Your face contains over 60 different muscles. Just like your abs, pecs, arms, and legs, you need to exercise these muscles for supple and well-toned skin. Facial exercises stimulate muscle growth, which straightens up the muscles beneath your dermis and keeps them from sagging.
What science says about facial yoga
You might be wondering about how facial exercises, also called facial yoga, can rejuvenate wrinkles on your face. A study published last year in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) Dermatology, backs up its benefits.
The researchers from Northwestern University conducted a clinical trial with sixteen women who did facial yoga. These women were aged 45 to 60 years old. They followed the instructions for facial exercises, which they did for 30 minutes every day, for the first eight weeks, and 30 minutes every other day for the remaining twelve. Using a standardized facial ageing scale, the researchers rated a certain set of features in the participants’ faces, before, during, and after the trial.
What the researchers found out was that facial yoga seemed to have cut three years in the participants’ facial appearance. While the study wasn’t designed to identify the factors behind this improvement, the researchers hypothesized that the exercises helped build muscle in the face, decreasing the creases and sagging associated with ageing. If twenty weeks of consistent facial yoga can cut three years in your appearance, what more can 52 weeks or a lifetime of facial yoga do?
How to do facial yoga to tone your face line and cheeks
Before you engage in facial yoga, the number one rule you should remember is to be consistent in doing the exercise. Don’t be remiss in your routine, especially with the first eight weeks. The following routine outlines how to do facial yoga, and normally lasts around thirty minutes.
Routine Set 1: Cheek exercises
Smile with your lips closed. Then, open your mouth and say “O” as in “Oscar.” Move your lower jaw forward while you curl your upper lips over your upper teeth. Smile again, but this time, with your teeth visible. You should feel your cheek muscles stretching as you do this routine.
Then, press the top part of your cheeks just below your eyes using your index fingers. Relax, then smile again with your mouth closed. Repeat this routine sixteen times. On the sixteenth time, smile as wide as you can, feeling your cheek muscles lifting as if touching the edges of your eyes. Keep your face in that stretched position for 20 seconds.
Routine Set 2: Chin and lower jaw exercises
This next routine aims to combat sagging around your chin and jaw areas. Smile with your lips closed and open your mouth to say “Ahh” as in “Awesome.” This time, you lower your jaw inward and curl your lower lips to cover the set of teeth on your mouth’s bottom.
You will feel that your upper lips tighten over your upper set of teeth, and keep that position for five seconds. Then, tilt your head backward as you stretch your lower jaw forward and lift it slowly, closing your mouth. Repeat the open and closing motions of your mouth sixteen times. When you reach the sixteenth count, stick your chin up towards the ceiling and keep your head tilting backward. Hold this position for 30 seconds.
Routine Set 3: Forehead and eyebrows exercises
After you finish the chin routine, do the next set involving your forehead and eyebrows. Similar to the previous routine sets, start with a smile. As you smile, press your three, middle fingers onto the lower corners of your eyebrows and pull it upward, feeling your eyes forcibly open. Keep the smiling act before frowning your mouth. Go back to smiling position, make a deep breath, and hold. Breathe out, relax, and start from the beginning again, for eight more times.
Thus, with facial exercises, you can achieve a youthful look. No injections, no surgery, no heat, and no thousands of dollars, all you need are stretches and rubs, and lots of patience and consistency.
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