lymphatic drainage: how it can benefit you and how to perform
Feeling sluggish, inflamed or swollen? This could be your body’s way of telling you that it’s time to detox – and by that, we don’t mean reducing or restricting what you’re putting into it, but rather helping cleanse your body of toxin build-up – with the help of lymphatic drainage.
how does the lymphatic system work?
A complex network of vessels, nodes, and organs make up your lymphatic system, that work in tandem with your circulatory system. Think of it as your body’s in-built detoxifier which works hard to get rid of ‘waste’ and plays a pivotal role in:
- Regulating fluid balance
- Filtering and flushing out toxins within the body
- Promoting strong immunity
- Boosting circulation of white blood cells that help combat infection and disease.
Over time, everything that comes into contact with our skin gets absorbed and processed by the lymphatic system – and for any number of reasons, lymphatic pathways can eventually become overloaded and blocked – with nowhere to transport the sweat, pollution and dirt it processes each day.
Stagnant lymphatic pathways result in an accumulation of unwanted bacteria and fluid that can create all kinds of problems: from general fatigue to bloating, puffiness and immune dysfunction. Fortunately, our lymphatic system is always running in the background (with lymph flow naturally prompted when we breathe, stretch and move) and it knows how to correct malfunctions like these.
But our lymphatic system can always do with a little encouragement.
what is a lymphatic drainage massage?
Massage is hailed for its stress-relieving and knot-releasing powers, but beyond that, it can also be the answer to a challenged lymphatic system. Because massage promotes circulation in the body, it encourages lymph vessels to find new pathways to drain waste and toxins back into the bloodstream, allowing your liver and kidneys to expel any unwanted bacteria from the blood.
The rebalancing benefits of lymphatic drainage have been observed since ancient times, and include:
how to stimulate your lymphatic system
So, where to begin? In order to reap the rewards of a lymphatic drainage massage, you should first target the areas where fluid tends to get stuck: your lymph nodes. These can be found in your face, neck, armpit, chest, abdomen and groin.
With a few simple tools you can manipulate the flow of fluid to ‘reboot’ your lymphatic system so it can work more efficiently – leaving you feeling lighter, tighter and more energetic as a result.
lymphatic drainage massage for the face using a gua sha
Gua sha, an ancient Chinese practice, involves using a smooth-edged tool to gently scrape and sculpt the skin, so you can wave goodbye to puffiness and welcome more definition!
For lymphatic drainage, start by applying a face oil or serum to enhance glide and avoid friction. Hold the gua sha tool at a 15-degree angle and lightly stroke it along your face, neck, and décolletage in an upward and outward motion. This technique helps to reduce swelling, promote circulation, and restore your skin’s healthy glow.
lymphatic drainage massage for the face using a jade roller
Jade rollers are another effective way to perform lymphatic drainage, and they offer a cooling sensation to soothe your skin. If you’ve ever had an endota Organics™ facial, you’ll likely have experienced a jade roller before.
To begin, apply a facial oil and then roll the jade roller upwards and outwards across your face and neck, focusing on areas prone to puffiness such as under your eyes and around the jawline. This method can diminish facial tension, reduce inflammation, and leave you feeling refreshed – better still, the rhythmic strokes of a jade roller helps your skincare penetrate into the deeper layers of your skin.
lymphatic drainage for the body using a dry body brush
Before showering, use your dry body brush in gentle, sweeping strokes up towards your heart. Start at your feet and work your way up the body to your legs, hips, abdomen, chest and arms. This technique helps to exfoliate your skin, enhance blood flow, promote detoxification and leaves you with a renewed sense of energy.
how often should you have lymphatic drainage massage?
We recommend performing either of the above facial techniques 2-3 times a week while you’re familiarising yourself with lymphatic drainage. Once you get into a routine and understand your skin’s tolerance for it, you’ll achieve best results doing it daily. Dry brushing is safe to perform daily, but again, be sure to listen to your body and if you feel any sensitivity, reduce the frequency.
Harness the benefits of this simple practice to unlock a healthier, more radiant you. Remember to be consistent, patient, and gentle during the massage, as the key to success lies in the harmony of these elements.
You might find that you already have everything you need to try your hand at a lymphatic drainage massage at home, and if not, we have you covered. So why not give it a try and see? One thing’s for certain: your body (and skin) will love you for it.
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