Indonesian facial acupressure = let’s look younger! – Metta Murdaya

8 Sep

A friend of mine once told me she saw a woman in a mall in Indonesia who looked remarkably like a much younger version of another friend of hers, known to look the part of an overdone party-goer. You know that look; it’s the “too much sun, cigarettes, alcohol, (and you can imagine what else) – with probably way too little sleep and recovery maintenance” look. I believe the term was ‘she looked 25 going on 40.’ She didn’t think twice that it could have been the same person – until a common friend said she was. How did she turn back the clock from years of partying to look younger and healthy over only a few months? Egads. Cosmetic surgery? Apparently not. Her secret? She had been getting the Totok Aura Wajah treatment regularly, which is a form of a traditional Indonesian facial acupressure. Upon hearing that, I of course, thought “I have to try me some of that!” In Jakarta, I found a place that was owned by a family who’s father is a master at this craft, Totok Aura – which is a combination of traditional acupuncture + Javanese massage that works to optimize your body’s energetic pathways, stimulating your body’s organs and nerves so they can work at its optimal levels, leaving your body at its healthiest. (No needles are used, just fingers of the therapist.) This treatment can be for your face, body, and other specialized areas to bring out inner beauty through bringing out your healthy energy in a natural way. In a small, clean building in the Bekasi area of Jakarta, this no-frills, professional, local establishment had several trained therapists to perform this treatment – which is nothing like I’d ever felt before. My therapist, Anita, started with systematically working on key pressure points on my face, starting with my chin, going around the outside of my face, then towards the forehead and around – I wasn’t familiar with the pattern her fingers were moving in around my face, but it was indeed relaxing and energizing at the same time. I felt my skin and the muscles below stimulated. Her fingers were amazingly strong; she was about half my size but boy, the power emanating from her fingers was deep, calming, and intense. The facial treatment was 45 minutes long, and it included (at the end,) a homeade fresh strawberry mask that was applied to the face to ‘infuse the skin with vitamins,’ she said. It was delightfully refreshing. After the treatment – how did I feel? Imagine how you feel after a good workout, but without the out-of-breathness or sweat. That’s how I felt. Pretty awesome. My skin felt tighter because I felt the muscles below were more awake, and I couldn’t help smiling about it. I could see how regular sessions could make a difference, as with many other Eastern medicine inspired treatments. The holistic benefits of the Totok Aura Wajah are as follows, according to traditional claims:
– Increases circulation, (increased fresh oxygen brought to the area makes skin radiant and glowing.)
– Helps maintain a youthful appearance and helps prevent wrinkles.
– Increases/restores skin’s elasticity and suppleness (no skin sagging!)
– Decreases insomnia, strengthens muscles in the face.
– Helps treat headakes, migranes, and vertigo from sinusitis.
– Naturally increases/brings out natural beauty.
(By the way, there are other Totok Aura treatments focusing on the body, breast area, vaginal area (fer real!) and for men, well you can guess where. No dirty thoughts please, it’s all for inner health benefits.) This treatment doesn’t replace regular facials, but definitely complements them.
I spoke to Dita (daughter of owner) and Ririe (cousin of Dita) about how one trains to be a therapist. She said the first part is to learn how to meditate and control your breathing, as it is in the power of breath that the steady strength and effectiveness of the accupressure (done by the fingers) is controlled. She said one of the requirements is with strength of breath alone, these therapists have to be able to dent a green (not red!) apple with their fingers without nails, and without bending fingers for levarage. (Reminds me of the wax-on, wax-off Karate Kid exercises that train for real battle, ha.) But it’s true. Different fingers are used to press on the client depending on the size of the nerve or area targeted. The complexity of the treatment was clearly way deeper than what I could feel on the table, but the effects felt pretty extraordinary. Unfortunately, I don’t think it’s available in the US, so I resort to a healthy diet, yoga, and taking care of my skin with the JUARA Back to Basics set. But if anyone is in Jakarta and wants to give it a go, I recommend where I went:

Name: Grya Aura (pronounced: gree-ah ah-oo-rah)
Address: Jalan Jatiwaringin, Komp. AURI Waringing Permai, Blok A No. 11, Jakarta Timur.
Tel: +62.21.8616184 (I suggest you call for reservations and directions.)
Email: gryaaura@yahoo.com (And they have a facebook page)
Website: http://www.gryaaura-rinirini.blogspot.com/
(There are other places that are fancier and costlier, but I thought this place was pretty much the real deal. Good stuff.)
-METTA MURDAYA

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