✅ Fact Checked
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Face yoga is all the craze. Apparently, it’s cheap, non-toxic, non-invasive, and shockingly effective. Popular celebrities including Meghan Markle and Madonna turn to face yoga instead of a facelift and swear by its skin-boosting and muscle-toning properties.
Is face yoga as good as it sounds?
Read on to learn:
- the benefits of face yoga, according to face yoga experts
- if face yoga really tones your face, according to research
- potential side effects of face yoga.
1/4 What is face yoga?
Face yoga is exactly what it sounds like – yoga to tone your face. Face yoga is considered a natural and low-cost method to improve your facial appearance by reducing wrinkles, boosting collagen production, and giving you that radiant glowing complexion.
The facial yoga technique targets your face, neck, and shoulders with a variety of exercises to strengthen the facial muscles and massage to boost the lymphatic flow.
However, face yoga isn’t only about physical training. There’s a lot of work with increasing your self-awareness and paying attention to your facial expressions. For example, Marie-Veronique Nadeau, the author of The Yoga Facelift, includes the spiritual aspect as an important part of face yoga.
As Marie-Veronique puts it: “Yoga exercises can create change from within by bringing the mind and body into harmony. […] When we become aware of what we’re doing with our faces, as we are aware of what we’re doing with our bodies, we find that with conscious effort, diligent application, and some time, we can effect [sic.] change.“
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2/4 Does facial yoga really tone your face?
The followers of the face yoga method swear by its toning benefits. Some go as far as saying that face yoga may improve the structural appearance of your face, such as nose shape, for example.
According to Marie-Veronique Nadeau, a founder of Yoga Facelift, over time our muscles lengthen as the gravity pulls us downward. This results in sagging cheeks and drooping eyes. We can counteract the gravity and reduce signs of aging by shortening and tightening our muscles through exercise.
Marie-Veronique also states that face yoga is much more effective in the long term compared to a surgical facelift, the effects of which are not only temporary but also very unnatural.
Research on face yoga and its toning benefits isn’t conclusive.
A 2018 study has offered some promising evidence and brought facial yoga back into the spotlight. After 20 weeks of facial yoga, participants showed an improved upper and lower cheek fullness as well as were highly satisfied with results, noticing a significant improvement in 18 of 20 facial features.
That said, a 2014 review of studies on facial exercises didn’t reach any conclusive results regarding face yoga and its rejuvenating properties. All previous studies, though positive, were subjective and of low quality.
3/4 Can yoga improve face?
Traditional relaxation yoga poses such as Savasana, Seated Forward Fold, or Easy Pose can help you improve your facial appearance by releasing tension in your jaw and forehead.
Annelise Hagen, a yoga teacher and author of The Yoga Face calls the following yoga poses Face Lifters since they “one the muscles under the skin of the face and throat through specific muscular isolation in the facial area.”
The Face Lifters include:
- Fish pose
- Lion Face
Inversions are also a great group of poses to practice for facial rejuvenation, according to Annelise. Such poses as Plough, Shoulderstand, Legs Up The Wall, and Downward-Facing Dog plump the skin and fill in sags and bags.
However, if you’re looking for more youthful and radiant skin, you might want to focus on a balanced lifestyle above everything else. Getting enough sleep, reducing stress, and eating healthy is as important as strengthening your muscles.
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4/4 Is face yoga harmful?
Dermatologists and doctors have varied opinions about face yoga.
Some experts agree that it’s hard to tell whether facial massage and exercises do anything in the first place. But if you’re looking for a non-invasive and cheap “facelifting” option from the comfort of your home, and want to give face yoga a shot, there’s likely no harm involved.
Others believe that face yoga can potentially backfire. Our hands carry a lot of oil and bacteria that can aggravate acne, clog pores and cause breakouts.
Can face yoga make your face worse?
Some experts warn that face yoga can actually deepen wrinkles and make you look older. According to Dr. Spiegel, not only are you repeating the same movements again and again, which will worsen the wrinkles, but also you’re pulling on your skin and stretching it.
It’s hard to say how much facial yoga is too much. It might be possible that in those studies that showed positive improvements after doing facial yoga, participants didn’t perform the exercises for the time long enough for their wrinkles to get worse.
Instead of doing face yoga, try practicing a relaxing face throughout your day. This will not only prevent new wrinkles but also save you the money you’d spend on a face workout.