How your skin issues tell you what going on inside your body

We often hear “don’t trust first impressions.” While that is true, we can often pick up many clues about people from first meetings. Chinese facial mappings are a great example of this. Problems on a specific area of your face may contain clues of the internal cause. Chinese facial maps associate different parts of the face with internal organs. (The Chinese definition of an organ is different than the biomedicine definition. A main difference is that TCM focuses on the energy of the organ, rather than the physical organ).

Since each organ in TCM corresponds to an element in the 5 Element Theory, each part of the face also corresponds to an element – fire, water, earth, wood, or metal.

Five Element Dermatology

(refer to the face diagram below)

Fire – Heart and Small Intestine
The fire element keeps the face red and lustrous. Disharmony from heat or emotional stress can cause heat, inflammation and pain. To soothe the fire element, avoid spicy foods and refrain from anger.

Earth – Spleen and Stomach
When the earth element is in harmony, the skin is healthy and the lips are moist and healthy. Humidity, heavy foods,dairy and over-thinking can cause conditions such as acne and eczema.

Metal – Lung and Large Intestine
The metal element keeps the skin strong and moisturized, and regulates the pores. Dryness, wind, heat and grief are factors that can cause skin sensitivity.

Water – Kidney and Urinary Bladder
The water element keeps head hair shiny and moisturized. Disharmony in this element can cause greying of hair. The Kidneys and Bladder also control water metabolism, and any dysfunction can cause edema.

Wood – Liver and Gallbladder
The wood element loves to move freely and is easily effected by stress and anger. When the Liver is healthy, it manifests in soft, shiny head hair. Keep your wood element healthy by maintaining an easy-going attitude!

While Chinese facial mappings are useful, they only provide a part of the picture in your overall health. Make sure to see a licensed acupuncturist who can help you with your health goals!

– Aquarius Acupuncture

Here is another great source on Chinese facial mapping


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