If you’ve got dry skin or want to minimize wrinkles, discover a Chinese Reflexology foot point that increases the circulation of qi and blood to your face so that you can hydrate your skin from the inside out. You’ll also learn the Traditional Chinese Medicine theory behind wrinkles and what you can do to replenish your internal “moisturizing” yin.
The anti-aging industry in the United States is estimated to be worth about $50 billion dollars a year. But the general approach to beauty is completely backwards. The focus is on applying creams to temporarily minimize the appearance of wrinkles and to create an artificial glow.
This reminds me a lot of the fitness industry. The emphasis is on working out, and building big muscles that people can see on the outside. Actually, come to think of it, some martial arts are like this too.
I remember in my early twenties, I started taking Karate. My father, a Tai Chi master, chastised me for going to Karate class. He told me it was all about external strength. Sure, that was great when you’re young, but when you’re older, internal strength was more important. Being young, I didn’t truly appreciate the magnitude of his words.
Having big muscles or doing fancy kicks is a visible show of strength. The external body might be powerful, but the inside is weak. By “inside,” I’m not referring to core muscle strength. That’s important too, but what I’m talking about is the body’s internal organs and energy meridians. They’re what make you strong and influence your overall health and vitality.
The same is true for beauty. There’s too much emphasis on temporary fixes, applying stuff on your skin, or using surgery to achieve a younger appearance. What if there was a simpler solution that starts from the inside?
Instead of focusing on the outside, focus on the inside
If you strengthen and harmonize your body from the inside, this will improve your appearance on the outside. I attribute this approach to my younger-than-my-age appearance. The focus should be on the health and strength of your primary organs and energy meridians. When your healthy and harmonious on the inside, your skin and face naturally glow.
One time, I was walking in San Francisco with two friends. One of the friends was in her late 30s, the other was in her early 60s, and I was smack dab in the middle.
I’m not sure how we got on this topic, but the older friend looked at my face, and remarked, “Holly you have no wrinkles. You look younger than her!” She gestured to our 30-something friend who was ten years younger than me.
I don’t have a beauty routine, nightly ritual, or use any special creams to my face. In fact, I actually dislike the feel of moisturizer on my face, so I almost never use any on my face. I could probably count with my fingers the number of times I’ve applied moisturizer to my face this past winter. Instead, my “beauty routine” consists of washing my face with hand soap. Yes, hand soap—whatever bar of soap happens to be sitting next to the sink.
This is contrary to what the beauty industry tells us to do, so why do I look younger than my chronological age?
You can’t attribute it all to genetics. Yes, I know that everyone says that Asians look younger in general. But my two friends were also Asian, so that leveled the playing field.
So here’s the secret to looking younger and having really good skin… Be healthy and harmonious on the inside.
Yin and Yang
Want to understand the ancient Chinese Medicine theory behind this approach to looking younger?
Let’s start with yin and yang. They’re an essential cornerstone of Chinese philosophy and Traditional Chinese Medicine. Yin is the black shape, and it represents female, night, rest, internal, and water. Yang is the white shape, and it represents male, daytime, external, action, and fire.
These two elements are always in a state of dynamic balance, and they depend on each other in order to exist in harmony. Take away one and the yin yang symbol collapses. It’s just like real life. You can’t have day without night, or action without rest.
According to Chinese Medicine theory, your body is comprised of yin and yang elements. Yin represents the structures and substances, while Yang represents the energy and processes.
And just like a yin yang, in order for your body to be in balance—or in other words, healthy—the body’s yin and yang elements must be in balance. When you think of the body in terms of yin and yang, it’s easy to see what’s at the root of dry skin and wrinkles. Remember, yin is water and yang is fire.
Chinese Medicine believes that our yin and yang elements are strongest when we are young, but they start to wane as we age. As you get older, yin becomes less abundant and this applies especially to women because yin represents the feminine. Women are naturally more yin than men so when yin starts go lower, women are more likely to be affected by what Chinese Medicine refers to as yin deficiency.
Because Yin also represents water, it’s the moisture in the body. It’s your internal moisturizer, or maybe a better term is it’s your yin-ternal moisturizer. And since I’m playing with words here, you could say it’s your yin-ternal fountain of youth.
When yin is low, the skin is dry, and that makes a person much more likely to have wrinkles. Just think about a smoker and how they tend to have premature wrinkling. From a Chinese Medicine perspective, it’s because the smoker is introducing the fire element—the cigarette smoke—into their lungs.
In Chinese Medicine theory, the health of the lungs is reflected in the skin. The drying in the lungs results in a yin deficiency in the overall body, and that’s what leads to the appearance of wrinkles.
Although yin and yang naturally decline with age, the choices we make throughout our lives influence the levels of yin and yang in our bodies. We have control over our health because we can make choices that support our body’s yin and yang elements.
The way to counter the effects of declining yin is to safeguard and replenish your yin. That’s the approach that I’ve taken throughout my life. I don’t try to look younger or try to keep my face wrinkle-free. I just try to live a balanced and healthy life. The results show up on my face because our inner health is reflected in our outer appearance.
While we can apply creams and make-up to temporarily change our appearance, this doesn’t address the underlying imbalances in the body. However, when you strengthen and harmonize the body‘s internal organs and energy meridians—which strengthen and balance your body’s yin and yang—then your internal health shows up in your face, and you glow from the inside out.
To learn more, watch the video to discover:
- How to massage the Chinese reflexology point for the face
- Foods to eat for replenishing your yin, and which foods to avoid because Chinese Medicine considers them to have a drying effect on the body
- Ways to improve the circulation of qi and blood through your face