12 Best Gua Sha Tools of 2021 to Lift & Tone Your Skin
Jade roller connoisseurs move aside, Gua Sha is the new kid on the block. Actually, Gua Sha isn’t a new trend at all. In fact, Gua Shas are an ancient Chinese traditional medicinal tool once primarily used to relieve muscle pain, tension, and to promote overall healing (through improved circulation). It’s pronounced “gwah-shah” which originates from the Chinese word for scraping.
The idea behind the Gua Sha is this—energy (what the Chinese call “chi”), blood, and fluid can often become stagnate due to poor circulation. Everyday, about 20 liters of bodily fluids flow around the body. Roughly 2 to 3 liters are picked up by the lymphatic system and become lymph fluid (1). Build up of lymph fluid can cause swelling, increase the look of puffiness, and result in an overall bloated appearance around the stagnant areas. Gua Sha tools help to physically increase circulation, move any slow moving fluid, and aid in lymphatic drainage.
What is a Gua Sha? How to Use a Gua Sha Tool?
Gua Shas are simple flat tools typically made out of an energetic stone (such as jade or rose quartz). They come in a variety of shapes and sizes that are meant to perfectly contour the face, neck, and jawline during a Gua Sha massage session.
For a more thorough explanation, check out our quick How To Gua Sha Guide at the bottom of this article for more details. Using a Gua Sha tool is simple and takes less than 3 minutes. All you have to do is apply a cleanse your skin, apply a facial serum, and glide the Gua Sha across each section of your skin.
What Are the Benefits of a Gua Sha?
- Reduced risk of lines and wrinkles – Tension in the face (from anxiety and stress) may lead to an increase in wrinkles and fine lines (3). Massaging daily with a Gua Sha facial tool sculpts and tones the face shape, increases blood circulation (more than 10 times), and encourages collagen production (4).
- Depuffs and tightens skin – Lymphatic build up (due to stress, poor diet, lack of proper sleep) may manifest as puffiness around the eyes and the face. The gentle lymph stimulation helps to promote circulation which can reduce puffiness and tighten the skin.
- Increases Absorption of Serums – Did you know that using a Gua Sha to massage products into the skin can increase the number of active ingredients that are able to penetrate deep below the surface? (5). With circulation improving, the skin is also able to more easily absorb targeting moisturizers, serums and oils.
How to Choose an Authentic Gua Sha?
When shopping for a Gua Sha stone, beware of the fakes. Authentic Gua Sha tools are made with real crystals & stones like Jade, Rose Quartz, Blue Sodalite, and others. Fake Gua Sha tools are made from plastic, glass, and composite materials designed to look like real crystal, but offer none of the benefits of real crystal (such as durability, the ability to cold a cool temperature, and various specific energetic properties). You can usually spot a fake Gua Sha because it will be really inexpensive (<$15), lightweight, won’t stay cool for long when held, and breaks easily.
No need to become a Gua Sha expert overnight—we’ve taken the liberty of researching and reviewing dozens of Gua Shas to bring you this list of the best of the best. These Gua Sha stones are made by legitimate brands who use authentic crystals that are durable and healing. While each Gua Sha may be shaped differently, each one works on all areas of the face (including the neck, eyes, and jawline). Enjoy!
Price : $32
A beautiful authentic Jade Gua Sha stone sculptor made by one of our favorite organic brands--OSEA Malibu! This Gua Sha sculptor has the perfect shape for sculpting the particularly hard to reach areas around the neck, jawline, nose, and eyes. It has a nice weight and holds a cool temperature throughout the treatment. Big enough to be easy to manipulate without being too big for sculpting around the delicate eye area.
Shop *OSEA MALIBU – JADE GUA SHA FACIAL SCULPTOR
Price : $45
A stunning Rose Quartz Gua Sha facial massage tool from the serum experts themselves, Odacite. This luxurious, pretty, and high-vibration Gua Sha tool is made from Rose Quartz, which is said to encourage the feeling of love and self-love. What a perfect little stone to use to treat yourself to a daily facial massage! Super sturdy, nice large size, and comes with incredibly handy instructions for first-time users. A great gift for the beauty or crystal addict in your life.
