Doing facial yoga 30 minutes a day for a few months will help you look approximately three years younger, according to dermatologists, as previously reported by the Independent.
Facial yoga has been a popular anti-aging treatment since Annelise Hagen, a yoga teacher from New York, developed the practice in 2007. Many yoga experts have since incorporated facial exercises into their regimen, and soon enough, more and more people have been claiming that including them to their daily routine has made them look a few years younger.
With no conclusive data to support the claims, skeptics came out of the woodwork to dismiss the practice as nothing more than a scam to siphon money away from women who are feeling insecure about their appearance.
But now it’s looking like the claims have firmer ground to stand on as a study conducted at Northwestern University in Chicago concluded that doing facial yoga for half an hour each day over a period of 20 weeks can make you look three years younger.
Dr. Murad Alam, who led the team that conducted the study, said that “it does seem to work.”
Alam said his team decided to investigate if facial exercises can make people look younger because people were asking about it. The initiative found momentum when a mutual acquaintance introduced him to Gary Sikorski, a face yoga expert who made a series of videos called “Happy Face Yoga.”
27 middle-aged women (average age of 54) volunteered for the study, in which they were asked to do 32 different facial exercises for half an hour over a period of five months. Some of the exercises included were opening the mouth to form a long ‘O’, folding the upper lip over the teeth and then smiling to lift the cheek muscles up, and massaging the cheeks with the tips of the fingers.
Before long, a first clinical assessment was made, with dermatologists claiming they have detected subtle but visible changes in the faces of the volunteers who participated in the study.
According to Alam’s report in the Journal of the American Medical Association’s JAMA Dermatology, the women’s estimated age dropped from 50.8 years to 48 years.
Alam admitted that he was a bit concerned that the facial exercises may damage the skin, what with the common knowledge that frowning a lot may cause wrinkles. But the researcher said that wrinkles did not appear since each facial exercise was done for only one minute.
“You are exercising enough to build up muscle but not to create wrinkles,” he explained.
Alam explains that giving facial muscles a work out causes them to grow in size, reversing the effects of sagging skin and the thinning fat.
“That makes the face look younger by making it look fuller,” he added.