Ayurveda, or otherwise known as 'the Mother of all healing' has been practised in India for over 5 thousand years, and is a holistic approach to healing science. Just like the roots of a tree govern the entire plant, Ayurveda sees our mind as the operational centre for our entire body. Since it began Ayurveda has used the Indian head massage or 'Shiroabhyanga' (pronounced she-ro-abi-anga) has been used daily by millions as part of their essential routine and practised in luxury spas worldwide because of its relaxing effects and many known health benefits that help create beauty from the inside out:
- Supports the nervous system by alleviating stress
- Stimulates the lymphatic system to eliminate toxins
- Relieves neck and shoulder stiffness
- Increases oxygen uptake and improves circulation
- Eliminates dandruff and nourishes the scalp
- Promotes hair growth and restores strength and shine
During these stressful and uncertain times, we all need to prioritise our health and make sure we are taking the time to relax. We've got the step-by-step guide from the experts themselves on how to perform an Indian Head Massage on yourself or a loved one to reap the therapeutic benefits this ancient technique has to offer.
How to perform an Indian Head Massage
Step 1: Pick your oil
Depending on what your main goal is, whether that's relaxation, to soothe inflammation, aid hair growth or help you get a better night's sleep, you will need to select the correct oil blended to target your concern.
For hair growth, strength & a healthy scalp
Formulated with rare amino acids and rejuvenating actives, this award-winning hair serum nourishes the scalp and adds thickness and shine to lack-lustre hair. Tackling the effects of pollution, stress and build up which can cause greying and thinning of the hair, the hero treatment oil combines refined Ayurvedic elixirs to activate follicles at a cellular level helping to reconstruct, protect and deliver intense hydration.
For relaxation and sleep
Helping to calm a busy mind, the Mauli Surrender Body Oil is a comforting blend that will help balance energy and the nervous system to alleviate anxiety and stress.
For revitalisation and warmth
Blended with Eucalyptus, Juniper Berry and Ginger, this restorative oil helps boost the immune system and can even help alleviate cold and flu symptoms, working to clear blocked sinuses.
For soothing inflamation and easing stress
Formulated to soothe the skin and the mind, the Serenity Oil works to eliminate toxins and balance the nervous system to encourage relaxation and healing.
Step 2: The Scalp
Start off by warming your chosen oil by rubbing it between your fingers. Then, working in small circular motions, massage the oil into your scalp starting at the centre of the head and moving out towards the front and back. Take your time with this and finish by massaging the temples in a clockwise direction.
Step 3: The Neck and Shoulders
The neck and shoulder can hold a lot of tension that we aren't aware of, so take some time to target this area. Looking down slightly to stretch out the muscle, massage the back of the neck by squeezing and rolling the muscles with your fingers. Begin at the top of the neck and work your way down, first with one hand and then with the other hand rubbing the oil in as you go. Continue with the sides of the neck rolling right out to the shoulders.
With the neck and shoulders relaxed now slowly rotate the head first anti-clockwise and then in a clockwise direction.
Step 4: The Face & Ears
Concentrating now on the face, sweep the hands from the centre between your eyebrows, down around the cheeks to the centre of your chin and back up the sides of the nose. Repeat several times.
Next, starting with two fingers behind the ears massage however feels good all around the ear area; ear lobes, behind the ears and really squeezing the tops of the ears on the cartilage.
Now with just the index and middle finger massage in a small clockwise direction on the point of the third eye for around a minute. Just above the point between your eyebrows.
Step 5: The Head
Finishing off where you began, lastly, move your fingers to the very top of your head, the area associated with the crown chakra, again massage in a circular direction for just a minute.
To finish and ensure the benefits of this nurturing practice absorb properly into the body, wrap your head with a warm towel and rest for at least ten minutes. Either wash out your oil or if using the Grow Strong Hair Oil leave in, sit back and relax.
Shop the full range of head and body oils available on lookfantastic here.