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It's not possible to stop wrinkles forever, but proponents of facial exercises say that regular workouts keep aging at bay. Facial exercises, or face yoga, aims to tone and tighten loose skin by working sets of specific muscles. These exercises target different parts of the face, including droopy eyelids, fine lines and sagging neck skin.
The Effectiveness of Facial Yoga
Facial yoga instructors believe that face exercises have a tightening effect on muscles and skin. Expert opinions vary. For example, plastic surgeon Dr. Kathryn Frew of the Juva Skin & Laser Center says that repeated muscle movements and facial expressions can make wrinkles worse. Plastic surgeon Dr. Elie Levine states that it's difficult to work specific muscles with face exercises. Medical director Dr. Gerald Ginsberg, however, thinks that the exercises can improve circulation, skin tone and complexion. He also says that by toning the platysma muscle in the neck, it might be possible to reverse the "turkey neck" look.
Eye Hollows and Droopy Eyelids
To help correct drooping brows and deep eye hollows, do an exercise Marie Claire calls "The Flirty Eyes." Put one index finger under each eye and point toward your nose. Stretch your top lip down over your teeth, then open your mouth slightly. Look up at the ceiling and flutter your eyelids for 30 seconds. To treat eye bags, crow's feet and droopy eyelids, do "The V." Start by placing both middle fingers at the inner corner of your eyebrows. Press your index fingers against the outer corner of your brows. Look up, then lift your eyelids into a squint. Repeat this motion six times.
Exercise for Dark Circles
Dark under eye circles and puffiness can make you look sleepy, but an exercise called "Circle the Eyes" may help. The exercise works by increasing blood circulation and relaxing the muscles around the eyes. Put both middle fingers at the outer edge of each eyebrow. Tap the skin around your eyes, starting from the top of your brows and then moving to the top of your cheekbones. Press gently on the inner corner of each eye. Repeat the motion in the opposite direction.
Jowl and Neck Exercises
To tighten your neck and jowl area, wrap your lips around your upper and lower teeth. Form a smile and hold it for 10 seconds. Repeat this 12 times. Alternatively, curl your tongue back in your mouth as far as possible and then hold your neck back. Hold the position for 10 seconds; then relax. Repeat 20 times. You can also do an exercise called "The Giraffe." Put your fingers at the bottom of your neck and gently pull the skin downward while tilting your head back. Bend your neck forward so your chin rests on your chest. Stick your lower lip out all the way and then hold your head back so your chin points at the ceiling. Hold the position for four long breaths.
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Melissa King began writing in 2001. She spent three years writing for her local newspaper, "The Colt," writing editorials, news stories, product reviews and entertainment pieces. She is also the owner and operator of Howbert Freelance Writing. King holds an Associate of Arts in communications from Tarrant County College.
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