- Exercise & Fitness»
Yoga: A Beautiful Face Enhancer
Part 1: The beginning
A few years ago, I noticed that my jaw line was sagging a little, just a little. I was also getting deep lines from my nose to the sides of my mouth (the Nasolabial Fold). I laugh a lot and find life fun but I didn't like it when my face began to crease.. What really annoyed me was my upper lip looked thinner and droopier, and my nose appeared to get bigger while my eyes got smaller.
As we age, our habitual expressions cause wrinkles and tissue loss. Everyday gravity causes drag on our faces until what used to be up, has come down. I think some faces are beautiful as they age, but mine wasn't one of them. Mine was losing most of it's beauty, even though my skin was almost wrinkle free and well taken care of.
So what could I do? I had a couple of choices. I might look into a facial peel or even surgery. There was the chance that some new "miracle" cream might help me solve some of the problems but I have little faith in the anti aging market.
Then I remembered a book my mother had when I was a teenager. Written by Santa Maria Runge, it was called Face Lifting by Exercise (for women and men). I knew that the muscles on the face were different than the ones on the body. They are mostly connected to bone and the ones on your face are finer and more deftly connected to each other and the skin. The reason most of the face sags with age is because the muscles loses tone! So, knowing how exercise can change the shape of your body, I jumped into action.
Being that I was a Yoga instructor and self acknowledge health nut, I finally felt I was joining the right party. During my research both online and through books, I found some people worried about creating more wrinkles through this kind of treatment. I looked at the faces of people who did the exercises and found they had less wrinkles and tighter faces with high cheeks and less chins. Clearly if the correct care was taken, it would be more beneficial than otherwise.
I added a facial session to my personal yoga routine. I choose exercises that felt the most effective from many different sources. Within a couple weeks, people were mentioning how much younger I was looking and asking me what I was doing. I didn't tell them. It was early days and I wanted to see how this would hold up long term.
Things I discovered.
- It does hold up over time. If you slack off for a couple of weeks, you begin to see the signs. Usually I'll notice my neck will begin to go "turkey" on me. Yuck.
- If you did the same exercises everyday, in the same way, your face could become oddly muscular in some areas and not so much in others.
- Mix up your techniques. Focus on the same areas but in different ways. Have two sets and switch them out every other day.
- If the routine took over 15 minutes, it was too long and you'll lose your motivation.
- What order you do them in matters.
- You can do them in the car on the way to work, while you're stopped at a red light. Do try to block the vision of the people in the one next to you or they'll stare at the funny lady making faces.
- You can make your eye's wider, nose look smaller and your lips fuller...oh yes you can!
- Your skin will glow because of the increased circulation.
- Men can do very effective face sculpting with the same exercises.
Sound quality is off at first but it gets better. The Vitalitist
When I was first researching, I came across the site below. He has one of the best eye exercises out there and he doesn't forget the scalp, which many people do.
- Facial Exercise
A program of facial exercises for toning up the muscles of the face and neck. Also advice on skin and hair care.
Here's some videos to get you started. I enjoy The Vitalitist because she teaches the way I do, beginning with a meditation. I don't necessarily believe the "Marilyn" is particularly effective and there are a few other exercises for the mouth that are better.
Patricia Gororway's exercises are also very effective. Her sound quality blips out for a bit as well but recovers fast.
On The Cheap Tip has a great nasolabial fold and eyebrow lift exercise. There is altogether too much pursing of the lips in facial yoga. This can aggravate the lines around the upper lip, making them even deeper. He does the opposite and has you curl the lips out and back.
In books, Carol Maggio is an expert in the field. I admire her techniques very much and get the most use out her program.
I also still rummage through Santa Maria's book from my mother and pull out something new every time.
Wishing you peace, happiness and beauty with many adventures of new discovery.