The wellness world has long touted massage as a way to relax the nerves, improve circulation, and tone the body. But if that’s all true, then shouldn’t the face be benefitting too, instead of getting banished to a little hole at the top of the massage table? We happen to think so—and many ancient cultures throughout history have agreed that facial massage is an integral addition to a healthy skincare and wellness regimen. We may be getting on board just a few centuries late—but better late than never. Facial massage is not only a wonderful way to unwind; it might also be the key to your best skin ever.
Facial Massage Benefits
The benefits of facial massage are plentiful, with research demonstrating headache and congestion relief, mood-boosting, and more. But for our purposes, we’ll stick to some of our favorites when it comes to beauty and skin health.
A little extra blood flow and oxygen in the face is never a bad thing. It can help to deliver more nutrients to the cells, detoxify, heal inflammation (read: blemishes, irritation, and more), and leave you with a nice, healthy flush. Studies have shown that just a five-minute face massage can pump up circulation in the skin for up to ten minutes after you’ve finished.
Contouring has become a mainstay in the cosmetics world. But why cake on the Kardashian look when you can sculpt your face naturally, with so many other side benefits? Proponents of facial massage claim serious contouring power, thanks to its ability to release excess fluid buildup and reduce swelling. Goodbye, puffy cheeks and under-eye bags!
Some scientific research has shown a link between facial massage and increased levels of collagen and elastin, two proteins that form the building blocks of our skin. Our supplies of these proteins start to diminish as early as our twenties, leaving fine lines, folds, and wrinkles in their wake—so it becomes more and more important overtime to give them a little prod whenever we can.
Facial massage, like any massage, helps to calm the mind and the body. There are a number of pressure points on our faces, and stimulating those can have a real impact on the way we feel. When we’re stressed, the body releases hormones such as cortisol, which may contribute to premature aging. Stiffness and tension can add years to our faces, so regularly giving those facial muscles some love is not only conducive to our mental health, but also a great anti-aging tactic.
How to Massage Your Face at Home: 4 Facial Massage Techniques
Ready to take the plunge? Here are just a few techniques to jumpstart your facial massage journey.
The Natural Face Lift
- Squeeze a couple of drops of your favorite face oil or face serum into clean hands, and gently pat it into the entire face.
- Make a fist with each of your hands, and knead your knuckles into the skin, starting with the chin and jawline, then working your way up through the cheeks, temples, and forehead. Repeat a few times. This should feel really good!
- Next, hold your hands flat against one side of your face, with your fingertips pointing towards each other. Pressing firmly into the skin with your fingertips, begin to sweep them over the face in an alternating fashion, starting at the jawline and moving upward. Now, repeat on the other side.
For best results: Do this at night before you go to bed for a relaxing routine that helps you unwind, while also stimulating the skin’s regenerative process and improving product absorption.
Cold Therapy Massage
This one incorporates the use of SiO’s Cryodrop tool. In addition to the slew of beauty benefits from facial massage, the Cryodrop’s cold surface incorporates cryo facial benefits to reduce the appearance of pores, redness, and fine lines.
- You’ll want to start with an even layer of energy serum, in this case, to allow the tool to glide easily over the skin.
- Lightly apply pressure to the areas of the face for 15 seconds and move the device toward the ears and temples.
- Using the skinny side of the tool, precisely apply light pressure to the areas around the eyes and lips.
For best results: Without freezing it, refrigerate the tool for 5 minutes before use for a deep cooling treatment. Don’t forget to wash your Cryodrop tool with warm water in between sessions and store it in its pouch for a cooling refresh the next day!
Refresh and Contour
- Moisten your face with a moisturizer or serum of your choice—or utilize a skin-friendly natural oil like avocado or jojoba.
- Next, curl your index fingers into a hook shape, with the rest of your hand in a fist. Placing the tips of the index fingers at the inner corners of the eyes, begin to sweep down, hooking right under the cheekbones and outwards to the hinges of the jaw bone, then across the jawline to the chin.
- Repeat three or four times.
For best results: Do this every morning to relieve puffiness and awaken the senses. It also can help to alleviate swelling and dullness after a long flight.
The Under-Eye Perk-Up
- Using clean fingertips, gently pat an eye cream or gel of your choice into the under-eye area.
- Without tugging or dragging, use two fingers to tap in a circle around your eyes, starting at the inner corners of the eyes, moving up towards the bridge of the nose, to the eyebrows and outward, then down past the outer corners of the eyes, through the tops of the cheekbones and back to the inner corners of the eyes. Repeat the circle about three times.
- Then, using your middle fingers, find the pressure point located right around the inner corners of the eyebrows, just under the brow bone. Press upward into the bone and hold for a few seconds. Next, move down to the bridge of the nose near the tear ducts, pressing inward towards the sides of the nose.
- To finish off with one last feel-good move, massage the temples in a circular motion using your middle and index fingers.
For best results: Perfect for any time of day, this one works especially well as a morning wake-up call (again, we love using a chilled eye cream to help combat under-eye bags!).
A face massage is a low-cost, high impact DIY add-on to your daily regimen. It’s got such impressive immediate effects as increasing blood flow, reducing puffiness, and brightening tired or dull skin—but as with most things, the long-term perks kick in overtime, enhancing muscle tone in the face, softening fine lines and wrinkles, and balancing the skin tone. We know, we know; with such busy lives, there’s barely time to throw on some toner or eye cream. But considering the mental health advantages (and, honestly, the fact that it just feels so good), facial massage is one you’ll look forward to incorporating into your skincare routine every day.