Intimate TCM: The Facial Reflexology Tool - Root + Bones

Intimate TCM: The Facial Reflexology Tool

The traditional practice of massaging the face to relieve tension, enhance circulation, and promote healing dates back thousands of years and spans diverse regions of the world, but the facial reflexology tool is a special way to cultivate an intimate, embodied connection to the rich wisdom of TCM. This little wand contains the energies of Yin and Yang – reflected in its dual point design, and expands upon TCM principles of energy meridians that promote the flow of Qi for benefits as varied as improved sleep quality, headache relief, mood support, digestion, reproductive balance, and skin health. 


Facial reflexology is premised on the understanding that the face is a microcosm of the body as a whole, so it’s no surprise that there’s a huge concentration of meridian points on the face (not to mention the ears) that correspond to our bodily systems and organs. When these points are gently stimulated, communication is established and energy is released, often in a very felt sense. Spending a few minutes intentionally connecting to ourselves in this way is such a nourishing, accessible ritual that reminds us of the power of our own participation in restoring balance.


When it comes to balance, the tool is specifically designed to help promote harmony between the Yin and Yang energies in our bodies, as well as in our perceptions. The smaller head, best for targeted applications, is more Yang in nature, able to counteract areas that feel more flat and lifeless (indicative of Yin excess) with its stimulating sharpness. The larger head is more Yin in nature, and delivers relaxing massage to counteract pain that is more sharp (Yang) by gently smoothing it out. As we attune to the energetic imprints held in our faces / bodies, we are able to intuit the applications that address disharmonies, while also remembering to honor the inherent value of each.


While facial reflexology has gained popularity for beauty purposes, its potential benefits are clearly more far-reaching. Samantha Story, who was interviewed on the blog last year, made a strong case for the external expressions of our internal worlds, especially beauty as affected by the flow of Qi and our emotional states. She said, “We experience the world through our senses and they’re mostly on the face. So, I really see facial work as a way to renew our ability to see the world clearly, to speak our truth, to hear clearly…” And, perhaps, to be clarified in a way that radiates from the internal to the external. 


Although it’s called a facial reflexology tool, this wand is versatile enough to offer personalized acupressure treatments to yourself or a loved one. It can be so fun to look up the point for either an ailment or a desired benefit, and get to experimenting in the comfort of your home.