Annelise Hagen, a Brooklyn-based yoga instructor and author of The Yoga Face: Eliminate Wrinkles with the Ultimate Natural Facelift (2007, Avery), created her anti-aging workout based on a simple principle: If the muscles of the face are no different from the muscles in the rest of your body, it only stands to reason that you can tighten and tone them the same way you do the muscles below the neck.
Partly based on vocal training techniques used by actors, The Yoga Face comprises facial exercises, body poses, and breathing methods meant to detox the skin and keep it strong and supple, without Botox, surgery, or expensive "lifting" creams. Here are some of the face-massage techniques Hagen says will rejuvenate your complexion, while releasing built-up tension-which Hagen says probably accounts for 50 percent of the appearance of aging:1. To unwrinkle the forehead and brow: Use your knuckles to rub your temples and forehead. Start from the center of your forehead and radiate out to the temples. This massage relives stress and headaches. Massage for two minutes.
2. To smooth facial lines and prevent wrinkles: A great acupressure point, also helpful for relieving sinus conditions, lies between your nose and your eyes. Press your index fingers or thumbs under the inner arch of your eyebrows, which, again, is helpful for sinus release. Tap the ridge above your eyebrows.
3. To fight discoloration and bags under the eyes: Rub on the point outside of your outer nostrils. Gently rubbing releases toxins from the body that can show up as blotches and bags under they eyes.
4. To detoxify and oxygenate the skin: Find the apple of your cheeks and press your index finger there.
5. To free up facial tension: Place your fingers in the center of your forehead and sweep outward in horizontal lines. Repeat three times. Now lightly press your palms onto your eye sockets and lightly sweep your fingertips down your cheek. Repeat three times.
6. To heighten skin color: Pull your middle earlobes out to the sides with your thumb and index finger four times. Grab your lower earlobes and pull down lightly four times. Then grab your upper earlobes and pull up four times. This is an ancient Indian facial yoga technique that brings circulation to the face.
2007 © Avery
Difficulty level: Easy