New to Gua Sha? Here are Our Tips & Techniques for Beginners

In recent years, Gua Sha has gained popularity in mainstream beauty and wellness practices.

Whether you are new to Gua Sha or looking to enhance your practice, let this article be your go-to resource for understanding and mastering this traditional healing art. Learn about how Gua Sha can enhance your physical and emotional wellbeing, and how to use Gua Sha to improve your skincare routine.

Together, we will uncover the secrets behind the recent popularity of Gua Sha, explore its rich history in Traditional Chinese Medicine and learn about some tips and techniques on how incorporate Gua Sha into your natural holistic skincare routine.

The Origins and History of Gua Sha

Gua Sha ("刮痧") is a traditional Chinese healing technique that has roots dating back thousands of years, with its origins in ancient Chinese medicine. It involves scraping the skin with a tool to promote blood flow and circulation, release tension and stimulate the body's natural healing processes. When used correctly, Gua Sha can be used to address health concerns such as pain, inflammation and tension by releasing the stagnant Qi energy and toxins from our body.

Traditionally, practitioners used Gua Sha tools crafted from jade, bone or horn to scrape the skin's surface. The goal was to remove "sha" (stagnant energy or blood) and restore the body's balance. This scraping motion can sometimes leave temporary red marks on the skin, indicating the release of tension and blockages.

Beyond its physical benefits, Gua Sha is also believed to have a profound impact on emotional well-being. By releasing stagnant energy and promoting the flow of Qi, Gua Sha can help alleviate stress, anxiety and emotional tension.

How to Choose the Right Gua Sha Tool

Today, you can find Gua Sha tools made from different materials such as Jade, Rose Quartz, Bian Stone or even stainless steel.

When selecting a tool, consider factors such as the material, weight and smoothness. The right tool should feel comfortable in your hand and glide smoothly across your skin without causing irritation.

At Nila Singapore, we stock Jade and Rose Quartz Gua Sha tools. Each stone has its own unique energetic and therapeutic properties. Jade is the stone of purity and serenity, renowned for its balancing properties. It promotes a sense of calmness and equilibrium, bringing about rejuvenation and a refreshed complexion. In contrast, Rose Quartz is the stone of love and harmony. It opens your heart, imparting inviting compassion and self-love to flourish. Its soothing energy nurtures your skin, reduces emotional stress and promotes a radiant and loving aura.

Gua Sha Techniques for Beginners

The fundamental basics of Gua Sha is simple: Gently scrape the tool over your skin in specific patterns to increase blood circulation, reduce inflammation and encourage your lymphatic system's detoxification process.

Let us now go into detail and learn about specific Gua Sha techniques to promote a radiant and healthy complexion. Do this regularly and you may find that your face also looks slimmer, younger and more symmetrical.

To begin, hold the Gua Sha at a 15-degree angle against your skin. Apply a facial oil or hydrating serum to your skin to enhance the glide. Apply moderate pressure and scrape in one direction with long sweeping motions according to the steps below. Always sweep the Gua Sha towards your lymphatic drainage pathways to flush out toxins and promote lymphatic drainage. Repeat each stroke 7 to 10 times, adjusting the pressure based on your comfort.

  1. With slow and gentle upward motions, glide the outward-curved edge upwards on your forehead to smooth out any wrinkles or frown lines.
  2. Using the inner edge of the Gua Sha, gently follow the edge of your eyebrows to lift your eyebrows and any sagging skin. Be careful and gentle as the skin around your eye is the most delicate.
  3. With the same edge, gently glide below your eyes, following an upward curve as you sweep up towards your temple. This helps to soften fine lines as well as reduce dark circles and under-eye puffiness. Do this on both sides of your face.
  4. Now using the inner curved edge of the Gua Sha, massage your cheeks in an outward direction from the edge of your nose to your ear, following the contour of your cheekbones. This lifts and firms your jowl area, softening any smile lines. Do this on both sides of your face.
  5. Using the same inner curved edge of the Gua Sha, start from your chin and follow your jawline upwards to your ear in long, sweeping movements. This firm face contour sculpts your face and lifts your skin.
  6. Finally, use the outer edge of the Gua Sha to gently sweep the Gua Sha upwards on your neck to lift your skin.

Facial Skincare Tips

Always use with a facial cream or oil

Never use Gua Sha on its own without a skincare product, as it can tug your skin and potentially cause wrinkles. Apply a high quality facial serum, cream or oil to ensure a smooth tool glide. Using the Gua Sha at this step will help your skin better absorb the skincare product for maximum benefits. We recommend using our Glow Serum or Natural Facial Oil, which is crafted with Helichrysum and Rose essential oils, two of the best essential oils for skincare renowned for their anti-ageing and skin regenerative properties. Together, they nourish your skin by stimulating collagen production as well as protecting the skin structure and elastin network. Of course, you can always make your own DIY skincare blend with your favourite essential oils, always making sure that they are appropriately diluted.

