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What exactly do face rollers do?

Get the cold hard facts about what these ancient little devices actually do.
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Spend five minutes on Tik Tok and chances are you’ll see an influencer or two showing off their favourite new face roller.

Aside from making your beauty stand look on point, there are some bold claims out there about what exactly these little devices do.

At Kogu, we’re big fans of face rollers. We even created our own made from obsidian stone.

But with so many beauty tools available today, are they worth it, and do they do anything?

In this article, we distill fact from fiction giving you the cold, hard facts about what face rollers do do, so you can decide whether or not you need one for your beauty arsenal.

So, what is a face roller?

A face roller is a massaging tool for your face usually made from Jade, but you can get them in rose quartz, obsidian, and many other gemstones.

You would typically use one during a facial massage to increase blood circulation in the face and help drain toxins from your skin tissue through your lymphatic drainage system.

Jade face rollers have been around for centuries, dating back to seventh-century China. And it is believed in traditional Chinese medicine that jade stone draws out negative Qi (pronounced “chi”), the life force that runs through all living things.

You can get face rollers in a couple of different styles, either with a single rolling head or double. The double usually has both a small and large rolling head at either side of the handle.

But, what do they do?

To understand exactly what is happening when you perform a facial massage with a face roller, it’s important to break it down into its two component parts.

  1. The massage
  2. The gemstones

Massaging the skin with a particular technique is proven to have many health benefits, such as the promotion of brighter and firmer skin, collagen production, and detoxification of the skin tissue.

The second part, however, is where it gets a bit dicey. At least, from a modern, scientific point of view.

Let’s dig a little deeper.

The science of massaging the face

OK. So bear with us here. You need a quick crash course in biology and the circulatory system first.

It’s widely accepted that the heart only pumps about 50% of our blood through our bodies, relying on muscle movement and external pressures to make up for the other half.

When your muscles contract and relax it creates a pump-action against your veins which moves blood back towards the heart.

Massaging your face, whether it is with your hands or a face roller, mechanically creates this pump in your face, forcing more blood to flow through this area.

In this 2018 study, scientists at the Tokyo Institute of Technology actually studied the effects of facial massages with face rollers, concluding that it improves blood flow to the face by 25%.

Joseph Muscolino said, “We prove something that should effectively already be understood to be true based on our understanding of the fundamental mechanics of the underlying anatomy and physiology.”

Improving blood circulation in the face

With good blood circulation you move more oxygen and nutrients to your skin, which helps with cell regrowth, a vital component for collagen production.

Collagen is a key ingredient to strong and elastic skin.

The increase in blood will also make your skin appear brighter.

But you need to use the proper technique to get the best results from your face roller, you shouldn’t just massage your face in any old direction.

The lymphatic drainage massage

Lymphatic drainage is a natural occurrence in the body that moves waste products and toxins away from tissues and back into the bloodstream.

Lymph nodes act as filters that attack and kill bacteria, viruses, damaged cells, or cancerous cells.

By massaging your face along the lymphatic network in your face you are effectively removing toxins out of your skin tissue and into the lymph nodes where they can be broken down.

This can only be a good thing.

It’s worth noting, however, that lymphatic drainage does happen naturally. Just moving your jaw is enough to stimulate the flow of lymphatic fluid.

So is a face roller actually doing something your body already takes care of naturally?

Well, there hasn’t been a ton of research into the effects of lymphatic massages on the face, but there has been plenty of studies on the rest of the body.

For example, a 2007 study found that massaging the lymphatic system along the neck significantly reduced swelling after tooth extraction.

So, if you are going to use a face roller, it makes sense to roll your tool towards your lymph nodes.

You can read this article to learn how to use a face roller.

The power of gemstones

For centuries, people have used gemstones to heal everything from diseases to bad luck and everything in between.

Here at Kogu, we genuinely believe in the healing powers of precious stones.

But according to modern medicine, it’s a pseudo-science.

In a 2001 study, London psychologist Christopher French gave 80 volunteers a bunch of crystals and told them about the various benefits they may experience from holding the stones over a period of time.

Half of the participants had fake stones and the rest had real gemstones. Both groups reported feeling similar sensations.

Christopher French said: “We found that lots of people claimed that they could feel odd sensations while holding the crystals if we’d told them in advance that this is what might happen. In other words, the effects reported were a result of the power of suggestion, not the power of the crystals.”

So science puts it down to the placebo effect.

But according to Professor Ted Kaptchuk of Harvard Medical School, the placebo effect is a very real therapeutic phenomenon.

He said: “Placebos have been shown to be most effective for conditions like pain management, stress-related insomnia, and cancer treatment side effects like fatigue and nausea.”

“It’s about creating a stronger connection between the brain and body and how they work together”

In other words, if you believe using a Jade Roller is going to help cure your anxiety, then it will probably will. At least in the short term.

What is interesting about jade, is its ability to stay cool, even against the warmth of your face.

This makes for a very soothing experience as you are performing your rolling ritual, which can help reduce headaches, reduce puffiness and inflammation.

Let’s wrap it up

Whether or not massaging your face with a precious stone roller will bring you good luck or happiness is a debate for another day.

But what we can say with absolute certainty is that it will kick start the natural healing process in your face.

Whether you do this with your hands or a gemstone roller is up to you. But you can’t beat the feeling of a cool precious stone gently massaging your face at the end of a long, hard day.

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