If you've ever had a really good facial in a beauty salon - one that left your skin plumped up and really glowing - you'll probably have realised that the benefits of the treatment have less to do with the products used than with the techniques used to apply them. Facial massage methods can be used to apply moisturiser or facial oil (and even to massage in cleanser) and the good news is that you can easily use these techniques yourself at home if you don't have the cash to splash on regular facials.
Giving yourself a proper facial massage once or twice a week (and incorporating aspects of it into applying your cleanser or moisturiser) helps to promote blood circulation, plump up the skin, remove toxins and restore firmness and radiance. The techniques work best with a facial oil or oil-based product, as it allows your fingers to glide over the skin, so try balms and creams with a high oil content if you don't like to use pure oils.
Read on for some quick tips on giving yourself a facial massage.
- Begin by warming some oil (or balm or cream) in the palms of your hands and smoothing it over your face using light strokes. Then, starting in the centre of your forehead, use your fingertips and work out towards the temples in small circular strokes. Follow this by pressing gently on the inner corner of the eyes and gliding your fingertips around the eye socket and out to the temples again.
- Next slide your fingers down either side of your nose to the tip and back up again. Then use your index and middle fingers to gently massage around your mouth, starting at the chin and moving in small circular strokes, ending just under the nose.
- Massage from your chin to your earlobes, from the corners of your mouth to the middle of your ears and from either side of your nose to your temples, using small circular strokes all the time.
- Using your index finger and thumb, slide up the sides of your jaw towards your ear.
And that's it! Once you get the routine down (did you manage to read this without being tempted to try out the movements while looking at the screen?), it will only take a few minutes to use this technique and hopefully both improve your skin and allow you to relax at the end of the day.