Leave your Gua Sha in the shower

Consistency is key! Incorporate Gua Sha into your routine regularly to reap its benefits. If you find that you are always forgetting to add this extra step to your skincare routine, try leaving your Gua Sha in your shower as this will help you remember to use it. The best way to do this is by incorporating a double cleansing method. First, use an oil-based cleaner to remove any sebum, makeup and SPF from your face. Next, step into your shower and use your Gua Sha tool. Finally, use a deep water-based facial cleanser to thoroughly cleanse your pores, removing any bacteria, sweat and old skin cells. This is a fuss free and easy way to remember to use your Gua Sha everyday.

Pre-chill your Gua Sha in your fridge

Store your Gua Sha tool in the fridge before use for a refreshing sensation, especially beneficial for morning routines. The cool sensation from the chilled Gua Sha invigorates your skin and awakens your skin, helping to reduce morning puffiness and inflammation by constricting blood vessels. As you glide the cool Gua Sha over your skin, it aids in lymphatic drainage, further helping with any water retention and leaving your skin feeling refreshed. This can contribute to a brighter and more energised complexion, setting a positive tone for the rest of your day!

Incorporate Breathwork

Practice deep breathing during your Gua Sha routine to enhance relaxation and promote a sense of inner calm and balance. As you engage in deep breathing exercises, incorporate the therapeutic benefits of aromatherapy by diffusing essential oils to create a serene ambiance that relaxes your mind and body. We recommend diffusing our Charge Up blend in the mornings to stimulate your mind and increase mental energy for the day ahead, and our Wind Down blend in the evenings to release any emotional tension, anxiety and stress from a busy and hectic day. This mindful integration of Gua Sha, breathwork and aromatherapy can contribute to a more profound sense of tranquility and provide a holistic approach to wellbeing, making your self-care routine even more enjoyable.

Crystal Cleansing

If you are using a Jade or Rose Quartz Gua Sha, consider taking a moment to cleanse your Gua Sha. By maintaining its positive energy and connection with nature, this can enhance the spiritual connection and holistic benefits that it brings to your skincare routine. Placing the Gua Sha under a full moon is believed to help it absorb lunar energy, which can cleanse and recharge crystals. Alternatively, smudging with sage or misting with Palo Santo are traditional purifying practices believed to banish negative energy. As you do this, visualise the release of any accumulated energies, leaving your Gua Sha energetically aligned for your next self-care session.

Using Gua Sha on your Body

Gua Sha isn't just for your face – it can also work wonders on easing stiff muscles and body tension. When you use your Gua Sha on your body, the gentle scraping motion on your skin helps to stimulate blood flow and lympathic drainage, promoting the release of built-up toxins, reducing inflammation and easing any muscle strain. We recommend doing this with our range of massage oils, handcrafted blends of nourishing plant oils and premium essential oils to revitalise and energise your body and mind.

Neck and Shoulders

Many of us carry stress, tension and aching muscles in our neck and shoulders, especially due to long hours spent hunched over a computer screen or mobile phone. Use the curved edges of the Gua Sha to gently glide over your neck and shoulders, targeting tight muscles and promoting relaxation. Regular use can contribute to reduced muscle stiffness and discomfort, as well as an overall sense of relief and flexibility. By improving your blood circulation, this can also address issues such as headaches and migraines which can be worsened by overstraining our eyes in front of the computer.


Using Gua Sha on your chest can be an invigorating addition to your self care routine, especially helping in detoxification and lymphatic drainage. Use the flat edge of the Gua Sha to gently scrape in an upward motion, following the natural contours of your chest towards your lymph nodes under the arms. This technique promotes circulation, encourages the movement of lymphatic fluids and aids in the elimination of toxins from your body. Be mindful of the pressure, ensuring it is comfortable and not too intense.


Integrating Gua Sha into your wellness routine for your back can be transformative, especially for relieving muscle soreness and stiffness caused by bad posture. Ask your partner to help gently glide the flat edge of the Gua Sha along your back muscles, focusing on any areas of tension and discomfort. This stimulates blood circulation and encourages your muscles to relax while enhancing the flow of Qi (energy) and releasing any stagnation.

Arms and Legs

Enhance your body's overall circulation and support your natural healing process by using Gua Sha on your arms and legs. Use the smooth edge of the Gua Sha to gently glide along your limbs, moving towards the heart to help your circulatory system return blood to your heart and lungs to be re-oxygenated. Regular use of Gua Sha on your limbs can help reduce muscle aches and soreness, improve flexibility and contribute to a revitalised sense of wellbeing.


The ancient practice of Gua Sha is a beautiful form of self-care that not only nurtures our skin, but also supports our overall physical and emotional wellbeing. By understanding its history, we can begin to master the techniques and incorporate it into our self-care routines, unlocking the full potential of this ancient healing art.

As you embark on your Gua Sha journey, remember that consistency and mindfulness are key. Take your time to understand your body's responses, adjusting the pressure and techniques that is best for your face and body. There are may ways to incorporate aromatherapy with Gua Sha, be it in the blends and oils that you use on your skin or diffusing your favourite essential oils as you savour these moments of connection with yourself. With regular practice, you will discover the transformative power of this time-tested practice for supporting your body's natural healing processes and bringing harmony to your mind and body.

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