There are many Youtube videos of people gushing over the benefits of a facial massage. Some of them demonstrate how to do it with a Chinese soup spoon; others prefer to work with their fingers. But does the facial massage really give any real benefits, especially when the process – pressing, smoothing, stroking the skin – requires time, energy and attention many of us don’t have at the end of the day?
Any massage stimulates the blood vessels and improves circulation, and your skin needs good circulation to perform well. The blood carries oxygen and nutrients to the skin, and carries away waste products like free radicals. That’s why regular exercise works wonders on your skin. While a 3 minute facial massage won’t give the full benefits of 20 minutes on a treadmill, it works on the same principle.
There’s also a good bulk of scientific studies on the connection between oxygen and skin’s overall health and strength. Oxygen helps in producing new skin cells, defend against bacteria, and synthesizing collagen. If a facial massage can encourage a flood of oxygen to your face, and keep the blood cells there working well, then that is good!
A facial massage can also help reduce puffiness around the eye, cheek and jawline. However, be careful about claims that it can actually neutralize or expel toxins – only the liver can do that! – and if you’re taking a very unhealthy diet of processed foods, smoking and drinking, a facial massage will not be able to magically sweep your blood (and your skin) clean.
That being said, facial massage does deliver some benefits, and if you find it personally relaxing and enjoy doing it either yourself or when you treat yourself at the spa, then by all means go ahead. However, if you would rather skip it, then you can find many other ways to get its benefits. You can improve circulation by dancing in your bedroom to your favourite song for 15 minutes, or control puffiness around the eyes with products that contain caffeine. There are also many facial masks and creams that can tone and tighten the skin. If you are concerned about removing toxins, the best solution is to avoid ingesting toxins through a proper diet.
As I have often said in this blog, the choice is up to you. There is more than one path to beautiful skin, and you can always pick what regimen and rituals work best not just with your skin concerns, but your personal preferences.
Mei Hui - Managing Director/Pharmacist