Let me start by saying I’m not a beauty writer. It’s just that skin is our biggest organ so something must be said about what we’re essentially “eating” when we put stuff on it. Especially the face since that’s usually the first thing someone sees.
Nevertheless, based off of the amount of karaoke-style jade rolling videos I’ve made in the past couple of years on my social media, it’s safe to say that I am an beauty enthusiast. Like most creative ideas, I don’t even remember how these clips came about, but somehow I managed to make over 100 of them much to my followers curiosity…and eventually to my chagrin.
After countless clips of me lip-syncing everything from the Beastie Boys to Notorious BIG, in everything from private planes to baby beds, the curiosity of my community caught on and I was eventually ambushed by more people buying into jade rollers than my actual plant-based food biz. Soon I was getting tagged in clips of people with their own.
I was both flattered and annoyed. On one hand, it was cool I’d started a self-care cult of sorts but for someone who’s real job was to help people transform their diets, it was a bit disheartening to get people sliding into my DM’s about skin care instead of superfood.* People were literally attributing my “flawless skin” to this one device when in reality it had been decades of good lifestyle choices and a few good genes.**
Rolling with the homies had taken on a new meaning.
Ironically as I’ve gotten older, I’ve used less of products like the Ten o Six from my teenage years to the silly splurge of Creme de la Mer in college. These days my daily routine consists of cleansing with Dr.Bronner’s unscented soap, witch hazel (when I remember), moisturizing with grapeseed oil, bi-weekly bentonite clay masks and when I feel I need it, regular scrubs with a meshy-scrubby pad-thingy and a few times a year, a facial.
From there is a rotation of the various products I am sent as gifts which range from eye creams (apparently so potent they expire in weeks) to the latest cannabis concoction. Although I’ve been advised to put retinol in my rotation as I age, I’ve yet to find what product is best for me, so I’ve got work to do, too.
Nevertheless, in a society obsessed with eliminating the symptoms but not the cause, no one’s ever wanted to hear that I’ve only slept in my makeup maybe 10 times in my life. No one wants to hear the amount of water I drink or my sauna routine. No one wants to be reminded of all the things that we’ve always been advised to do that truly work. Instead, a centuries old stick made of jade became the holy grail of my good skin, lifelong habits be damned.
The feedback from something I set out simply to have fun with became a big reminder about the human psyche. I didn’t realize how deep the rabbit hole went when it came to “magic bullets.” I figured since I personally understood that this one tool (or any one thing) couldn’t possibly be the one key to miraculous skin, I figured everyone else understood…and I was wrong.
I’m also the wrong person to say how effective jade rolling actually is. Although I’ve got the techniques down to a science and it’s extremely relaxing and helpful for moisturizing, I actually have no idea how effective the big claims are because I’ve always been about the videos, my ritual usually lasts the amount of time it takes for me to sing along, shoot and post.
At the end of the day, the roller was just a gift added to a routine that’s already working. I can’t tell you what it does for things like puffiness because I generally don’t do (or eat) the things to cause things like puffiness in the first place.
Sorry to disappoint…
I’ve just been having fun with it, yes fun, an underrated concept that if anything, is the true magic bullet to good skin…and a good life.
My (Actual) Magic Bullet: Combination Skin
- Warm washcloth wipe
- NOW Foods Organic Grapeseed Oil + jade roller to apply (if I remember)
- Plain Jane Beauty Creme Minerals Foundation Stick
- Plain Jane Beauty Moisturizing Color Corrector
- Mineral Fusion Lip Tint
- Mineral Fusion Eyeliner
- Luxe Lips Vegan Lip Balm
- Double cleanse with Dr.Bronners and NOW Foods Organic Grapeseed Oil
- Moisturize with whatever freebie I have at the moment
- Aztec Secret Bentonite Clay Mask
- Skin Purging (through running and sauna)
- 6-8 hours of SLEEP (at least 5 days a week)
- No cigarettes
- Occasional alcohol
- Juice Fasting 2-4x per year, 10-14 days per session
- Predominantly plant-based diet
- Lots of water
- Heavy moisturizing on before, after and during flights
- Clean pillowcases, phone
- The power of positive thinking is underrated, VISUALIZING about clear skin is a big help!
My Favorite Freebies I’ve received
- Blemish Balm
- Ocean Cleansing Mudd
- Biodegradable Facial Wipes
- Superberry Hydrate and Glow Dream Mask
- Adaptogen Deep Moisture Cream
- Tri Active Exfoliant
- Pumpkin Enzyme Facial
Jade Rolling 101
What is a Jade Roller?
Usually made of jade or pink quartz jade rollers have dual ends, with one large side for the jawline and forehead and a smaller side for around the eyes.
Jade Roller Benefits
There are currently no clinical studies that prove jade rolling has any beneficial effects for skin, but has been claimed to help with draining the extra fluid that collects around eyes and cheeks which has long been an effective treatment without a roller. Lymphatic fluid is waste that is flowing out of your lymph nodes and needs to be returned back to the cardiovascular system which can also have a depuffing effect.
It also claims to boost blood circulation, reduce swelling, and allows for deeper penetration of skincare products.
Jade itself has been used for centuries to draw out negative energy and balance your ‘chi’ helping to soothe the mind and aid the body’s filtration and elimination organs. With that said Rolling with the homies had taken on a new meaning. Pink quartz versions are great as well but it’s actually their massaging effects, not the composition of the stones used themselves, that produce any benefits.
Jade roller is especially great for the sleep deprived or over stressed who could be puffy from crying.
How to use a Jade Roller
The key to jade rolling is to roll up, not down. Rolling up helps gravity’s downwards pull as the skin falls with age. With a clean face, and clean roller, apply gentle pressure (as not to rupture any pimples) in a sweeping motion from your neck up to jawline, up to temples then forehead up to hairline. Starting with the neck also helps with lymphatic drainage. Make sure to get the under eye area and crow’s feet, if applicable.
I’ve also read that jade rolling can help with lymph drainage if you start rolling from your nose as the central starting point, then rolling outward to the sides of your face; start in the middle of your chin and roll towards your ears; start at the top of your neck and roll down towards your chest.
When to use a Jade Roller
You can use a jade roller daily, morning and/or night, depending on how committed you are to extend the amount of time you spend on skincare.
Jade Roller Warnings
If you have acne, rosacea, eczema, cold sores or particularly sensitive skin, jade rolling might not be for you and can cause major issues and spread infection.
Jade Roller Care
Clean after each use to prevent bacteria build up with warm soapy water.
Buying a Jade Roller
Prices range from $5 to $150 but chances are if it’s under $20, it’s a fake stone dyed and polished to mimic jade.
*We could get into the #blackgirlmagic idea of melanin being a major plus for great skin but I’ve seen just as many people of color with bad skin as anyone else.
** As a result of my Instagram tribe becoming distracted from the only reason I’m on IG (to promote my food business) I moved to Tik Tok. Although I’ll still occasionally post on Instagram, I’d rather keep it a true hobby, plus the Tik Tok demo is so young they aren’t taking skin care (or themselves so seriously (yet).