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The origins of FRA are to be found in Chinese Medicine texts dating back several thousand years. Acupuncture would be used on Chinese royalty to keep them looking healthy, beautiful and young. More recently, the practice has been updated and developed to offer a healthy and holistic alternative to cosmetic surgery, Botox, fillers, chemical peels, etc.


The Chinese have always known that beauty comes from the inside and that by changing the energy flow within the body, healing and rejuvenation naturally occur. The Chinese say that where Qi (energy) goes, blood flows. Where healthy blood flows, circulation is improved and the body feels and looks better. Natural beauty comes only from a healthy body. The current interest in anti-aging treatments and products has helped to promote FRA as an effective beauty tool. Popularised by celebrities, it has become an attractive option for people seeking to improve not only their looks but also health.




In the International Journal of Clinical Acupuncture, 1996, 90 percent of 300 cases treated with facial acupuncture had remarkable results with the first treatment. The report said there were fewer wrinkles, greater elasticity and tone of facial muscles.

Most people can expect to see improvements after three sessions.


The younger one is, the quicker one will respond. Many people see a change after just one treatment; others may need a course of ten to twelve treatments to see a marked improvement. People who smoke or have sunbathed a great deal will need more sessions as lines are usually deeper, the skin is dryer and often damaged. If one suffers from acne or other skin problems, a longer course of treatment may be needed to address the underlying internal disharmony. If one has scars, FRA can reduce redness and improve the look of the skin.


A minimum course of six treatments is recommended for everyone and for mature or problem skin or for those with chronic underlying imbalances, up to twelve sessions are recommended. This should be followed by monthly to 6 weekly ‘top-ups’ to maintain the work done and to keep one’s body in good health. The benefits of FRA go far beyond improving ones looks. Most people will feel less stressed, calmer, more energetic, have improved sleep, digestion, concentration, etc. and benefit from stronger immune systems resulting in an overall greater resilience to illness.




The initial consultation includes detailed questions about existing medical conditions, medication, general health i.e. digestion, sleep, diet, etc. and Chinese pulse and tongue diagnosis which give vital clues about one’s inner health. Any changes to the above will be noted at each subsequent session and the treatment will be adjusted accordingly, making each person’s treatment very specific and therefore more effective.


I also screen for health problems that would prevent me performing acupuncture/electro-acupuncture e.g. pacemakers, haemophilia, pregnancy. I also warn patients about the possibility of bruising (due to the many tiny capillaries on the face) which although is not common, can happen at any point in the course of treatment. To minimise this happening, very high quality, fine needles are used.




The acupuncture needles are inserted into meridian points on the body according to the information taken in the consultation and the TCM (Traditional Chinese Medicine) diagnosis made. This will aim to correct any imbalances in the body and thus improve associated facial problems. Needles are then inserted into the face. These are finer than the body ones to minimise any possible discomfort and reduce the possibility of bruising.


These needles work very specifically on:


The under-eye area

Sagging skin

Muscles around the neck, mouth, eyes, etc.

Muscle tension

Wrinkles and deeper lines

Blemishes, liver spots and skin conditions such as acne, spots, greasy or dry skin, etc.


Specific Actions of Facial Rejuvenation Acupuncture:


Increased collagen production and therefore greater skin elasticity

Improved blood flow to the face

Increased oxygen/nutrient supply to the skin and underlying muscle and tissue

Elimination of toxins

Improved lymph flow and drainage

Toning of flaccid muscles

Relaxation of tense muscles

Balancing of oily or dry skin


Electro-acupuncture may also be used to tighten sagging muscles and promote collagen production in deep lines. I may also use a jade roller to sooth inflamed the skin and promote lymphatic drainage under the eyes or a dermal roller which contains fine needles to promote circulation and collagen production. The session ends with a relaxing face massage using essential oils which enhances the work done with the acupuncture. Advice about skin products, diet, supplements, lifestyle, etc, will also be given to aid the treatment.

From the Chinese Medicine perspective this is achieved by improving the flow and strength of Qi (vital energy) and improving blood circulation (particularly to the face), balancing the Yin and Yang energetic functions of organs, tonifying deficiency or clearing excess of Qi, blood and fluids, Cold, Heat, Damp and Phlegm. If there are any imbalances in the body, they will eventually manifest in the face.


Everyone can expect to look healthier, fresher and less tired, as if one has been on holiday. FRA is altogether a subtler approach to beauty and is truly holistic.


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