Ah, facial massage. Daunting, and probably a little confusing, but when done right, tremendously helpful. As someone who suffers from facial bloating if I've indulged too much, or let's be real, have been eating way too much salt, this skin-care technique can be tremendously helpful.
But most people, myself included, don't know what to do beyond aimlessly massaging their visage. Turns out, there's a technique — a good one.
I realized this while getting one of the most spectacular facials ever: The Elemis Biotec Facial at Georgia Louise Spa in NYC. I had to know more, so I reached out to Georgia Louise, Elemis' Consulting Facialist, to find out just what techniques I should be using and why facial massage should be a more integral part of my routine.
Most of us don't practice facial massage, but we have most likely received it in a facial. Those more practiced hands that are giving you the facial can help drain away tension and fluid in your face (hello, teethgrinders), as well as lift and sculpt your muscles — and the result is more radiant skin.
Georgia Louise explains, "If we sat and thought about how many of the muscles we use in our face in just a few hours, you’d be shocked. People regularly treat their bodies to a massage because of pain or stiffness, but not everyone views their face the same way."
So what can one expect from a massage that specifically targets the face? Louise says that benefits include an immediate increase in blood and oxygen flow, which in the long term increases collagen production, and therefore a youthful glow. If one were to get a facial at the Georgia Louise Spa, the massage would, according to Louise, awaken the skin so that it can respond better to the products being used.
And why does the skin need to be woken up? Well, it may be our largest organ, but according to Louise, it can also be our laziest. That increase of blood and oxygen flow due to a facial massage literally makes your skin more awake, so it is more susceptible to the full effects of your treatment. How cool is that?
That's in the immediate future. But what about long-term results from practicing or receiving a facial massage? Louise tells us, "Facial massage speeds up our circulation, allowing for skin to heal and repair itself from the damage and traumas we put it through on a daily basis a lot quicker."
Futhermore, if you suffer from puffiness, like I do, the light flowing touch of a drainage massage will flush out congestion. And these light, gentle strokes? They also work magic for someone who is suffering from congestion due to allergies, which I'm pretty sure is all of us RN.
What are some techniques that you can use at home, if you can't make the trip to get a facial at the Georgia Louise Spa? I'm glad you asked. Here are some techniques that Georgia suggests:
1. You always want to use lifting movements especially along the neck and jaw line area.
2. Soft effleurage movements inwards and outwards will ensure smoothing of any wrinkles and fine lines.
3. Working across the face, slowly rolling the palm of the hands flat starting at the forehead, working down to the cheeks and rolling up the neck
Pressure point massage is ideal for anyone who suffers with tension headaches or sinus problems
1. Using your ring finger, apply firm pressure from the start of the brow working outwards, holding each pressure for 5-10 seconds.
2. Then, working outwards under the eyes, apply a medium pressure to the temples and a pressure to the back of the ears by the ear lobe.
3. Repeat this 3 to 4 times.
Lastly, according to Louise, you should practice facial massage at a minimum 3 times a week to boost your circulation and soften any tension that you are carrying in your face. Check out the video below for further facial massage techniques, and then go forth and get rid of tension and bloat!