Is anyone else intimidated by the ‘beauty tools’ section of the beauty isle? These days it seems like there are so many pliers, rollers, and sponges to choose from. Fortunately for you, we’ve picked out some of our favorite (and we think best) body and skin care tools on the market.
There are two big players in the land of facial rollers: jade and rose quartz. Both are great, but have different benefits and are best for different kinds of people.
The use of jade in skincare (and general health and wellness) is a practice that dates back to ancient China. Similarly, rose quartz was used in both ancient Roman and Egyptian cultures. Both kinds of rollers are cool stones that tighten skin and pores, improve circulation, and reduce puffiness and wrinkles. All in a simple, daily face-rolling routine!
Rose quartz face rollers has slightly better benefits, and therefore usually carries a slight price tag. Rose quartz is a harder stone than jade, so therefore has less wear and tear. Rose quartz also stays cool for longer, whereas jade can adapt to the temperature of your skin. Both stones contain minerals (including magnesium and iron) that can be absorbed in small amounts by the skin.
Whether you choose rose quartz or jade, the correct way to use a face roller is by starting your facial massage at the centerline of your face and rolling outwards, going from top to bottom. When you roll outwards, go towards your ears, as this is where your lymphatic system drains.
A gua-sha is a face tool originating from East Asia and used in traditional chinese medicine (the word comes from the Chinese meaning ‘scraping’). The goal of the gua-sha tool is to unblock qi in the body by scraping it with a cool stone, often jade. That means that a gua-sha has a similar effect as a jade roller, but the tool is stronger and allows for more pressure to be placed on the skin.
On top of unblocking qi, a gua-sha can also unblock the lymphatic system and improve blood flow. During a massage, a gua-sha is commonly used in a process known as instrument-assisted soft tissue manipulation, meaning the person performing the massage can dig deeper into the tissue and muscle, facilitating myofascial release.
On your facial muscles, a gua-sha is great for relieving inflammation and clearing congestion. The natural coolness of jade also provides additional cooling benefits. Because of the blood flow improvement, it might also help get rid of dark circles.
We recommend: Primarily Pure Gua-Sha Stone
Dry brushing has been around for centuries, and even has roots in Ayurvedic medicine. Essentially, it’s exfoliation for your whole body. As you can probably tell from the name, a dry brush is used outside of the shower.
The benefits of dry brushing are similar to the benefits of exfoliating your face. A dry brush has coarse bristles (typically boar’s hair, if vegan products are a concern for you. Our recommended product below is made with synthetic bristles) that buff away dead skin cells, leaving behind soft, smooth skin.
Dry brushing also stimulates the lymphatic system and can help drain toxins from the body, much the same as face rollers do. One benefit that has gotten dry brushing a lot of attention in recent years is its effect on the appearance of cellulite. While this effect is temporary, repeating the dry brushing process every two to four days greatly reduces cellulite visibility by improving blood circulation.
We recommend: EcoTools Dry Body Brush
Rollers and Massage Balls
Another tool that greatly benefits the lymphatic system are massage rollers and balls. These tools are for everyone—not just if you’re an athlete. Especially with today’s work culture, all of us could serve to have better posture that leaves our muscles in need of some TLC.
Small massage balls and larger foam rollers release muscle stress and tension by applying gentle pressure and stretching out your muscles. It decreases muscle soreness and increases range of motion with regular use by reducing the amount of inflammation in the body.
The benefits of rolling your muscle become especially interesting if you have back pain; while the rolling process may be painful in the short term, it definitely has incredible long term benefits. Smaller massage balls can be rolled around on your hands and feet. If you spend a lot of time on the computer for work, these are perfect desk (at home or in the office) accessories.
Dermaplaning at home
This sounds like a fancy dermatological term, but in reality, dermaplaning is pretty simple. It essentially means shaving off the fine layer of vellus hair (aka peach fuzz) on your face, along with a host of dead skin cells. Along with chemical (lactic acid, glycolic acid) and physical (scrubs and cloths) exfoliators, it’s considered a kind of exfoliation.
The benefits of dermaplaning include more than just the removal of fine hairs and dead skin cells. It helps your makeup go on smoother, helps to even out your skin tone, and reduce fine lines and wrinkles. Especially for those of us with naturally dark body hair, it can even make your complexion brighter.
Dermaplaning used to be performed by dermatologists only, but new dermaplaning tools make it possible to do at home yourself. And don’t worry—it seems intimidating, but it’s simple, easy, and safe. Experts say to hold your skin tight behind the tool, and move it downwards in light strokes at a 45-degree angle. You’ll be surprised how many dead skin cells come right off!
Make sure to keep your blades fresh. Each time you use the tool, you’re said to be removing around three to four weeks of dead skin cells. It’s also best to dermaplane in the evening, so you’re giving your skin ample time to recover, as the treatment can be a bit harsh. However, the effects are also immediately noticeable! You won’t be able to stop touching your face, marveling at how smooth it feels.
We recommend: Stacked Skincare Dermaplaning Exfoliation Tool