At KIM+ONO, we believe in the power of taking care of yourself every single day. Whether that means a big vacation and event with your best girlfriends or a cup of your favorite tea to close the day, we believe no act of self care can be too small. Our kimono robes and wellness tools are all designed to help you take those small acts of self care every single day. Both in store and online, we feature silky fabrics to give you a smooth, soft feel any time you wear a kimono robe. And we also feature wellness tools designed to give you healthier-feeling skin and an easy way to make self care a ritual you can keep up. So in light of our commitment to self care and the beautiful way it can uplift your energy, we wanted to give you all the instructions necessary to get the most out of your wellness tools. Last week was National Self Care Day and to celebrate, we teamed up with Jo Encarnacion of the wellness account @gofitjo to give a tutorial all about the benefits of Gua Sha tools and Facial Rollers.
In this tutorial, Jo is wearing one of our favorite maxi kimonos, the Peony & Butterfly Kimono Robe. It’s a great choice to pair with your morning routine, but you might decide to keep this maxi kimono robe on all day as it pairs beautifully with a t-shirt and jeans as well. The soft charmeuse blend is a sweet choice to feel beautiful, and a practical choice to care for — it’s machine washable in a delicate cycle. Simply hang it to dry and it’s ready to wear again. What makes your morning routine special isn’t what you do but how you do it. So if you decide to pick up a long kimono cover up as you roll out of bed and give yourself a gua sha facial, make sure you do it with love.
As Jo mentions in her tutorial, there are some major benefits she has seen by using these gua sha tools. She’s gotten “really healthy radiant-looking skin” and also noticed “signs of anti-aging”. While Jo doesn’t mind aging (and neither do we!), some people feel more encumbered by it, and so using gua sha tools is just one way to delay the look of aging. Gua sha tools help to increase blood circulation and to detox the skin by draining the lymphatic system. Because the skin is the largest organ on our bodies, it should be the organ we pay attention to the most! But sadly, that’s often not the case unless we have some specific issue we’re dealing with. Using gua sha tools (while wearing your soft, silky, stylish long kimono robe we might add!) is one quick way to give the biggest organ in your body a little extra love every single day.
Gua sha is a technique that comes from traditional Chinese medicine. It’s a technique that uses a tool to scrape the skin. Scrape sounds like a harsh word, but these tools, which comes in a variety of sizes and shapes, are anything but harsh. Jo suggests starting this “scraping” process by applying facial oil onto your hands and then patting onto your skin to evenly distribute the oil onto your face and neck. Jo says the oil “gives the tool easier mobility across your face”.
Divide your face in half starting at your chin. Start at the midline of your face and with the long side of the gua sha tool, scrape from the chin all the way up to the ear. Do between 3-5 different strokes per section of your face.
Next, use the curved side of the tool and work it into the next section, which is under your cheekbone at the meaty part of your cheek. Next, use the curved side of the gua sha tool and scrape from your nose to your hairline above the cheekbone. The last section on the bottom half of your face is right underneath the eye.
Once you get up to the underside of your eye, it’s time to do the top of your eye. Take the outside flat edge of the round corner and trace along your eyelid from the inside to the outside. You can also give your brows a little lift by taking the same part of the tool and working up into the browline.
Finally, when you reach the forehead, take the long side of the tool parallel with your eyebrows and work it up the forehead into the hairline. Next, flip it perpendicular to your hairline and scrape from the midline of your forehead to the outside of your face. The final step on this first half of your face is to work the tool from the top of your forehead down your hairline to below your ear and underneath your chin and down your neck. This helps to promote detoxification through lymphatic drainage.
Then, simply repeat on side two!
The beautiful thing about these gua sha tools is that they have all kinds of benefits to make you feel great about your skin. Jo says they can break up any kind of stiffness and using these tools is like “foam rolling for the face”. If there’s any redness, Jo says that’s okay, it is a sign of the blood rising up to the surface of the skin. It resolves itself soon after you’re done. This blood circulation helps to reduce the puffiness underneath the eye and gives it a nice smooth texture. You’ll notice once you do one side of your face that your eyes will look a little more lifted and their puffiness may be a little less prominent. One quick tip: you can stick your rollers and tools in the fridge and give you a nice clean effect when using.
Self care is about feeling good, and one easy way to do that is to put on your favorite kimono jacket for your outfit of the day or give your facial and neck skin some care with your gua sha tools as soon as you wake up. In fact, if you wake up with a stiff neck, Jo recommends using your tools there as well! She says, “Take the long side and give yourself a quick neck massage. It breaks up sore muscle tissue and fascia sitting underneath the skin.”
No time to get to the spa? No problem. Wearing your stylish long kimono robe and breaking out your gua sha and facial roller kit is a great way to rejuvenate the skin at home. Jo recommends doing your gua sha at night and your roller in the morning.
To use a facial roller, the same rules as using gua sha apply. Split your face in half and use the same upward curved motion from midline toward the hairline. Use the small side of the tool for underneath the eye. Try using your roller in the morning to help reduce puffiness for sleep, reducing swelling and water retention in your face as well.
We hope you were able to check out Jo’s full tutorial. But if you missed the end, here’s what she had to say about taking care of yourself: “Self care is an industry buzzword and it can be a laundry list of things to do to treat ourselves well. But self care is really about self respect, so instead of making a laundry list of things to do, look in the mirror and say, ‘Friend, what can I do for me today?’”
If you’re ready to dive in and add just a couple of items to bring more self care and self love to your every day, we invite you to browse our whole collection of gorgeous kimono robes and the wellness tools Jo demonstrated in her tutorial. Don’t forget to follow @gofitjo and @kimandono_ for your daily doses of wellness and luxury!