Keeping your smile young and fresh doesn’t necessarily mean using expensive facial scrubs or anti-wrinkle creams. It mostly suggests that you need to actively change the way the muscle groups in your face move. It’s proven that facial exercises, or anti-aging face yoga, are able to help you appear and feel more youthful.

Here at Brightside we’d like to provide you with 8 simple yet effective anti-aging exercises you can perform to achieve a firmer and more toned face.

1. Face massage

You might enjoy massaging your own face if you don’t have the ability to go to a professional. Face massage will help lift your facial features because it’s all about improving blood supply and toning the muscles in your face.

With the tips of your fingers stroke your forehead from the lower part to the upper part. You might also want to massage your scalp, moving your fingers in circular motions. Then move over to your cheeks and pat them in the direction of your temples. Normally, it would take around 20 massages 2 to 3 times a week for you to notice the difference in your facial features.

Wash your hands and face before the procedure.

2. Contrast massage

Sometimes a contrast massage is what can magically transform and lift your face. It’s also extremely helpful in getting rid of the double chin. To perform this kind of massage you need a towel, water, and, most importantly, the desire to look young and fresh.

Fold the towel in half and wet it in cold, lightly salted water. Then take it by its ends and lightly pat your chin with the towel. Perform the patting 10 times and then do the exact same thing again but with a towel wet with lukewarm water.

3. Alphabet

To strengthen face muscles that have gotten just tiny bit too weak, which is usually followed by the appearance of wrinkles, you might want to recite the alphabet. For example, such simple sounds as X and O can make all the difference. By pronouncing them for just a couple of minutes a day, you start toning your face muscles back to life, which is essential for your anti-aging routine.

4. Temple rising

This exercise helps in moving plenty of face muscles, but most important are the temple muscles, because as these weaken, the whole upper face start to sag. Yoshiko Mamada was the one who invented this technique using some breathing exercises.

  1. Stand in front of the mirror. Place your right hand on your left temple area so that your fingers embrace the outer corner of the eye and the outer edge of the eyebrow. Lightly press and pull the skin up. The head should not lean forward.
  2. Stay in this position, then start slowly tilting your head to the right, gently stretching the neck. Shoulders must remain in relaxed.
  3. Keeping this position, start pulling the tongue in the direction of the head. At the same time exhale and play the sound of “ha.” Breathe in through the nose. Staying in this position, breathe 4-5 times, continuing to pull the tongue.
  4. Put your tongue back in your mouth, relax your muscles, and return to the starting position. Repeat the same manipulations on the opposite side of the head.

5. Face gymnastics

As we’ve mentioned before, face yoga is the key to a younger face. Try performing the next exercise 3 times a week.

Lower your eyelids, close your eyes, and stay in that position for 10 seconds, then put your hands on your forehead, press lightly, and try to move your eyeballs clockwise. This exercise could help you to get rid of wrinkles around the eyes and nose.

Next try puffing your cheeks. Breathe in and hold the air in your mouth. Start rolling it from one cheek to another and repeat everything for 10 seconds. By doing this, you might get rid of wrinkles near the mouth, as well as sagging cheeks.

6. Funny faces

You don’t have to take your face too seriously when trying to bring back its freshness. With these exercises you can enjoy making funny faces at yourself in the mirror or even at your friends.

For example, you can widely open your mouth and try to reach your chin with the tip of your tongue. The point of this exercise is to tense your muscles tense and begin to build them up again. You can also act surprised at everything, opening your mouth wide, and raising your eyebrows to their highest point.

7. Clown face

Clown face is an extremely popular technique too. By performing it, you tone the muscles on your face that are required for smiling, which means the wrinkles there would take much longer to develop.

Here you just have to crazily smile as wide as you can with your mouth shut tight. Then you need to wrinkle your nose and play with your eyebrows for 10 seconds. After that, stop smiling and slightly lower your chin for 5 seconds. Then do the whole thing again and continue with the clown face exercise for 5 minutes, 3 times a week.

8. Other face yoga

Face yoga is usually more effective than all of the face masks and face creams combined. By correctly performing it you’ll see a drastic change with your wrinkles, under-eye bags, and saggy cheeks.

There are millions of tutorials if you’d like to try it, and here is one example.

If you have any other suggestions for anti-aging techniques you can perform at home, please mention them in the comments below.

Illustrated by Alena Tsarkova for Bright Side