2020’s Trendiest Beauty Tool Is 5,000 Years Old
Meet the Kansa Wand.
If you haven’t hopped on the beauty tool train, then consider 2020 your starting line for a year of impossibly sculpted skin. Last time we checked, our bathrooms and vanities were covered in every variety of microcurrent, massaging, rolling, and LED-lit skin-care toys, but that doesn’t mean we ever stop searching for something new to add. So when we got wind that there is a device that has all the simplicity and ease of a jade roller, made of a material that is especially adept at removing built-up toxins (which, let’s be honest, we made sure to leave in 2019), we knew we had to try it out.
Meet the Kansa Wand, an alloy device that originated in India some 5,000 years ago—during the Bronze Age, for all you history buffs out there. It has long been a popular tool in Ayurvedic skin-care treatments, pre-dating both gua sha stones and jade rollers, and is now finding itself at the center of more Western beauty practices. Like with any beauty device, the benefits are directly related to how well and often you use it, so to get the lowdown on our newest beauty secret, we consulted Ayurvedic expert and founder of skin-care brand Uma, Shrankhla Holecek. Here’s everything she had to say about the history of the Kansa Wand, plus a step-by-step guide on how to use it to get bright, glowy skin.
Kansa Wand Origins
The name itself is the Hindi/Sanskrit term for bronze. The material used in Kansa Wands is a specialty alloy (or combination of metals) called “bell metal” that originated alongside Ayurveda practices roughly 5,000 years ago and was used to make everything from bells to drinking vessels. Copper is the primary metal, which, according to Holecek, is revered in Ayurvedic medicine for promoting lymphatic drainage and negating toxicity in organs. As she explains, “a better working lymphatic system can help the body naturally detox, preventing many ailments and disease.” Draining these toxins can also help depuff and sculpt the face, which is why so many beauty devotees are incorporating the tool into their skin-care routines.
Kansa Wand Treatment
The tool—which looks like something between an elongated doorknob and a miniature baseball bat—is used in marma point treatments, which, as Holecek explains, are different energy centers throughout the body. “Marma point therapy is believed to bring doshas and chakras into balance. [They] typically focus on stimulation of a subset of 107 of these marma points based on the results you're trying to achieve—from [the] alleviation of back pain to an all-natural facelift.” Stimulating the marma points in the face leads to greater stress release and lymphatic detox, which in turn reveals a more rested complexion (think brighter, lifted, and firmer) and less inflammation. Because Kansa Wands are made primarily of copper, an alkaline substance, the contact with your skin also helps to balance your skin’s pH, thereby minimizing breakouts and irritation.
How-To Guide For Facial Massage
Although the movements required with your Kansa Wand are a tad more precise (for both energy points and the location of your lymph nodes), it shouldn’t take more than three to five minutes during your morning skin-care routine. Just apply your favorite serum or oil before your massage—which, thanks to the wand’s copper, has an added skin-care bonus. Says Holecek, “[because] copper is a very conductive metal, it is a great cofactor in the presence of an enzymatic antioxidant to neutralize free-radical damage to the skin. Simply put, a Kansa Wand will enhance the function of any [antioxidant-rich] serum or oil you may be applying to your skin.”
1. Massage the wand in circles around the middle of the forehead five times in a counterclockwise direction. Repeat five times in a clockwise direction.
2. Draw the figure-eight pattern on the forehead five times. This calms the mind and emotions, stimulates memory, and improves concentration. It’s also helpful for relieving sinus headaches.
3. Massage in a zigzag pattern across the forehead five times, using gentle pressure.
4. Clench your teeth so that you can feel the jaw muscle. Massage with firm pressure in a circular motion on this point with the wand. Repeat five times.
5. Circle the cheekbone five times using firm pressure.
6. Move under the cheekbone. Massage upward and downward with firm pressure, moving from the corner of the mouth up to the earlobe and back to the corner of the mouth
7. Move to the jawline. Move down from the ear to along the jaw towards the chin, from the chin back along the jaw to the ear lobe.
How-To Guide for Lymphatic Drainage
If you’re feeling extra puffy, courtesy of last night’s sushi dinner or one too many glasses of wine, this technique will help you coax your cheekbones out of hiding, reduce overall inflammation, and promote maximum lymphatic drainage. Apply a neck or facial serum prior to using your Kansa Wand.
Front of the neck
1. Place the Kansa Wand on the front-left side of the neck, slightly above the collarbone.
2. Stretch the skin by gently sliding the wand inward toward the middle of the collarbone.
3. Repeat on the front-right side.
Side of the neck
1. Place the wand on the left side of the neck, below the ears.
2. Slowly move the tool down and back up.
3. Repeat on the right side.
Back of the neck
1. Place the wand on the back of the neck near the hairline.
2. Gently slide the wand down the neck toward the spine.
Set tool aside
1. Cup your hands under the arms.
2. Prepare the lymph nodes under the arms to help them accept lymph fluid from other areas of the body. Cup the palm under the armpit.
3. Gently pump the palm upward and toward the body.
4. Repeat on the other arm.
More Expert Tips
As with any skin-care tool, it is important to listen to your body and check in with how you are feeling as well as how it reacts during the massage. Says Holecek, “Feel free to go off course and focus on areas that may need more TLC. Make this your own ritual, and fit it into your schedule as you see best. The most important thing within Ayurveda is habit and repetition, so be patient in order to see results. Remember that it’s healing and building you from within, so the results are longer-lasting.”
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