The ancient practice of gua sha has gained popularity for the last few years and it's not just for the face! Body gua sha, an extension of this technique, has been recently introduced into the beauty and wellness world. Gua sha, originating from Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), involves gently scraping the skin with a smooth-edged tool. It offers many benefits for your skin and overall well-being. Below are benefits of using a body gua sha tool and essential dos and don'ts for maximizing its effectiveness.
Benefits of Using a Body Gua Sha:
Improves Blood Circulation and Lymphatic Drainage
Body gua sha involves gentle scraping of the skin, which helps stimulate blood flow and lymphatic drainage. Gua sha helps to increase oxygenation to the skin, aiding in the detoxification of toxins from the body. A study published in the Journal of Traditional and Complementary Medicine highlighted the effects of gua sha in enhancing microcirculation, showing a significant increase in microcirculation in the treated area for the first 7.5 minutes following the scraping treatment (Nielsen).
Reduces Muscle Tension and Pain Relief
Using a body gua sha can help alleviate muscle tension and reduce pain. According to a clinical trial reported by WebMD, a group of 48 people with chronic neck pain were split up into two groups. WebMD reports that after a week, the people that had gua sha treatment saw their pain ease significantly for a short time (Benisek). The gentle scraping motion can relax muscles and provide relief from discomfort. It’s our nature to want to add hard pressure to those areas of muscle tension and inflammation, but it’s important to apply gentle pressure using the gua sha to reduce muscle tension and soreness as you don’t want to add trauma to the area.
Reduces Inflammation and Water Retention
Diet and lifestyle habits such as salty foods, alcohol and traveling can cause inflammation, water retention and puffiness. You can see how it affects our faces but it also affects our bodies. In my family, it’s genetic that our ankles and feet are sensitive to high-sodium foods (if you’re Latina, IYKYK!), alcohol, wearing heels and elevation. The next day, our bodies are swollen to the point it’s uncomfortable. Using a gua sha is a tool that has helped with reducing the swelling and getting rid of the water retention.
Improves Skin Texture and Prevents Formation of Texture
Regular use of a body gua sha tool can contribute to improved skin texture and tone. By promoting lymphatic drainage and encouraging the flow of nutrients to the skin, it can help minimize the appearance of cellulite, resulting in healthier, smoother skin. Just like using a gua sha on the face, consistency is key here! As I’m getting older and noticing the lack of elasticity and firmness in certain areas in my body (which is completely normal and nothing to be ashamed of!), I also see a body gua sha as a preventative tool to help reduce the likelihood of texture forming in those areas. La Sculptura Body Gua Sha is great because it has different curves that fit in different areas on the body comfortably.
Do's and Don'ts of Using a Body Gua Sha:
Use Body Oil or Lotion for Glide
Before using the body gua sha, apply a generous amount of body oil or lotion to the skin. This helps the gua sha tool glide smoothly, preventing any discomfort or skin irritation. Único Body Oil Spray
is easy to apply and mess-free so this body oil is a great option! If you prefer to take more time on your gua sha practice, Único Hand + Body Lotion
gives you the liberty to do that.
Apply gentle pressure while scraping the skin and maintain an angle between 15 to 45 degrees. Because of the weight of the black stone, let the weight of the La Sculpture Body Gua Sha [linked] and gentle strokes do the work.
Use upwards motions, starting with the back of the legs, moving up to the back, switching to the front of the legs, then stomach, working your way up to the neck. Use about 3-4 strokes for each area.
[Include graphic showing upwards strokes]
Cleanse Body Gua Sha After Use
Make sure you wash your La Sculptura Body Gua Sha [linked] after using to make sure it is properly clean prior to your next use.
Don’t Apply Excessive Pressure
Avoid using excessive force while using the gua sha tool, as it can lead to skin irritation or bruising. We can tend to be aggressive with our bodies because we want to see instant results but it’s important to be kind to our bodies and treat them with gently care, when using this scraping tool.
Don’t Use on Areas of Sensitive Skin or Sunburn
Avoid using the gua sha tool on areas of sunburn, cuts or gashes as it may worsen the condition and cause further irritation.
Incorporating a body gua sha into your wellness routine can bring forth a multitude of benefits. By incorporating this practice with a quality body oil or lotion, you can enhance the experience and achieve optimal results. Always remember to listen to your body and consult a healthcare professional if you have any concerns before trying new wellness practices.
- Nielsen, Arya et al. “The effect of Gua Sha treatment on the microcirculation of surface tissue: a pilot study in healthy subjects.” Explore (New York, N.Y.) vol. 3,5 (2007): 456-66. doi:10.1016/j.explore.2007.06.001
- Benisek, Alexandra. “Gua Sha: Benefits and Risks.” WebMD, 25 April 2023, http://www.webmd.com/balance/what-is-gua-sha. Accessed 6 December 2023.
- Oxford Journals: "Effectiveness of Traditional Chinese “Gua Sha” Therapy in Patients with Chronic Neck Pain: A Randomized Controlled Trial."
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