Christine Ruggeri, CHHC via Dr. Axe – Have you seen commercials or social media posts that show a woman with flawless, wrinkle-free skin using a face roller? This interesting gadget is gaining popularity recently, but believe it or not, it actually has ancient roots.
Precious stones and crystals, like jade, were used in ancient China to give the face life and promote skin health.
Like the ancient practice of gua sha, face rolling is really about taking a moment to focus on self-care and the health of your skin by massaging it gently to increase circulation, fight puffiness and ease tension.
What Is Face Rolling?
A face massage roller is a tool that’s used to massage the skin, especially the face. It’s made with stone balls, usually out of jade or rose quartz, that are attached to a handle.
Some face rollers have two stones, one on each side, and they are often different sizes to get into the smaller surface areas of your face.
If you search for face rollers online or at a local brick and mortar store, you may come across a few options with different colored and sized stones. The most common types of face rollers include:
- Jade: This green stone is known for its cooling properties. You’ll notice that jade stays cool even after massaging the skin for several minutes.
- Rose quartz: Rose quartz is a hard stone that retains its temperature, so you can keep your roller in the refrigerator and you’ll get a nice cooling sensation when using it.
- Amethyst: Amethyst helps oxygenate the skin and is used to remove dead skin cells, making your face brighter and more even toned.
- Obsidian: This black crystal is often used to ward off stress, and when used on the skin, it helps reduce fluid retention and improves skin tone.
Does It Work?
There are plenty of face roller benefits, including its ability to boost blood circulation, cool and smooth the skin, and reduce puffiness. However, face rolling won’t treat skin conditions or even acne, and it won’t slim your face, which is a major misconception.
There are also many “fakes” out there that aren’t made with real, natural stones. Sometimes, stone-like materials are dyed and treated with chemicals to give them the same smooth appearance, but they aren’t stones at all.
In these cases, using a roller on your face can actually be harmful and lead to irritation.
If the stone feels or sounds like plastic when you tap it on a hard surface, it’s probably not real stone. If you can easily scratch at it or it has air bubbles, you’re likely looking at a fake.
Also, keep cost in mind. Very cheap face rollers may not be the real deal.
That doesn’t mean you have to spend hundreds on one, but you should pay around $50, give or take.
Face Roller Benefits
Face rolling is simple. This is a less intrusive treatment than microneedling, which is sometimes done with a roller.
Face rolling can be done at home, and it’s an easy process. It can help penetrate skin care products and leave you with a natural glow, but the science behind its efficacy is pretty scarce, so many claims regarding its use are anecdotal.
The top benefits of face rolling include:
1. Reduces Puffiness
Using a face roller helps promote lymphatic drainage and reduce water retention in the skin that leads to puffiness. You can use a roller to improve bags under your eyes and puffiness in your cheeks.
2. Boosts Blood Circulation
Massaging the skin with natural stone boosts blood circulation, which gives your face a brighter, healthier look. A study published in Complementary Therapies in Medicine found that facial massage rollers helped improve blood flow when done for 10 minutes daily for five weeks.
3. Cools the Skin
Stones like jade and rose quartz have cooling properties and help smooth out the skin, while giving you an invigorated, refreshed look. The coolness can also help relieve tension in your jaw and around your temples.
4. May Reduce Signs of Aging
When you improve blood flow and reduce water retention, you’re left with softer, more supple skin. Using a face roller may give you a refreshed look and have anti-aging effects because it evens out your skin tone and reduces bags under the eyes.
Plus, if you’re using an anti-aging product, facial massage has been shown to amplify its benefits by improving absorption.
5. Boosts Mood
Just like massaging your shoulders can have calming, mood-boosting effects, so can gently massaging your face. It relieves tension and can be quite therapeutic, helping reduce stress and giving you a sense of self-care.
6. Relieves Tension
The calming, cooling sensation of face rolling can help improve headache pain, relieve TMJ symptoms and reduce sinus congestion. The gentle face massage promotes lymphatic drainage, boosts blood circulation and relaxes the mind.
How to Use a Face Roller
A facial massage with a roller can be anywhere between five and 10 minutes for the biggest impact. If you only have a minute though, that’s OK too — it will still have a nice cooling, anti-puffy effect.
You can use your face roller every day as part of your skin care routine, but even doing it a few times a week has its benefits over time.
Here’s how to use a face roller:
- Start by applying a natural cream or oil to your skin. The face roller helps get the product ingredients deep into your skin for the best results.
- Start rolling upward, sticking to one direction. Do not go up and down.
- Divide your face into four sections, and roll about five times, upward, in each section until you’ve covered the entire area.
- First massage your neck and jawline, starting at one side and moving on to the other.
- Next move up to your cheekbones.
- Now roll under your eyes and to your eye brows.
- End by rolling your forehead.
After face rolling, be sure to clean your roller with a gentle soap and hot water. Then lay it on a clean towel to dry.
You can find face rollers online and at many wellness and beauty stores. It’s best to buy one from a reputable company that guarantees the stones are the real deal, and you likely want to avoid the cheaper options, as they’re more likely to be fake.
Companies that specialize in ancient healing, Chinese medicine, Ayurveda and other whole-body wellness practices are great places to look.
Risks and Side Effects
Face rolling is safe and beneficial when done properly. Choosing a high-quality, legitimate face roller is very important.
Using a plastic roller that’s made with synthetic dyes and polymers can cause skin irritation and breakouts. Find a reputable company, and purchase a natural stone roller from it.
You also want to be mindful about the type of cream or oil you use on your skin before rolling.
- A face roller is made with a precious stone on a handle that can be used to massage the face gently.
- Face rolling helps boost blood circulation, improve complexion, reduce puffiness and give you a natural glow.
- In addition to its skin benefits, face rolling can also improve your mood and ease tension.
- To massage the face, simply roll upward gently, covering each section of the face. This process should take five to 10 minutes and should be done three to five times per week.
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