Facial Yoga

What Is Facial Yoga And Does It Work?

Around the world, people are looking for ways to relieve stress and restlessness in their daily lives. Practicing yoga is one of many ways you can achieve this. Yoga comes with many health benefits, including increased flexibility, stress relief, and improved sleep. With no shortage of yoga styles to choose from, another form has recently seen a rise in popularity: face yoga.

Lately, social media platforms such as TikTok have been popularizing facial yoga as the latest solution in anti-aging. Some even claim it can change the shape of your face. While there’s no evidence showing it can completely change your face shape, it does have quite a few anti-aging effects and can help you relieve tension in your facial muscles. So what are the real benefits of this new trend?

What Is Face Yoga?

The face is made up of three different layers that sit on top of your bones. The outermost layer is the skin, with two layers of fat underneath, subcutaneous and deep fat. These pockets of fat fit together and give your face shape and fullness. Under this fat are the facial muscles. As a person ages, gravity pulls the skin downward, which creates sagging. Simultaneously, the face loses a layer of fat that creates plumpness in younger people, creating a hollower look. The skin and bones also begin to thin. This is where face yoga comes in.

Face yoga describes a series of facial exercises to tone and stretch the muscles in your face. It targets the individual muscles, either through certain facial movements or massaging your face with your hands and fingers. The idea behind doing this is to keep your face looking toned and young, lifting sagging or drooping skin.

It is important to understand this form of exercise is not traditional yoga. The word “yoga” in this new trend just means you are moving the muscles on your face into certain positions, like you do in yoga. It provides a natural, alternative option to fillers and other plastic surgery options.

The Benefits Of Face Yoga

The potential health benefits are more than just giving you a facelift. Face yoga can also help with:

Facial expression and mental health. Some studies have shown that older people who do 30 minutes of facial yoga at least two times a week may see improvements in their mental health, facial expressions, and the power of their tongue muscles. However, this was also combined with abdominal breathing and other rhythmic facial movement.

Facial Appearance. Others who have performed facial yoga saw improvements in their facial appearance, mostly in fullness around their mid and lower facial structures. It has also helped with smoothing wrinkles and fine lines, lifting the skin around the eyes, and preventing under-eye bags. Facial exercises can also increase circulation and blood flow to the skin, which makes your skin glow.

Improving facial muscle tone. Building up facial muscles may keep the fat in your face in place and prevent it from being pulled down by gravity. Like yoga, it can also decrease any straining, pain and tension in overworked muscles while improving their strength.

Improving the appearance of scars. Facial yoga exercises can help reduce the appearance of thick scars. By exercising or massaging your face, your skin stretches and helps the thick scar become pliable and thinner.

Does Face Yoga Work?

The best way to think of face yoga is as a gentle form of strength training for your face and neck muscles. The more you repeat certain exercises, the more you may notice the muscles and skin slightly change for the better.

This requires commitment, though. It is hard to know how long the effects of facial yoga last, so committing to a routine can continue to strengthen those muscles, just like regular exercise. Most people also hold tension in their faces, whether through facial expressions or too much time in front of a screen. Including this routine as part of your other anti-aging practices can help improve the look and feel of your face.

7 Face Yoga Exercises To Try

For each exercise, you should only work to your comfort level. You may feel warm, but you shouldn’t experience pain or discomfort.

It is important to always start with clean hands and a clean face. Some experts recommend using an oil, serum, or cleansing balm so your fingers glide easily over the skin without being too slippery. Using these, along with facial yoga movements, can help the products penetrate your skin better.

Tension Relief

Stimulating this acupressure point helps reduce eye strain. This is great for calming down during the day or before you fall asleep.

Press into the inner corner of your eyes for 30 seconds. Then, circle gently in one direction for 30 seconds. Repeat in the opposite direction.

Eye Circles

This exercise boosts oxygen circulation to the skin around your eyes and alleviates puffiness. Be gentle as you do this exercise.

Place your ring fingers on the inside of your eyebrows. Gently tap your fingers toward the outside of your eyebrows, then press into your temples for a few seconds. Continue to tap above your cheekbones to the inner corner of your eyes.

Brow Smoother

This facial exercise relaxes the large muscle at the front of your forehead. Often, this muscle is overused, which can cause stiffness, rigidity, and stress.

To do this exercise, place your fingertips at the center of your forehead, facing inwards. Gently press your fingertips into your forehead as you move your fingers toward your temples. Release your fingers, then continue for another 30 seconds.

Neck Massage

Neck massages are great for boosting lymphatic drainage and alleviating neck tension. It also helps correct sagging skin around your jaw and neck.

To do this facial exercise, tilt your head back slightly and place your fingers at the top of your neck. Apply gentle pressure as you glide your fingers down to your collarbone. Press into your collarbone for a few seconds before releasing your fingers. Continue this exercise for 30 seconds.

Jaw Unlocker

This particular exercise engages the muscles in your jaw and neck.

While seated, make a fist with your left hand and place it on the outside of your jaw with your thumb facing down. Turn your head toward your fist, feeling the stretch on the side of your neck. It is important you do not allow your hand to move. Then, press your jaw toward your hand for a few seconds and gently release. Repeat on the opposite side.

Lion’s Breath

Also known as Lion’s pose, this is a yoga-based breathing exercise that reduces stress and relaxes your face muscles.

From a seated position, lean forward to brace your hands on your knees or the floor. Inhale deeply through your nose, then open your mouth wide, stick out your tongue, and stretch your tongue toward your chin. Forcibly exhale your breath while making a ‘ha’ sound, then relax and breathe normally.

You can repeat this exercise up to 7 times, followed by deep breathing for 1 to 3 minutes.

The Cheek Lifter

This exercise is great for lifting the skin around your cheeks to give you a more youthful look.

To do this exercise, open your mouth and form an O. Position your upper lip over your teeth and smile to lift the cheek muscles up. Lightly place your index fingers on top of those muscles, directly under the eyes. Release the cheek muscles to lower them. Then, smile again, thinking about pushing the muscles up toward your eyes. Repeat by lowering and lifting the cheeks 10 times.

Face yoga can be a great way to introduce more self-care into your routine, but it shouldn’t be the only thing you do. An Optimal You offers a variety of anti-aging and wellness services for all our clients in Murrieta and Temecula. We can work with you to create a customized plan so you can achieve your optimal self. Make an appointment with our office today to get started on your wellness journey!

Frequently Asked Questions

  • How long does it take to see results with face yoga?

This all depends on your age, lifestyle, and habits. Unlike other parts of the body, changes to your face are more subtle and appear slowly over time. This means some may see results as soon as two weeks while others take much longer to see the effects. What is important to keep in mind is that it takes consistent practice to see any results. By doing these exercises every day and keeping track of your progress, you can more effectively see the results take shape!

  • Does practicing face yoga cause wrinkles?

Some people may think that face exercises could lead to wrinkles, but that is not the case. It is important to make sure that you are moving the muscles correctly, so practice in front of the mirror. Doing this will ensure the exercises actually help prevent and reduce wrinkles.

  • How regularly should I do face yoga?

Experts suggest at least 10 minutes every day, 5 to 6 days a week. The important thing to remember is consistency, though, so try to schedule in a set time to do this practice!

Posted In - Anxiety, Health Tips, Mental Health