The Wonders of Gua Sha

TW’s holistic expert Mandy Pitcher gives us the lowdown on an ancient healing method that works wonders for the body and mind.   

Gua Sha has become very popular in the wellness industry in recent years but it’s actually nothing new, having been used in traditional Chinese Medicine for years. It is a natural alternative therapy that involves gently scraping the skin with a smooth-edged massage tool. The strokes on the skin stimulate microcirculation of the soft tissue, which increases blood flow. 

Gua Sha is used to address stagnant energy (called chi) in the body that many believe may be responsible for inflammation. Rubbing the skin’s surface is thought to help break up the energy-reducing inflammation and promote healing. 

A little effort goes a long way

Gua Shas and other tools, such as facial rollers, are made from all sorts of crystals (the kind that are suitable for use on the face and body). On the face they can sculpt, lift and firm, helping to reduce puffiness, diminish dark circles, minimise lines, improve lymphatic drainage and release tension. When used on the body, they can help tone fatty areas, decrease the appearance of cellulite and reduce water retention. And for those sitting at a desk for long periods, they can bring relief to stiff necks and sore backs. They are such powerful tools. 

The tools need to be used correctly to achieve the desired results. Using an oil to make sure you get the right glide both on the face and body is important; you don’t need lashings of oil, just enough so as not to drag the skin. Many facial tools come with instructions on how to use them but I always advise contacting a professional who has trained in this area. 

The routine doesn’t need to take long; three to five minutes is sufficient, and when used regularly you really will see and feel a difference…I promise! Start with daily use, then after a week ensure you carry out the routine two to three times weekly. Regular use supports the lymphatic system and keeps the skin healthy, whilst also improving collagen production and elasticity. It makes a lovely, relaxing routine that you can perform morning or evening. 

Crystal clear benefits

A variety of different crystals are used in Gua Sha and other facial tools, the most popular and widely known being Rose Quartz and Jade: 

l Rose Quartz is the stone of love. It carries a gentle and nurturing energy, and is believed to be mood-lifting and protective. It is connected to the heart chakra and helps release deep seated emotions. It encourages self-love, self-forgiveness and acceptance. Soothing and calming for sensitive skin, Rose Quartz increases circulation and with the right pressure can also reduce puffiness. 

l Jade can help with hyperpigmentation and increase blood circulation, as well as helping to reduce fine lines and wrinkles. Sometimes referred to as the lucky stone (it’s believed to bring happiness!), it can boost the nervous and immune systems and help with hormonal balance. Jade is effective for releasing toxins, easing the mind and bringing a sense of harmony and peace. 

My two personal favourites are currently Green Moss Agate and Sodalite; the former can give you a boost of energy and stimulate new beginnings, while the latter brings calmness and order to the mind (it can also help with insomnia). I use it in the form of a facial roller in the evening. 

Crystals will last you a lifetime if you take care of them properly. Clean them with a mild soap and warm water. You can also energetically clean your crystals by running them under cold water and then submerging them with a pinch of sea salt. Bathe crystals under a full moon each month for 24 hours to help recharge their energy. The only time you’ll ever need to replace your precious tool is if you drop and break it!


Mandy Pitcher

mandypitcher.com 

Tel: 07545 261205 | Email: mandypitcher@me.com

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