Can Facial Exercises Improve Your Skin?

Growing older means that our skin loses its elasticity and eventually begins to droop or sag. Over the past several years, there has been a surge of interest in facial exercises. The idea is that, by “working” the muscles throughout your face, your skin becomes tighter and in due course, fine lines and wrinkles disappear. Giving your facial muscles a good exercise goes beyond merely making funny faces; it can include donning a mask that sends electric currents into the muscles to stimulate contractions.

Do facial exercises truly work? Are they really a viable solution to the drooping skin that comes with age? In a word, no. Today, we’re going to take a closer look at facial exercises and the reasons why they’re not effective.

Why Your Skin Sags With Age

The main reason why your skin begins to lose its tight appearance as you grow older is because of the breakdown of collagen fibers and loss of elastin. While it is normal for this to happen as we age, the deterioration can be accelerated by excessive exposure to the sun. Along with that, the layer of fat that rests underneath the dermis begins to diminish as years pass. At the same time, fine lines and wrinkles are made more prominent by repetitive frowns, smiles, and other movements. It is important to understand how these things happen in order to appreciate why facial exercises do not work.

How Facial Exercises Are Supposed To Work

Enthusiasts claim that performing facial exercises develops the muscles throughout the face, revitalizing the skin and pulling it taut. In doing so, lines and wrinkles disappear, giving the skin a younger, tighter, and more supple appearance. In truth, the skin does not work that way. Exercising the facial muscles will not build collagen fibers, nor will it create elastin or replace the lost layer of fat. Also, keep in mind that Botox, which is a proven solution to giving the skin a smoother look, works by inhibiting the very muscles that facial exercises stimulate.

Proven Skin Care Solutions

The natural breakdown of collagen fibers and the loss of elastin that comes with age is made significantly worse by sun damage. Making funny faces to stimulate the facial muscles will not help rebuild the collagen or elastin under your dermis. The most effective way to protect your skin from premature aging is to use a well formulated broad spectrum sunscreen and formulations designed to improve your skin’s elasticity while stimulating collagen production. Here are 3 solutions to consider:

Anthelios Sunscreens - formulated with Mexoryl XL and Mexoryl SX plus other effective sun filtering agents, Anthelios offers photostable broad spectrum protection from UVA and UVB rays.
La Roche Posay Active C XL – Vitamin C is an active ingredient that helps to stimulate collagen production in this anti-UVA formulation that counteracts wrinkles.
Neostrata Wrinkle Repair - A skin care solution that stimulates the production of collagen, and helps reduce wrinkles and fine lines.

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amy said,

October 25, 2008 @ 5:20 pm

i always thought that facial exersize is good for our skin, i need to know more about this subject.

Paul said,

August 9, 2010 @ 11:28 am

I have to disagree with this article. I’ve been doing facial exercises for about 4 years now… and the structure and shape of my face has become much more youthful (pumped up cheekbones and temples, sharpened jawline). I have the new TRIANGLE of YOUTH. But the key is WEIGHT-BEARING resistance exercise. Those electrical stimulation devices sold by Dr. Perricone and Suzanne Somers don’t work. It has to be WEIGHT-BEARING RESISTANCE. I’ve pumped up the volume of my facial muscles tremendously. And we normally lose volume and tone in the face as we age. Plus, it you exercise till your face BURNS… you release lactic acid which stimulates collagen growth. (Similar the way Poly-Lactic-Acid or Sculptra stimulates collagen growth.

ann barbor said,

April 27, 2011 @ 2:47 pm

The only criticism I’ve come across is from dermatologists and plastic surgeons. Have been doing daily facial exercises for 5 months now using a popular electro stimulation device, I have softer nose to mouth lines, plumper cheeks and most noticeably disappearance of my sagging jowls. My lids were hiding my eyes and I had bad bags that even my glasses couldn’t hide but now I’ve got arched eye brows, big eyes and eye bags are half the size! It’s not plastic surgery but the best natural alternative. Facial exercises let you age gracefully and best all it’s cheap, a lot cheaper than expensive face creams and surgical/non-surgical procedures.

Sharmani said,

April 28, 2011 @ 10:37 am

Ann, thanks for the feedback. We appreciate your input.

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