As you age, it's normal for skin to wrinkle and lose tone and elasticity. The beauty industry commonly pushes creams, lotions and surgeries to address these issues, but facial exercises have been found to improve facial fullness and help the face look younger, according to a 2018 research letter published in JAMA Dermatology.
Facial exercises to firm a sagging face function by firming the underlying muscles to give the skin a more even appearance. They also increase circulation to the face and may trigger increased collagen production. Exercises for your facial muscles do not require special equipment, and you can perform most of them at home in your spare time.
Practice Sphinx Smile
Lift the corners of your mouth to smile. Avoid creasing the corners of your eyes by keeping your eyes neutral. Repeat this exercise three or four times. Yoga instructor Annelise Hagen, author of "The Yoga Face," recommends this exercise to prevent excessive wrinkles around the eyes and mouth.
Buddha Face Pose
Close your eyes and concentrate on an imaginary point between your eyebrows. Hagen suggests imagining a small disk of light that slowly expands as you relax the muscles of your face. This exercise trains you to be aware of what your facial muscles are doing and how to relax them if they become overly tight.
Surprise Me Exercise
Widen your eyes, but avoid wrinkling your forehead. Focus on a point in front of you for between five and 10 seconds. Repeat this exercise up to four times. Beverly Hills plastic surgeon Dr. Andre Aboolian notes in the Los Angeles Times that this exercise can tone the muscles of the forehead because those muscles are the easiest facial muscles to exercise.
Practice Puffy Cheeks
Puff out both of your cheeks and shift the air in your mouth from one cheek to the other. Continue the exercise until you feel you are out of breath. Repeat the exercise three times to help keep your cheeks firm.
Air Kisses Exercise
Pucker your lips, but keep your brow smooth as you blow air kisses four times. Place two fingers to your lips and blow air kisses again for three or four repetitions. Hagen says this exercise works to keep the lips strong.
Practice Lion Face
Inhale through your nose as you ball your hands into fists and flex the muscles of your face. Exhale through your mouth as you stick out your tongue, roll your eyes and open your hands. Repeat three times. Hagan suggests this exercise for stretching and relieving tension in the muscles of your face.
Fish Face Pose
Smile while pursing your lips, then suck the inside of your cheeks into the gap between the sides of your teeth to create a fish face. Perform this exercise five times to firm and tone your lips and cheeks, suggests Hagen.
Keep in mind that while your face workout can help firm up underlying muscles of the face, you'll need to add cardiovascular exercise with your face yoga and toning exercise to lose weight in the face, if needed.