CHARLOTTE – I might as well address some videos I’ve seen on social media lately that talk about getting rid of wrinkles with a massage. First, let’s address that as we age, we wrinkle. Wrinkles are caused by lack of elasticity. According to the Mayo Clinic, your skin naturally becomes less elastic and more fragile. We have a decrease in natural oils that dry your skin. We have fat in the deep layers of our skin that diminishes, causing loose saggy skin and more pronounced lines and crevices.
Sadly, as with other parts of massage, I cannot find any studies showing that massage does anything to improve the appearance of wrinkles. But what we do know is that massage does do well with improving blood flow in the face when massage is done. There are different kinds of modalities that might definitely do things to the skin to improve appearance. Gua Sha, for instance, is an ancient form of traditional Chinese medicine that has gained more popularity recently in association with facial massage using quartz.
Personally and professionally I think massage does nice things to the face and head when applied. Facial massage typically feels good and is used a tool to relax. Talk to your therapist about face massage and get his/her recommendations. We don’t apply anything to the face that an esthetician might (such as creams or masks) but we can apply some lotion or oil and work all around the face, ending with a nice relaxing or invigorating scalp massage.
-Lisa Lane is a licensed (#13098) massage and bodywork therapist and is owner of Massage Sanctuary in Mint Hill, NC.