What is Face Yoga?
Face yoga is a completely natural alternative to anti-aging remedies. By practicing a series of facial exercises you can learn to tone the muscles beneath the facial skin and increase facial circulation and blood flow which results in a more youthful and radiant complexion.
I discovered face yoga through a friend who was using it to improve her jawline. The idea intrigued me, but I wondered how much of a difference it could make. Before I committed to a program, I decided to find out who else was doing it. Interestingly, I found that those of us who work out our faces are in good company! Here are a just few names you might recognize:
- Meghan Markle
- Jennifer Aniston
- Gwenyth Paltrow
- Gisele Bundchen
- Kate Moss
- Cindy Crawford
- Natalie Portman
Most of us have heard of yoga, many of us have gone to yoga. However, in the classes I’ve been to the instructor has never addressed the tension held in the face. That’s unfortunate because your face has at least forty-two muscles! These muscles need to be kept in shape just like the rest of your body!
If you are anything like me, you are looking for anti-aging tips that do not involve Botox or surgery. Enter Facial Yoga! Perhaps you don’t mind a little botox but the price keeps you from getting it as often as you like? Look into this practice. Face yoga exercises can help in toning your face without injections.
Facelift vs. Face Yoga
Some say face yoga exercises is like an instant facelift. While I won’t use the word “instant,” I will agree that it has the ability to change the way your face looks over time with consistent practice. Just like with any other exercise, it only works if you do it on a regular basis.
We probably won’t need to spend too much time on the idea of choosing something natural like face yoga over an invasive facelift surgery. Since you are here, I’m guessing you have at least some desire to do things naturally.
Briefly, the risks of plastic surgery are facial nerve injury, bleeding, infection, lasting numbness, fluid build-up, and of course, the risks that come with anesthesia. The recovery time can also take weeks.
You may not feel this way, but I avoid surgery if at all possible. Actually, most of the reason I practice a healthy lifestyle involves avoiding the doctor’s office. Apologies to all the wonderful doctors and nurses out there, I appreciate what you do to keep people alive.
For me, choosing surgery is out of the question. I have been on the receiving end of doctor error far too many times in my life to risk injury for my looks. Plus with this method – no recovery time.
Face yoga can start to sculpt your face in about the same amount of time it takes to recover from a facelift!
Speaking of a facelift, a few plastic surgeons say doing face yoga will cause wrinkles because of the movements of your face. Those who believe in the method counter that doing the exercises and practicing consistently conditions your face to stay relaxed and therefore allowing the smoothing of those stress and concentration lines.
You can see before and after pictures here and decide for yourself whether or not you think it works.
Facial exercises for specific issues
The complete 6 Week Face Toning Bootcamp goes through all the different sections of the face. Not only does the instructor work through each individual yoga routine, but she also shares self-care suggestions and assignments. The daily lessons are outlined in a downloadable/printable blueprint, which I put on a clipboard and hung on my wall near my computer as a reminder to do them.
Sometimes I used the “mirror” method provided in the Bootcamp but most of the time I turned it off. The pressure points workshops that are included helped me to relax my face, which I found is where I hold a lot of tension. Read through the testimonials at the bottom of this page to learn more about other people’s experiences.
Targeting Facial Muscles
Decrease the appearance of crow’s feet, reduce puffiness, minimize bags under the eyes, and bloodshot eyes using the eye jumpstart. The program has a calendar with routines to follow, skincare tips, and guided meditation. Many people start with the eyes because you know what they say, “the eyes are the window to the soul.”
Several of my friends get botox injections in their forehead as many of us hold our tension there or create lines from where we furrow our eyebrows. Using the forehead poses and exercises will help lift the eyebrows and cause your face to look more relaxed. Keeping the forehead muscles relaxed helps to reduce the wrinkles that appear there over time.
Some women notice sagging on the face and “jowl” area, using the targeted exercises, you can lift your cheek muscles and diminish those smile lines.
Plump lips and correct a sagging smile. One side of my family has a natural smile line that turns down at the corners of the mouth. Because of this, we tend to look unhappy unless we are consciously smiling. Using the mouth and cheek jumpstart can improve the natural resting face so that it doesn’t look like you are frowning.
Neck and jawline exercises will help if you have a double chin or sagging neck. The poses also tighten up and tone your entire neckline. Many women start by working on this area.
Consider the exercises to be part of your skincare routine, although you can do them anytime. Many women do the exercises while they are driving, in the shower, or watching TV.
Fumiko Takatsu’s method
I use the Face Yoga Method by Fumiko Takatsu, who says that by using her exercises you can achieve:
- Higher, more defined cheeks
- Plumper, more defined lips
- Bigger, wide-opened eyes
- Less droopy eyelids
- More symmetrical face
- A bigger, more natural smile
- Reduced forehead lines
- Uplifted corners of the mouth
- Reduced lines along the sides of the mouth (nasolabial fold)
- Reduced double chin
- More defined face line
- Reduced crow’s feet
- Reducedpuffiness under the eyes
- Reduceddark circles under the eyes
- Reduced puffiness on the face
- More even skin tone
- Smoother skin
- Reducedfrown lines
- Reduced lines on the entire face
- Firmer, more youthful-looking face
- More confidence in your smile and face!
How were these Facial Exercises created?
So how did Fumiko discover that our faces deserved their own set of exercises? Like many of us, she had a traumatic experience that caused her to look for a solution to a problem she was having. Here’s her story in her own words:
Fumiko was an American-educated academic living in Japan, teaching English. At 36, she still looked pretty great and was convinced her youthfulness was invincible. Then, one day while vacationing in California, Fumiko was riding in the passenger’s seat of a car and they got hit at high speed. The impact caused her hip, shoulder, and head to be thrown off-kilter. She is lucky to be alive now.
Fumiko remember’s experiencing the shock of a lifetime when she got her driver’s license photo taken after the crash and observed her asymmetrical face. It was difficult to look at herself. She panicked. She started to buy expensive facial creams, lotions, and treatments, but none were helping her look young again.
Then one day, she was standing in front of the mirror and realized that if she exercised her body muscles, she should be able to do the same for her face. That’s when the Face Yoga Method was born. After practicing facial exercises for several weeks, people started commenting on her results. They said she looked younger and more aligned and wanted to learn how to tone their faces too.
When practiced properly, following Fumiko Takatsu’s instruction, Face Yoga cannot cause wrinkles, and on the contrary, can actually reduce wrinkles. All of her programs provide a detailed step-by-step photo and/or video routines. It’s always recommended to practice slowly and gently and in front of a mirror to be sure your actions mimic the provided steps. (In the Bootcamp course you can use the camera on your computer to see yourself doing the exercises while you watch the workout videos!)
My Personal Experience
The hardest part about ANY exercise program is being consistent. I’ve started the 6-week bootcamp over from the beginning twice. Now I’m skipping around, but my favorite section is the lips!
I started out doing these exercises in the morning during my getting ready routine, and sometimes I still do them then. Especially if I skipped them the night before. As part of my morning routine, I would go to the day’s lesson on my smartphone and prop it up on the bathroom counter.
For me, the best time to do face exercises was during the time I was at night after dinner but before bed. If I was sitting down to do some writing on my laptop, I’d just do the poses before I got started. After you learn the exercises, you can even do them while you’re watching tv, doing the dishes, or taking a walk.
So that’s what works for me; it is part of my daily routine now. I consider it resistance training for my face muscles. I’ll add my photos to this post when I get to the end of the six weeks!