Face yoga? There is such a thing? Not only is it a thing, but it is also being studied. The recent edition of JAMA Dermatology reviewed a study being conducted and supported by the Northwestern University Institutional Review Board and registered at ClinicalTrials.gov
Here’s the theory. Your face has muscles, and if you don’t use them, they can become atrophied— which causes wrinkles, fine lines and other signs of aging.
The study surveyed 27 healthy women, aged 40 to 65, all from different backgrounds, and subjected them to two 20- to 30-minute sessions of facial exercises daily over 20 weeks. What the researchers found was the exercises visibly reduced signs of aging, including reducing wrinkles, by encouraging muscle growth in the face. The exercises were demonstrated to the participants over two 90-minute sessions with a certified facial yoga instructor. The participants then performed the exercises daily for 30 minutes. After nine weeks, they did the exercises every other day. By week 20, researchers saw visible changes. The results were measured by surveys and by physicians’ observation. The physicians reviewed the data by observing photographs using an assessment called the Merz-Carruthers Facial Aging Photoscales, also referred to as MCFAP.
The study concluded that while it was conducted on a small scale, the research shows promise when considering treatments for aging or other costly interventions. This is great news for finding ways to reverse aging, and while the study was small, it does show promise and best of all— it’s not costly.