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Does Gua Sha Help With Acne? (Everything You Need to Know)

Gua sha, a practice rooted in traditional Chinese medicine, has gained significant traction in the world of modern skin care. With its many claimed benefits, many wonder: does gua sha help with acne?

This question is becoming especially prevalent as many seek natural remedies for this skin condition. Let's delve into this topic and uncover the truth.

Also read: How to choose the best acne treatment

Biggest Take-Aways:

  • Gua sha, rooted in traditional Chinese medicine, offers benefits like promoting circulation and lymphatic drainage but doesn't directly address acne's root causes.
  • Using gua sha on active breakouts can further inflame and spread bacteria, making proper disinfection vital.
  • Natural acne solutions, like hydration and diet adjustment, can be combined with tools like gua sha for a holistic approach.
  • Exposed Skin Care stands out as an effective treatment for acne-prone skin, harmonizing with holistic tools for comprehensive skincare.

Top image of hands holding gua sha tools

The Lure of Gua Sha in Skincare

Before addressing the query, "Does gua sha help with acne?" it's vital to understand what gua sha is and the reasons behind its popularity.

What is Gua Sha?

Originating from ancient Chinese traditions, gua sha involves scraping the skin using a flat tool, often made of jade, rose quartz, or bian stone. The primary purpose is stimulating blood circulation, promoting lymphatic drainage, and offering a soothing massage for facial muscles.

Benefits of Gua Sha

The gua sha facial massage provides a multitude of benefits:

  • Lymphatic Drainage: Helps detoxify the skin by moving excess fluids toward lymph nodes.
  • Stimulation of Collagen Production: This can potentially reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.
  • Reduction of Puffiness: The massage can help move stagnant lymph, thereby reducing puffiness.
  • Improving Blood Circulation: Stimulates circulation, potentially giving the skin a more radiant appearance.

Woman looking at face on mirror happy

However, while these benefits sound promising, it's crucial to address our primary concern: does gua sha help with acne?

Gua Sha and Acne: The Myth Debunked

Gua Sha for Acne-Prone Skin

While many believe that stimulating lymphatic drainage can reduce skin congestion, this doesn't necessarily mean that gua sha can help clear acne.

While it can improve blood and lymph circulation, leading to a healthier skin appearance, it doesn't directly treat the underlying causes of acne, such as bacteria or oil production.

Risks of Using Gua Sha on Breakouts

Here are some concerns regarding using gua sha for acne:

  • Spreading of Bacteria: Without proper disinfection, gua sha tools can spread bacteria over the face, contributing to breakouts.
  • Risk of Breaking the Skin: If one is not careful, the tool can break the skin, especially over raised pimple areas, leading to further irritation.
  • Potential Aggravation: Using the gua sha stone over active breakouts can inflame them more, leading to increased redness or even potential scarring.

Pimple breakout on womans chin

Comparing Gua Sha and Jade Roller

Like a jade roller, the gua sha tool offers benefits like reducing puffiness and stimulating circulation. However, neither tool directly addresses the causes or treatment of acne.

How to Safely Use Gua Sha

If you're still keen on incorporating gua sha into your skincare routine, here's how to do it safely:

  • Use Light Pressure: Heavy pressure can break or inflame the skin. Gentle strokes are sufficient to stimulate circulation.
  • Avoid Active Breakouts: Never gua sha over broken skin or active pimples.
  • Clean Your Tool: It's important to clean your gua sha tool after every use to prevent the spread of bacteria.
  • Always Cleanse Beforehand: Ensure your face is clean and apply a face oil of your choice to lubricate the skin.

Woman washing her face

Other Natural Acne Solutions

While the answer to "Does gua sha help with acne?" leans towards the negative, there are other natural methods to consider:

  • Hydration: Drinking plenty of water helps to hydrate the skin from the inside out.
  • Diet: Some find that reducing dairy or processed foods reduces their breakouts.
  • Face Oils: Some oils, like the balm of gilead, have properties that can help with breakouts.

Benefits of Using Exposed Skin Care for Acne Management

When it comes to acne management, Exposed Skin Care stands out for its efficacy across different skin types. Merging traditional knowledge with modern science, it addresses the root causes of acne, delivering noticeable results for those struggling with breakouts and acne.

Exposed Skin Care Expanded Kit

Some key benefits of Exposed Skin Care are:

  • Tailored for All Skin Types: This product line caters to every skin's needs, whether you have acne-prone skin or occasional blemishes.
  • Cleanses the skin: Just like how facial gua sha helps move stagnant lymph, Exposed Skin Care assists in cleansing the skin.
  • Complementary with Facial Tools: It's recommended to use Exposed products before you use a jade roller or use your gua sha. This ensures a clean canvas and can amplify the acne benefits of these tools.
  • Targets Cystic Acne: One of the hardest types to treat, cystic acne sees a noticeable improvement as the products help prevent further breakouts and reduce inflammation.
  • Perfect Addition to Skincare Routine: Incorporating Exposed Skin Care in your routine ensures your skin is disinfected and ready for treatments every time you massage your face.

Overall, Exposed Skin Care, when paired with tools like gua sha, can drastically improve the areas of your face affected by acne.


Navigating the nuanced world of skincare, one often stumbles upon tools and treatments like gua sha that promise many benefits. However, as emphasized, while gua sha aids acne by moving stagnant fluids and boosting circulation, it might not be the panacea for those with acne-prone skin.

Modern skincare regimes, rooted in evidence-based practices, target acne by reducing inflammation and addressing root causes. These solutions are specifically tailored to tackle different skin issues and deliver visible results.

Integrating traditional techniques like gua sha into a skincare routine can be beneficial, but it's essential to recognize where the sha works and where modern treatments take precedence. Holistic skincare is about harmonizing the old and new.

In summary, to achieve radiant skin and reduce persistent acne, it's pivotal to have a comprehensive approach. Products like Exposed Skin Care offer a promising pathway to clear, healthy skin when coupled with traditional practices.


Does gua sha help with acne scars?

While gua sha can improve the skin's overall appearance over time, there's no concrete evidence suggesting it reduces the appearance of acne scars.

How often should you use gua sha?

For visible results, using the gua sha tool about three times a week is recommended.

Can gua sha reduce fine lines and wrinkles?

Yes, gua sha can help stimulate collagen production, potentially reducing the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.

What's the difference between a jade roller and gua sha?

Both tools offer different benefits. While a jade roller primarily reduces puffiness, gua sha focuses on improving circulation and lymphatic drainage.

Should I use face oil when doing a gua sha facial massage?

Applying face oil helps the gua sha tool glide smoothly over the skin and provides hydration.