“Some physicians suggest that stress may be responsible for 75% of all diseases in the Western world, including skin diseases (e.g., psoriasis and eczema), headaches and migraine, digestive disorders, high blood pressure and heart-related diseases, as well as backache and muscle pain, poor eyesight and depression … solution is to find ways to manage the stresses … one way is the use of massage therapy.”
—Stretch Dowse, MD, Eminent Victorian Physician, 1887
Today, it is known that effective massage goes way beyond relaxing clients. An ancient technique, massage has been around for more than 3,000 years, and was prevalent in ancient cultures, such as Chinese, Egyptian, Grecian, Roman and Indian as a therapeutic form of medicine. At the height of massage during the 19th century,
Pehr Henrik Ling, known as one of the fathers of modern massage, developed a Swedish movement system, which is now known as the Swedish massage. As the benefits of massage became undeniable, the art developed and advanced throughout time.
When performed correctly, massage can provide clients with a wealth of benefits for their health and skin. Specifically, facial massage:
- Stimulates circulation;
- Stimulates sebaceous production;
- Relaxes the nerves;
- Releases toxins trapped between the tissues and muscles;
- Oxygenates skin tissues;
- Provides physiological and psychological benefits;
- Aids in the extraction process;
- Hydrates by bringing nutrients to the surface layer of the skin;
- Increases lymphatic flow; and
- Eases muscle tension.
Although there are mechanical massage alternatives available today, it takes a deep understanding of the underworkings of the skin to optimize benefits and avoid the risk of exaggerating facial lines. A working knowledge of the bones, muscles and lymphatic system of the face will give you a competitive edge over mechanical alternatives. (See How-to: Facial Massage.) Your knowledge of calculated facial massage techniques will allow you to combine the benefits of high touch and high tech during any facial treatment.
Practice perfect techniques
Facial massage has a plethora of benefits for your client’s appearance and health. When done correctly, facial massage helps to provide your clients with glowing, healthy-looking complexions. Educating yourself and practicing perfect techniques will allow you to provide your clients with superior results within any facial treatment, which will bring them back to experience even more of your menu.
Lydia Sarfati, president and founder of Repêchage, is an internationally recognized skin care expert. Sarfati has more than 30 years of experience as an esthetician, spa owner, manufacturer and consultant.