Shop *ODACITE – CRYSTAL CONTOUR ROSE QUARTZ GUA SHA
Price : $125
Ready to get serious about your facial massage game? Then upgrade your Gua Sha to this Lanshin Pro Gua Sha tool made from the brand's signature Black Nephrite or He Tian jade. This luxurious treat really is the "swiss army knife" of facial massage tools. It has a textured edge for deeper massaging and tons of smooth curves in a variety of shapes for the rest of your face and body. The difference in your skin after using this high quality stone is shockingly noticeable. Worth the investment.
Shop *LANSHIN – THE LANSHIN PRO
Price : $65
One of our absolute favorite Gua Sha stones that we've tested made from authentic Bian Stone! Everything about this design was perfect---the curved bottom allows for easy massaging of the jawline and neck, the ridged edges were great for giving a deeper massage, and the authentic Bian stone brings in a bit of authentic Chinese healing. It depuffs like a champion after just a few swipes. A must try!
Shop *WILDLING – EMPRESS STONE FACIAL GUA SHA TOOL
Price : $54
Ready to get your skin workout on? You're going to need a few tools--namely this Jade Facial Workout Set from Skin Gym. Featuring a beautiful dual-sided Jade facial roller and an equally pretty Gua Sha facial sculpting tool, this kit includes everything you'll need to tighten, tone, and revive your skin. Both tools are well made, high-quality, and crafted from authentic Chinese Jade stone. The packaging makes this a great gift to give to your beauty-addicted loved ones.
Shop *SKIN GYM – JADE ROLLER & GUA SHA FACIAL WORKOUT SET
Price : $28
A cute little Gua Sha facial tool that comes in either Jade or Rose Quartz. While this Gua Sha is on the smaller side, it's just big enough to work well without slipping out of your hands. It has a nice contour on the top and bottom for massaging around the cheeks, forehead, and neck areas. The little heart-shaped bumps allow for delicate massaging around the eye area. Although colors vary due to natural stone formations, the Gua Sha we tried from Mount Lai was a brilliant dark green.
Shop *MOUNT LAI – THE GUA SHA FACIAL LIFTING TOOL
Price : $21
A lovely Xiuyen Jade Gua Sha crafted into a unique shape that's easy to grip and easy to use. One of the best things about this tool is the shape---it's so easy to grip and massage all over from the forehead to the shoulders. It never feels like it will slip out of your hands and is large enough to cover a wide surface area in a short time. Comes in a cute little package that can be retained for storage.
Shop *GINGERCHI – JADE GUA SHA FACIAL TOOL
Price : $45
This Gua Sha tool is made out of Green Aventurine (a form of quartz) instead of the traditional Jade. Like Jade, Green Aventurine is said to attract luck, prosperity, and abundance--so it's not a bad substitute at all. Like all Odacite Gua Sha tools, the stone is large enough to let you get a firm grip and the stone is a brilliant color. The Gua Sha also comes with a handy instruction guide for first timers--making this a great gift for beauty addicts of all levels.
Shop *ODACITE – CRYSTAL CONTOUR GREEN AVENTURINE GUA SHA
Price : $62
Such a spectacular Jade Gua Sha tool! Although this Lady Nephrite tool looks black, it is really just a deep green hue from the Black Nephrite (also known as He Tian Jade) and you can see the green if you hold it up to the light. This stone is heavy, large, and just a sight to behold. Black Nephrite has been associated with increased blood circulation when applied topically--and we definitely noticed that. Not as fun as the Lanshin Pro, but better for beginners. There is something to this stone.
Shop *LANSHIN – LADY NEPHRITE LUXURY JADE GUA SHA
Price : $32
This Rose Quartz Gua Sha is much bigger than the Gua Sha included in Skin Gym's Facial Workout sets. It has the classic teardrop shape with a textured end for deeper massaging. The stone we reviewed was a gorgeous pale pink that felt significant when held. It held a nice cool temperature and the curves were the perfect size for quickly massaging the cheeks, forehead, and neck. If you are specifically looking for a Gua Sha tool, then this is a better bet over then Skin Gym sets.
