Fact or Fiction: Facial exercises can help prevent sagging skin.

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How many people have heard about face yoga or facial exercises, but are unsure if these methods really work for tightening sagging skin? There are a number of YouTube tutorials, books, and miscellaneous information on the subject available online, which may confuse the general public.

Articles in Cosmopolitan and Marie Claire boast facial exercise as an effective method for obtaining a younger-looking face. If muscle training works to strengthen the body, it must work in the same way on the face, right?

“The exercises work the hypodermis or the lower layer of the skin, the dermis or the middle layer, and the epidermis or the upper layer,” says face yoga expert, Danielle Collins. “By working all these layers correctly, it will increase the blood circulation, allowing more oxygen and more nourishment to reach the cells of the skin. The result is a clear, healthy complexion with a beautiful glow which has less toxins and has a better ability to absorb moisture.”

The reality is that there has been absolutely no research confirming this statement to be true. On the contrary, plastic surgeons unanimously agree that facial exercises can indeed cause deeper expression lines and more wrinkling, but why?

The hypodermis (subcutaneous tissue) is mostly made up of fat tissue and fibrous bands that anchor the skin to the deep fascia. This layer may vary in levels in the body from very minimal, such as in areas of the eyelids, or relatively thick, such as in the fat around the abdomen and waist. Hypodermis aging is observed by the loss of fat tissues, which affects the shape of the face, neck, and hands – sagging skin. The cheeks and eye sockets may hollow out and the skin on the neck, breasts, and hands may lose its firmness.

Muscular stimulation by facial exercise does not correct this issue; furthermore, more expression lines are created in the areas where the hypodermis is thinnest. Through repeated strenuous facial muscle engagement, more lines are formed in the same way crow’s feet, marionette lines, and forehead wrinkles are naturally created.

What methods actually work to reduce sagging skin? Manual facial stimulation, such as Dien Chan multireflexology, facial acupressure, facial acupuncture, and European massage are all effective at toning the facial muscles and stimulating circulation, which offers a plump, revived appearance to sagging skin. There are also numerous devices that tone and lift sagging skin, including microcurrent machines, phototherapy LED, and radio frequency modalities. In a medical setting, machines such as ThermiTight, Thermi-
Smooth, IPL, and fractional laser are all beneficial in tightening the skin without surgical involvement.

Topical products based on hyaluronic acid, peptides, and growth factors hydrate and nourish the skin, giving it a supple and youthful glow. In addition to anti-aging products, regular use of sunscreen protects the skin from sun damage and elastosis.

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