There is nothing that is more therapeutic than a good massage. Whether your favorite technique is Swedish, deep tissue, hot stone or aromatherapy enhanced, in the comfort of your own home or outside in nature, massages do more for you than you probably know.
Massages enhance and help to maintain your health and your youthfulness. This is due to a number of responses triggered when you experience bodywork that benefits your skin and its underlying system.
Recently there has been a trend among beauty and lifestyle experts focusing their attention on how massage can make you look younger, even instantly, for a short period of time. It stands to reason that with regular massages these benefits will be more consistent, enhancing your skin’s beauty over the longer term and even slowing down aging.
Massages stimulate blood flow, which causes the radiant glow of your skin after a massage and can make skin more firm.
Facial Massages for Beauty
Facial massages in particular can have added beauty benefits that include reducing stress and the lines that develop and etch your face when you are stressed. Massage reduces cortisol levels, which reduces stress . This alone makes your face relax its features, and during massage of the face, those areas are targeted for direct release. Massage also brings more oxygen to the face via the increased blood flow which reduces cellular debris . In fact, there are a number of facial massage techniques that are likened by some dermatologists to a non-invasive facelift. In an interview in the beauty, fashion and lifestyle resource W24.com Dr. Nomphelo Gantsho, makes clear that, “Medically there are no studies and written papers to support the claim that facial massages can give a skin glow and reduce wrinkles on the face. However, practice has shown that face massage is a healthy and less expensive alternative to invasive treatments like Botox, laser resurfacing, fat injections and plastic surgery.”
Facial massage techniques that have gained media attention for their health, wellness, and beauty impacts can be done at home in as little as 3 minutes a day. There are also spas that now specialize in facial massage, and many spas that are offering facials complete with massages.
Scar-Busting Massages for Beautiful Skin
It isn’t only your face that benefits from the youth preserving benefits of massage. When you experience a full body massage you are helping the skin on your entire body look great. It can also help to soften scar tissue. There are six ways that this can work, according to the Institute for Integrative Health Care (an agency providing home study continuing education courses for massage therapy professionals):
- Manual Lymph Drainage optimizes lymphatic circulation and drainage around the injured area. Gentle, circular, draining motions within the scar itself or a firm stretch to the skin above and below the scar, first in a straight line and then in a circular motion, are two drainage techniques. Placing the fingers above the scar, then making gentle circular pumping motions on the scar also helps drain congested lymph fluid. As the massage therapist gently works down the scar, the tissue will feel softer. Drainage techniques should not hurt or make the scar redden.
- Myofascial Release helps ease constriction of the affected tissue. To stretch the skin next to the scar, place two or three fingers at the beginning of the scar and stretch the skin above the scar in a parallel direction. Then move the fingers a quarter of an inch further along the scar and repeat the stretch of the adjacent tissue, working your way along the scar. An alternative method is to follow the same pattern of finger movements using a circular motion instead of straight stretches. Work your way along the scar in a clockwise and counterclockwise fashion.
- Deep Transverse Friction can prevent adhesion formation and rupture unwanted adhesions. Applied directly to the lesion and transverse to the direction of the fibers, this deep tissue massage technique can yield desirable results in a mature or immature scar. Never progress beyond a comfortable level.
- Lubrication of the scar helps soften and increase its pliability. Mediums such as lotion, castor oil, vitamin E oil or other oil can prevent the scar from drying out and re-opening.
- Stretching aids in increasing range of motion. This is most important when approaching scars that cross over a joint. Scar tissue will lengthen after being stretched, especially if the stretch is sustained for several seconds and is combined with massage.
- Heat Application helps the pliability and flexibility of the scar. Common tools used to apply heat are paraffin wax, moist heat packs or ultrasound.
Massaging Cellulite Away
Some spas also claim to have perfected massage as a therapy to obtain smooth, toned skin by eliminating cellulite. Cellulite is made up of fat deposits under the skin that bulge outward giving the skin a dimpled and uneven appearance. The result is skin on your thighs, buttocks, or other areas having a texture that resembles cottage cheese. Cellulite massage techniques rely on squeezing and pinching the fat deposits and then rolling the fat away from the connective tissue by rubbing the muscles.
That regular massage can help you maintain your youthfulness is great news. What is even better is the compounding impact that your MDSUN anti-aging products can have when you add massage therapy as a regular part of your beauty routine.