home using a Gua Sha tool like the ones mentioned below. This massage will improve the overall health of your skin and tissue as well as work to lift and sculpt your features. Gua Sha will also boost elasticity and proper blood flow along with reducing any facial inflammation you may have. This facial massage is often referred to as an “all natural facelift.”

Romee Strijid, a well-known Victoria’s Secret supermodel, has been doing Gua Sha massages on herself since at least 2019. In this youtube video, she shares her Gua Sha routine and the benefits she has found from the practice.

You can clearly see a more lifted look on the right side of her face (especially around the eyebrow) after the massage.

Where can I get a Gua Sha stone?

For me, the best place to browse different Gua Sha stones was Amazon considering I could look at reviews and different kit/stone options. Gua Sha users usually pick between authentic rose quartz, amethyst, or jade stones. I chose rose quartz because it symbolizes self-love and care, which I thought was fitting, but a lot of people like jade because it has a natural cooling effect on the skin.

I bought mine from amazon for about 20$.

There are so many other options like this one or this one.

You will also definitely need an oil to ensure your tool has some slip that way it does not tug at your skin. I recommend this rose-hip oil from The Ordinary because it is affordable, accessible and effective.

How do I Gua Sha?

  1. Start with a clean and freshly washed face as well as a clean Gua Sha stone (soap and water will do just fine).
  2. Hydrate your skin with a facial oil (4-5 drops will do) and pat it into your skin.
  3. Using light to medium pressure, slide and wiggle the stone 5-10x per area in upward motions.

Check out these videos to learn about different Gua Sha massage routines:

Pro Tips

  • Remember, upward motions are what will give those beautiful lifted results.
  • Your tool should be flat against your skin throughout the massage.
  • Do not be scared if your skin turns a little red during the massage, this just means your blood is flowing which is a good thing!
  • Check out some of the videos linked above to see some popular Gua Sha motions. See what feels good and create a routine that works for you.

How often should I incorporate a Gua Sha massage into my routine?

Ideally, this massage can be done daily, but even 2-3 times a week will make a difference. Consistency is key! This massage is also flexible in that you can do it both in the morning or at night, whatever is most convenient for the user. I like to do it in the morning after having the stone in the fridge at night, that way you have that lifted look the entire day.

During such a busy time of the semester, Gua Sha can be a beautiful practice that allows us to be mindful and slow down to take care of ourselves, even if it is just for a couple of minutes 🙂

Fernanda Gonzalez

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