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Facial Exercise and the Benefits You Can Get

Facial exercise or facial yoga is increasingly being promoted because of the various benefits it offers. Then, is this true? What can be obtained from facial exercises and how to do it? In this article, we will discuss about this unique activity and movements that you can practice at home yourself.

Facial Exercises: Are There Any Benefits?

Facial exercise is now booming. This can be seen from the large number of media to famous people who claim the benefits of these activities. However, when referring to the literature or health journals, there are still few who even justify the claims of facial exercise.

Launching from the Healthline page, the head of plastic surgery and reconstructive surgery at Boston University School of Medicine believes that facial exercises do not provide any benefits.

Even so, there are still studies that support the good effects of facial exercises. The vice chair and lecturer in dermatology at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine, for example. His research shows promising results of facial exercises. The same thing is also shown by the publication of JAMA Dermatology as the first study to examine facial exercises.

The study was conducted on 27 women with an age range of 40 to 65 years. They were assigned to do facial exercises for 30 minutes. These exercises consist of toning, stretching, and lifting the cheek muscles and the muscles around the mouth and eyes.

The results of the study found 16 women who completed the 20-week program. The study also concluded that the 16 women managed to get a face three years younger.

However, dermatologists also say that this achievement can only be obtained by those who have high motivation and want to consistently do facial exercises for a long time. The exercise mentioned also takes 20-30 minutes per day for 6-7 days per week. The results are only visible when entering the third or fourth week.

Pros and Cons of Facial Exercise


Counter: Although claims about the benefits of facial exercise have emerged, some experts argue that there are any benefits to facial yoga. A professor of dermatology at Harvard Medical School says that the many claims appear dubious.

Previous plastic surgeons also said that the facial skin, especially the cheeks, cannot be made thin like the arms and stomach. For him, following the facial exercises so that they are tapered will not produce the desired results. This is clearly different from losing the whole body weight through diet and physical training.

The reason is because we cannot determine which part of the body we burn calories. He also explained that facial exercise would actually have unwanted effects, such as looking older on the face.

The skin is also elastic and has little resistance so that the pulled facial muscles stretch rather than strengthen. According to him, it is difficult to do facial exercises to stay young because people who do it will get a wrinkled face if their facial muscles do excessive activity.

Pro: Although many opinions say there are side effects or no benefits of facial exercises, some others actually support facial exercises and the benefits they offer. A study from JAMA Dermatology also states that facial exercises can be used as 1) how to stay young and 2) makes cheeks fuller and firmer.

A gymnastics instructor explained that the benefits of facial yoga which makes the skin plump and toned are obtained from the process of stimulating blood flow in the face. Blood that flows smoothly will spur production collagen as protein in the skin that makes it strong and firm. Apart from that, collagen also inhibits the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.

Although previously denied, the professor of dermatology at Harvard Medical School said that facial exercises are “possible” provide good benefits for the face. Some of these benefits are 3) thick scar reduction. This is because stretching and moving facial muscles can loosen and fade scars.

He also explained that facial exercises can 4) improve facial muscle tone and 5) aid in fat reduction based on the effects of gravity or redistribution on the face. The trained facial muscles will help fat not accumulate by relying on the pull of gravity.

Even so, he said that these benefits were only theoretical. If it turns out to be true, the changes will look very subtle and less visible than by using such cosmetic injections dermal filler or fillers. In the end, he concluded facial exercise as a harmless activity to try, even if there were a few negative sides.

Facial Exercise Steps


There are many ways to do facial exercises that offer benefits to tighten and make skin look younger. You can answer your curiosity about the effects of facial exercises by following some exercises from Fumiko Takatsu, founder of the Face Yoga Method. He taught facial exercises for different parts of the face and in different ways.

His facial exercises can be done by beginners. Ideally, you need to do facial exercises before bed and after waking up every day. There are four to five movements per session with a time of 30 seconds per movement.

Beginners can start by tightening the larger muscles, such as those in the neck and forehead area. After that it can continue to the more delicate areas such as the eyes and mouth. With each movement, keep your posture straight, your chest out, and don’t hold your breath.

1. Heating

The first step is simple movements to smooth the entire blood circulation.

  • Drop your jaw as if it were yawning. Feel the sensation on the cheek.
  • Move your gaze from perpendicular to the top or the ceiling without moving your forehead muscles.
  • Hold for 10 seconds, do it without holding your breath.
  • Repeat twice for a total of 30 seconds.

2. Neck

This movement releases tension and tightens the neck area. The jaw and neck are connected by muscles platisma. In other words, this stretch can also strengthen the jaw.

  • Relaxing the shoulders, move the chin to one side and slightly upward about 45 degrees.
  • Lean your lips in a kissing motion.
  • Hold for 10 seconds and continue breathing.
  • Change directions and repeat the movement twice for each side so that you have a total of 30 seconds for each side.

3. The forehead

Takatsu calls this movement an instant energy giver. Because, this movement doubles the meditation while feeling the energy from around. Hence, this movement is also good for morning yoga rituals.

  • Place both fingers on the forehead while forming an inverted V sign, raise it slightly upward.
  • Keeping your shoulders relaxed and chin slightly elevated, inhale and exhale for 10 seconds.
  • Move the palms that were open from the side to close the eyes and feel the sensation.
  • Repeat this twice for a total of 30 seconds.

4. Eyes

For subtle eye exercises, this stage separates the movement of the lower eyelid and forehead muscles. The key is to hold back so you don’t frown.

  • Make the finger of one hand forming a letter C. Place the index finger over the eyebrow around the eye bone.
  • Place your thumb next to your nose, just above the nostril. Press your finger downwards then sideways.
  • Keep your shoulders relaxed, open your eyes as wide as you can. Hold for up to 5 seconds while pressing the index finger to the eyebrows and make sure the eyebrows and forehead do not move.
  • Squint five times before finally closing your eyes and relaxing for a few seconds.
  • Repeat this movement twice for a total of 30 seconds. Also repeat with the other hand.

5. The Mouth

As you get older, collagen will decrease and this will have an impact on thinning lips. The following movements work as stimulation so that the lips are full.

  • Put both index fingers on the ends of the lips.
  • Make a smiling motion so that the entire front row of teeth is visible. Make sure that the two sides of the mouth are level.
  • Bend your tongue a little. Take 5 seconds to slowly move it right or left. Repeat for five seconds to the other side.
  • Repeat two more times for a total of 30 seconds. Remember to keep breathing.

Facial exercises are quite similar to yoga, where muscles are tightened and blood is flowed. The movements also include meditation and breath control. Even though the facial exercises above are a bit difficult for beginners to do, you need to work hard and consistently to get the promised results.

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Author: Arofah Hafizh A.


Barta K. 2019. Facial Exercises: Are They Bogus?

Cleveland Clinic. 2018. Can Doing Facial Exercises Help You Look Younger?

Harvard Health Publishing. 2019. Does your face need a workout?

Gruber B. 2020. These Science-Approved Facial Exercises May Make You Look Years Younger.

Schneider J. 2020. Face Yoga Can Tone Your Muscles For Firm, Radiant Skin: Benefits + 5 Poses To Try.