By Cora Ciaramello
L.E., C.P.E., LMT Aesthetician
“Your face is going to freeze like that!”
Remember that warning from our moms? They would use the phrase to try and cajole us out of frowning, pouting or sneering at the veggies on our plates at dinner.
Oh, if only! If only our faces could have been frozen back in time when we had no laugh lines or crow’s feet.
Well, here’s a piece of interesting news: It may be possible to restore some of our youthful appearance by – of all things – making faces. Or in more scientific terms, by performing “muscle-resistant facial exercises,” or in simple English … ”facial yoga.”
Yes, facial yoga. Who knew?
According to a recent study at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine, Chicago, a group of women between the ages of 40 and 65 were trained to perform specific exercises during two separate training sessions.
The women then performed the exercises according to a specific routine over a period of 20 weeks. In a January 2018 report on the study published in JAMA Dermatology, a panel of dermatologists who were not associated with the study saw positive results when shown before and after photos of the middle-aged women.
The panel determined there had been an approximate three-year difference in the women’s faces, giving them a younger appearance, particularly in the cheek area. As for the women, they were more satisfied with their appearance following the 20-week study period than when they started the trial program.
And there you have it: facial yoga, yet another positive impact of the ancient practice of yoga. Indeed, anyone who does engage in yoga on a regular basis – or has even simply tried for a while – knows about its benefits to the body.
But as with any exercise regimen, a key to success is patience. The Northwestern study, after all, did take 20 weeks for some noticeable results. If you’re feeling a bit impatient, however – and aren’t we all? – we’ve got some good news: We have age-reversal solutions for you here at Changes Spa & Aesthetics, to supplement your facial yoga home care, and to provide faster results.
Our Elevate+ treatment, for example, will give your facial muscles a visible lift in just over an hour and keeps improving for several days. Elevate+ uses microcurrent, a low level of electricity that mirrors the body’s own natural electric currents. The currents trigger chemical reactions at a cellular level to enhance the production of natural collagen and elastin, provide circulatory benefits and re-educate the muscles of the face.
With this treatment, muscles are lifted, jaw-line is contoured, and wrinkles diminish, while alleviating dark circles, excess fluid and fine lines. The Elevate+ treatment includes a full facial, with microdermabrasion or peel.
For those who would like to give those 52 muscles in their face an ‘uplifting’ workout at home and give facial yoga a try, experts suggest the following “positions.” No mats or blocks required; just a mirror will do!
The Cheek Puff
Fill up both cheeks with air and shift it from one cheek to the other about five times. Release the air by forming a small ‘O’ with lips. Repeat several times.
Go ahead…act like a kid and stick out your tongue as far as it will go and hold the position for a minute. Repeat several times.
Look up and pucker up. Hold the position for a few seconds and repeat.
Open mouth by dropping jaw and form a small ‘O’ with lips. From the ‘O’ position, widen lips to a smile, repeating several times.
While pursing lips, form a smile. Then form a ‘fish face’ by sucking in cheeks. Repeat several times to firm up and tone lips and cheeks.
To diminish the appearance of ‘crow’s feet,’ open eyes wide in a surprised look.
Changes Spa & Aesthetics
420 Boulevard Suite 107
Mountain Lakes, New Jersey