Take your skincare practice to the next level with a selfie marma massage. Ananda's Director of Spa Training, Gregory Ugrin, shows you how to connect the dots - By Parizaad Khan Sethi
What if you magically discovered a dead-simple trick that would energize your skin, nix facial tension, dial down puffiness, boost muscle tone and pump up collagen production? Added bonus: it would help rebalance body and mind as well. You know you’d be all over it; we sure would.
Lucky for us, this mystical practice does exist, filed in ancient texts under ‘Genius Ayurvedic techniques to embrace ASAP. Known as marma point massage or marma therapy, it is similar to reflexology and acupressure, in which gentle pressure is used on specific points. (In Sanskrit, marma means vulnerable or sensitive zones.)
Gregory Ugrin, director of spa training at Ananda in the Himalayas knows a thing or two about these hot spots. “Marma points are vital areas based on 107 main energy points that correspond to the energy channels (chakras) and meridians (nadis) of the body. In Ayurveda, these points are stimulated to signal the body to produce what it needs to heal the body, mind and consciousness,” he says.
Stimulating marma points is a subtle energy practice and not just a physical massage, so in the beginning you may not notice much of a difference from a regular facial massage. “As you continue exploring the energetics of your marma points, you may begin to refine your sensitivity and attunement and begin to sense the energy state of each point,” says Ugrin.
Using the chart below, he explains how a short daily massage on the face, neck and décolleté can support balance and revitalize your entire being.
Ground and center yourself with three deep belly breaths. Briskly rub palms together for a full thirty seconds to awaken healing energy in the hands, and gently place cupped hands over your eyes. Tune into the tingling sensation of warmth and light flowing from your hands into your eyes and third eye, and relax.
With light strokes, apply moisturizer to the entire face, neck and décolleté. Using the numbered points as your guide, with your middle and index fingers first locate marma points 1-9 and try to sense the energy center. Stimulate the marma point by massaging
When massaging each point, use light pressure for the delicate skin near your eyes, and deeper pressure in areas where you sense any muscular tension, such as between the brows. You can revisit key marma points up to three times, as desired.
End the cream massage with point 9, the Hridaya, the marma point over the heart center. Complete the moisturizer application with gliding strokes including your face, jaw, neck and décolleté.
For an energy boost, with dry hands, or using your favorite Ayurvedic hair product, give yourself a quick scalp massage with firm pressure from all ten fingers. Complete your head massage with several firm presses to the final marma point, located on the very top of your head — the Adhipati.
is a beauty and wellness editor based in New York. She was the former beauty editor at Vogue India and now serves as a contributing editor for the magazine. At age 5, Parizaad fell in love with an old cream blush she found in the back of her mother’s drawer, and has been in awe of the transformative power of beauty ever since. When she’s not writing about beauty, she researches advances in skincare as a hobby, and is constantly guinea-pigging herself in the name of beauty.
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