No more need to buy jade rollers on Amazon — the downtown creative set now has a bricks-and-mortar destination to shop for holistic skin-care goods at the intersection of Manhattan’s Lower East Side and Chinatown neighborhoods.
GingerChi quietly opened its doors at 54 Henry Street in November. Originally founded as an Esty shop in 2011, GingerChi sells essential-oil-based facial and body skin-care, along with holistic skin-care tools and accessories such as jade rollers, gua sha stones, muslin cloths, dry brushes, aromatherapy products and silk pillowcases.
Founder Anna Lam developed holistic skin-care as a side business — her day job is as a creative director at an ad agency in Manhattan — after taking courses on the subject in London. Lam is of Cantonese descent, and in the past few years she’s seen the traditional-Chinese-medicine-inspired skin-care methodology she has always practiced turn into a mainstream trend, with tools like the gua sha stone and jade roller developing cult followings. “They’re selling like gangbusters,” Lam said of the roller. “This is why I’m getting more business — everyone wants to do it the natural way.” She also sells a mini jade roller designed for the under-eye area — it is said to reduce dark circles and puffy eyes.
Lam peddles a variety of more obscure holistic items, including a rose quartz roller and the Jade Chi Mask Therapy. The intricately woven mask is comprised of 100 percent grade A Xiuyan jade, and per Lam has been used for thousands of years by empresses in China — wearing the mask is said to soothe and relax facial muscles, reduce inflammation and improve blood circulation.
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Jade rollers aside, GingerChi carries a variety of skin-care items, including serums, cleansing and massage oils and mists that Lam formulates herself. Included with most products are instructional packets detailing how the products should be massaged into the skin to properly maintain chi in the body.
Lam’s entire GingerChi line is formulated around maintaining chi, the Eastern concept of life force energy, according to Lam. Ginger essential oil is the most common ingredient used throughout the line — it is said to have a vast array of healing properties, from stimulating circulation to improving the immune system.
Prices range from $12 for an essential oil roll-on to $65 for the Whole Woman Nourish treatment trio, a set of oils targeted at women’s health.