Regular massage, especially on the head, is known to regulate and balance Vata Dosha, while also promoting sound sleep, improving complexion, increasing skin elasticity, and reducing anxiety.
What is a Marma?
Marmas are energy centers located over Chakras where all Doshas and Prana are present in a highly charged state. In Western medicine something similar would be a neural plexus. Applying light pressure can have a variety of effects on the mind and body, depending on which - or how many - marmas are being influenced. Stimulating Marma points is also effective in promoting balance. Regular massage of the facial marmas is considered to enhance the effectiveness of improving one’s complexion, pacifying Vata Dosha, and promoting a calm mind.
- Begin with a clean face using an Ayurvedic cleanser (preferred) suited for your type of skin
- Use a Dosha specific oil/serum for the massage.
- With each direction below, take one or two drops of oil onto the fingers of each hand. Each instruction should be repeated 3-4 times. Marma points should be massaged gently in a circular clockwise motion with the middle finger.
Neck – with both palms, lightly massage upwards from collarbone to chin.
- Chin – place the index finger of the right hand in the cleft above the chin, and the middle finger beneath the chin. Slide the fingers up the jaw line to the right ear. Repeat on the left side using the left hand.
- Cheeks – use the index fingers massage from chin to nose along the smile line, then with the palms massage the cheeks upwards from edge of mouth to the temples
- Eyes – place the ring finger beneath the eyebrow where it meets the nose and glide outwards using a very light touch, following the eye socket around beneath the eye and back to the starting point.
- Third eye – starting at the side of each nostril, use the index and middle fingers to massage up the length of the nose continuing on to the middle of the forehead, the site of the ‘third eye’ or 6th chakra.
- Using the middle and ring fingers of one hand massage from the bridge of the nose between the eyebrows upwards towards the hairline
- Using all 4 fingers of the right hand sweep the fingers from left to right across the forehead , then use the left hand and sweep fingers from right to left across the forehead
The Marma Points
Finish by massaging each of the marma points below using the middle finger, 3-4 circles clockwise - gently and slowly.
- Center of the chin
- The corners of the mouth
- Between nose and upper lip
- The outer corners of the nose
- Center of cheekbones
- Lower lids, just above the cheekbones – this skin is too delicate for massage, just press gently
- Junction between eyebrows and nose, on the lower part of the eyebrow ridge
- Third eye (6th chakra)
- Crown of the head: place hands on crown of head and gently massage scalp and head.
This is a wonderful ritual to incorporate into your daily routine (dinacharya). Five minutes of self care on a regular basis can yield amazing benefits, not only for your skin but your mental wellbeing. Try this before bed, maybe add a couple drops of lavender to your scalp massage, and notice how your sleep is more sound and restored.