We’re always looking for ways to stretch and exercise our bodies to keep them in tip top shape as long as possible as we age. In the pursuit of health and youth, we often save exercising for everything below the neck and stick to lotions and potions (and surgery) for our faces. What if you could use the same principles you apply to the rest of your body to workout your face, keep it toned and reduce wrinkles? Facial yoga is a favourite of A-list celebrities like Jennifer Aniston and Meghan Markle, and if it's good enough for them, it's good enough for us!
Manual Osteopath and chiropractor Dr. Liza Egbogah walked the hosts through some popular facial yoga poses to tighten, tone and relax face muscles without making a trip to the doctor. Before the rise of facial injections, facial yoga was popular among women as a way to keep faces looking youthful. It might not be as quick, but with a little patience and commitment, your results could be just as good.
What are we doing exactly?
Facial yoga does for your face what regular yoga does for your body: relaxes and tones muscles. Relaxing your face through a series of exercises smoothens the tension-filled expressions of surprise, anger or happiness we make every day. These exercises specifically work to tone muscles in the face and create lift while also stretching areas that might contract to make fine lines and wrinkles. Some work on multiple muscle groups in the face and others target certain areas specifically.
Lion Pose – Whole Face
This exercise works to stimulate and tone the whole face.
Sit with your hands placed on your thighs. Drop your jaw and open your mouth wide. Stick your tongue out forcefully downwards toward your chin. Then, while breathing through your mouth, make a sound from your throat that sounds like a lion’s roar. Repeat several times.
Fish Face – Cheek Muscles
This exercise stretches your cheek muscles and helps give them lift, working to diminish the appearance of laugh lines.
Suck your cheeks and lips inwards to replicate a puckered fish face. Holding that position, attempt to smile. You should feel a burn in your cheeks and jaw. Relax and repeat.
Chin Lift – Tighten Chin and Jaw
This exercise can tighten up a double chin and give a more defined jawline by stretching your jaw, throat and neck.
Sit or stand comfortably and tilt your head upwards toward the ceiling, following with your eyes. Tighten your lips and pucker as if to kiss the ceiling and hold for a few seconds before releasing. Repeat several times.
Lip Pull – Cheeks and Jawline
This exercise tones most of the face and can give you the appearance of higher cheekbones and naturally lift a sagging jawline to make it more defined.
Sit or stand comfortably, keeping your face looking straight forward. Lift your lower lip as much as you can by pushing your lower jaw out until you feel a stretch in your chin muscles and jawline. Hold the position for a few seconds, then relax and repeat.
Air Gargle – Cheek Muscles
This exercise tones cheeks and can help create a youthful fullness to them while also tightening up a double chin. Fill your mouth with air, keeping your lips tight together. Then transfer the air from one side of your mouth to the other, filling your cheeks each time like swishing with mouthwash. Continue for a few minutes, then relax and repeat.
Jaw Release – Lips, Jaw and Cheeks
This exercise stretches the muscles around your lips, jaw and cheeks to release tension. This release can quickly make you look more youthful, rested and relaxed.
Sit, breathing properly and move your jaw as if you are eating with your mouth closed. After several seconds, open your mouth as wide as possible with your tongue placed on your lower teeth. Hold for a few seconds, relax and repeat.
How long until you see results?
A study by Northwestern University found that doing a 30-minute daily or alternate-day facial yoga routine for over 20 weeks could make a middle-aged woman look up to three years younger. Dedication, commitment and consistency are the keys to success.beautystyle