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Tips to help you get to grips with Gua Sha

Verity Douglas
Writer and expert4 years ago
View Verity Douglas's profile

That pretty pink 'pebble' you've seen on your Instagram feed? The {Gua Sha} is giving the jade facial roller a run for its de-puffing money...

Yep, it's called a Gua Sha and it, just like the aforementioned roller, has been a key part of traditional Chinese medicinal methods for moons (/millennia). The term gua sha refers to the practice itself - a method of attaining 'sha', which can best be compared to the redness that follows a vigorous cleanse or a quick facial massage - a sure-fire sign that your skin cells are getting an oxygen boost as the blood rushes straight to the rescue. A prime example of the theory that pressure enhances performance (there's nothing like a deadline to enhance our productivity), the {Gua Sha} puts cells through their paces - booting their bottoms to kick-start repair and help trigger regeneration.

Deceptively simple, the {Gua Sha} may look like butter wouldn't melt in its innocent mouth but believe us, it's guilty of serious skin-changing efficacy. Shaped to hug your contours, when it's 'scraped' across your face and neck (much less traumatic than it sounds!), this grown-up gadget works to brighten, tone and tighten while defining puffy jawlines and revealing bashful bones (*Why, hello there hollows!").

Weaselling its way into our daily skin care rituals, the {Gua Sha} ticks a wealth of beauty boxes; it's natural, Eastern and semi-precious... not to mention infinitely Instagram-able. It's great for dispelling that too-late-night aftermath - use to de-puff and detoxify - as well as for firming your neck, boosting lymphatic drainage ("Bye-bye breakouts!") and bringing much-needed relief from your muscular tension. Great for the nervous teeth-clenchers among us...

Use as part of your morning and/or evening skin care regime, to help enhance absorption of your serum, oil or moisturiser. Best-used with something that's slippery, smooth the stone (in upward motions!) from your clavicle to chin, then up and out along your jawline, over cheekbones and from centre of your forehead to your hairline. Tread gently around the eye area (NO tugging the delicate skin) and instead, store the stone in the fridge so it's cold and apply the broadside to your under-eyes - just think of it as über-fancy cucumber.

Whether you opt for the {Jade} or the {Rose Quartz} depends on your taste (or your level of cynicism). In Chinese medicine, the properties of each stone are believed to further supplement the skin (and mood!) enhancing properties (close your eyes sceptics!)...

A crucial part of beauty rituals around the world, rose quartz has been used for centuries to repair, de-stress and decongest complexions, thanks to its remarkable healing properties. A symbol of love (it is often referred to as ‘ice of the gods’) the exquisite, powder pink stone is a favourite with crystal healers, who swear by its ability to promote healthy heart function, inspire optimism and diminish depth of lines.

Or, if you favour 'Camp Jade', this {Gua Sha} is fashioned from 100% pure jade crystal - valued more highly than gold in ancient China - and is linked to kidney function (the elimination of toxins is essential for glowing skin) to maintain skin's health and clarity. Great for those susceptible to breakouts and congestion (as well as all those with, shall we say, a 'hedonistic disposition'), this soothing and de-puffing stone helps keep things clear (and you feeling phenomenally smug). What hangover?



Verity Douglas
Writer and expert
View Verity Douglas's profile
Cult Beauty’s Content Editor and a Cult Beauty OG, Verity loves nothing more than the marriage of language and lip balm. A quintessential Libran, she’s a self-professed magpie for luxury ‘must-haves' and always pursuing the new and the niche — from the boujee-est skin care to cutting-edge tech. Balancing an urge to stop the clock with her desire to embrace the ageing process (and set a positive example for her daughter), Verity's a retinol obsessive and will gladly share her thoughts about the time-defying gadgets, masks and treatments worth the splurge...