If your face is drooping and starting to show more lines than a piece of notebook paper, it may be time to try a new facial workout. As you age, your muscles and skin begin to lose elasticity. In the face and neck, this leads to wrinkles or sagging skin. While lotions, potions and even occasional plastic surgery can help, they can also cause skin irritation and scarring. Just like you exercise to tone your thighs or arms, certain stretching exercises target the muscles in the neck and face and help increase elasticity and minimize those fine lines and wrinkles. While many of the exercises may look like the funny faces you make to small children, facial yoga developer Annelise Hagen says there are specific techniques used to target specific muscles.
Perform the "surprise me" pose. Open your eyes as wide as possible. You're looking to expose as much of the white in your eyes as possible. Hold this pose until your eyes begin to water. This targets the muscles around your eyes and your forehead.
Target the muscles in your cheeks. Inhale deeply through your mouth. Before exhaling, fill your cheeks with air like a large bullfrog. Hold for a few seconds and release the breath.
Tilt your head back slightly so you're looking toward the ceiling. Press your tongue to the roof of your mouth. Smile and swallow. Continue for 30 to 60 seconds. This targets the muscles in your neck and helps tighten the skin to reduce that baggy look.
Place the three middle fingers of each hand slightly under each eyebrow while resting the palm of your hands on your face. With your fingertips, push your eyebrows up slightly. Use your eyebrows to try to push down against your fingertips. Hold this pose for five seconds and relax. Repeat three more times, holding the pose for 10 seconds each for a total of 35 seconds.
- For best results, perform these exercises in the morning and again right before bed.
- Talk with your doctor before starting a new exercise program. This is especially true if you have any facial conditions that could be affected by these exercises.
Deborah Lundin is a professional writer with more than 20 years of experience in the medical field and as a small business owner. She studied medical science and sociology at Northern Illinois University. Her passions and interests include fitness, health, healthy eating, children and pets.