When you exercise your mouth, you can potentially fight some of the effects of aging. Mouth exercises can work the muscles around the mouth, creating a stronger jawline and cheeks and reducing the appearance of sagging skin. All you need is a mirror and a few minutes a day.
Benefits of Jawline Exercises
As you age, your face begins to change. Your skin begins to thin, and your muscles begin to lose tone. As this starts to happen, your skin may appear to be sagging or drooping. The sagging may make it look as though you have a double chin.
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But as with other muscles of your body, you can work the jaw muscles to help strengthen them. Strengthening the muscles around your mouth may help combat the effects of aging. For example, you may notice less pronounced sagging, and your jawline and cheeks may appear more toned.
In a small study published in JAMA Dermatology in March 2018, researchers assessed the effects of facial exercises on signs of aging. They found that 30 minutes of facial exercise for 20 weeks daily or on alternating days produced modest improvements in facial appearance. However, the researchers indicate that their study is a preliminary study, so more and larger studies are needed to confirm the results.
Harvard Health Publishing also says that facial exercises could decrease some of the signs of aging. Similar to the JAMA Dermatology study, Harvard says that further studies are needed to confirm the potential benefits.
The first benefit, according to Harvard Health Publishing, is that facial exercises may improve muscle tone and help lift the face naturally. The second possible benefit is that facial exercises may help reduce the appearance of scars. The reason for this is that the exercise may help loosen scar tissue, which can soften the scar's appearance.
In another small study published in Aesthetic Surgery Journal in April 2018, researchers examined the effects of using a PAO device for facial exercises. A PAO device is a small piece of exercise equipment which allows you to better target your facial muscles. The researchers concluded that the participants who used the device for 30 seconds a day for eight weeks showed increased facial muscle thickness, which helped fight the effects of aging.
How to Exercise Your Mouth
Facial exercises that work the muscles around your mouth should be done either once a day or once every other day for best results. As with other exercises, consistency is key to your success.
When exercising your facial muscles, do the exercises in front of a mirror so you can easily perfect your form.
Move 1: Cheek Exercise
For stronger, younger-looking cheeks, you can start by trying the following cheek exercise:
- Smile as hard as possible while keeping your mouth closed and the corners of your mouth contracted as you hold your smile.
- As you are smiling, wrinkle your nose. As you do this, your cheek muscles should move up.
- Hold the smile and wrinkled nose for five seconds and then relax.
- Repeat 10 times.
Move 2: Chin Lifting Exercise
This chin lifting exercise may help in your efforts to firm up the skin underneath your chin:
- Place the tips of your thumbs under your chin.
- Press your jawbone against your thumbs.
- Make small circles with your jaw using your thumbs.
- As you make circles, press the tip of your tongue on the roof of your mouth.
- Release the pressure from your thumbs.
- Repeat 10 times.
Move 3: Jaw and Chin Toner
Finally, another exercise you can do that may help tone your jaw and neck comes from Northwestern University:
- Open your mouth and make an "ah" sound.
- Fold your lower lip and corners of your mouth in as much as possible and hold.
- With your lower lip folded in, jut your lower jaw out as far as possible.
- Moving only your lower jaw, scoop up very slowly, pretending that you are lifting a heavy object with just your lower jaw.
- Lift your jaw about an inch each time and tilt your head back slightly with each repetition.
- Repeat 10 times.
- On the final repetition, extend your chin toward the ceiling and hold for 20 seconds.
Read more: Can You Actually Slim Down Your Face?