Shop *SKIN GYM – ROSE QUARTZ CRYSTAL GUA SHA SCULPTING TOOL
Price : $42
This square Rose Quartz Gua Sha tool comes with a handy instruction guide and beautiful storage case for safe keeping. The stone is fairly large and can easily be gripped while massaging around the face. The instruction guide shows you a variety of ways that you can use the square shape to stimulate circulation--which we found to be quite helpful. The case makes it easy to care for the stone and keep it clean between uses. A beautiful gift and a great value for the package.
Shop *VIE HEALING – ROSE QUARTZ SQUARE GUA SHA TOOL
Price : $45
Odacite is known for their highly potent facial serums, so it is not wonder they make a fantastic set of crystal Gua Sha tools to help work those serums into your skin. This Blue Sodalite Gua Sha tool has a useful shape, a beautiful color, and a sturdy design. It's a fairly large tool that you can get a good grip on while you massage your face and neck. It comes with a handy instruction guide on how to properly use and care for your new Gua Sha tool.
Shop *ODACITE – CRYSTAL CONTOUR BLUE SODALITE GUA SHA
HOW TO USE A GUA SHA
Using a Gua Sha Facial Sculptor is easier than you think! Once you get the hang of it, it’s actually quite easy to quickly Gua Sha frequently as a part of your daily skin care routine. Here’s how you do it:
Massage with Gua Sha: Hold the Gua Sha at a 15 to 30-degree angle against the skin. Then, in a sweeping motion, glide the tool in an upward/outward motion all over the face. Repeat 3-5 swipes on each section of the face. On the nose, use a downward motion when gliding. Use the smaller parts of the tool to work around the eyes. If your Gua Sha has a notched edge, use that to work around the jawline and eye-bones. Begin with light pressure, increasing slightly as you feel fit–but never fully press. If the tool begins to drag your skin, apply less pressure and add a drop of serum to the Gua Sha.
BEST FACIAL SERUMS FOR GUA SHA MASSAGE
No Gua Sha sculpting treatment would be complete without an amazing facial serum. Not only does a good facial serum help the Gua Sha tool to effortlessly glide across the skin, the Gua Sha massage helps the serum to better absorb into the skin. A true win-win! For a complete list of facial serum options (plus a quiz to help you choose), check out our Best Organic Facial Serums & Oils article. In the meantime, here are some of our favorite serums to pair with a Gua Sha massage:
Q: What are the benefits of Gua Sha?
A: Gua Sha offers an incredible amount of benefits not only for your face but your overall health as well. You may experience a reduced risk of lines and wrinkles, tighter skin, a release of toxin build up, and better absorption of your skincare products.
Q: What is Gua Sha used for?
A: Originally used in Traditional Chinese Medicine as a muscle and tension reliever, Gua Sha has entered the beauty market as an overall skin radiance tool. With consistent use, you may experience a reduced risk of lines and wrinkles, tighter skin, a release of toxin build up, and better absorption of your skincare products.
Q: Can Gua Sha be harmful?
A: Safe for use for most people and skin types, Gua Sha should be avoided by those who have recently had Botox injections to prevent any negative effects, and should never be used directly over cystic acne, pimples or open wounds as it can cause irritation and infection.
Q: Does Gua Sha help cellulite?
A: Gua Sha stimulates blood flow which could help with reducing the appearance of cellulite. The benefits of Gua Sha for cellulite have yet to be studied, but seeing that it’s a great overall health tool; it’s well worth it.
Q: Does Gua Sha help wrinkles?
A: Tension in the face (from anxiety and stress) may lead to an increase in wrinkles and fine lines (3). Massaging daily with a Gua Sha facial tool sculpts and tones the face shape, increases blood circulation (more than 10 times), and encourages collagen production (4).
- (1998) Encyclopedia of Immunology: Lymphatic System
- Scientific Proof of Bian Stone Healing
- (1954) SYMPTOMS OF ANXIETY AND TENSION AND THE ACCOMPANYING PHYSIOLOGICAL CHANGES IN THE MUSCULAR SYSTEM
- (2018) Ready for a close-up: The science behind face massage rollers.
- (2016) Skin Care Gets a Good Rub Down: The Role Massage Plays in Cosmetic and Skin Care
- (2017) Traditional Chinese Medicine Diagnosis “FACE MAPPING”