Use these seven anti-aging face yoga exercises to relax your muscles and boost your wellbeing

We asked a face yoga expert to design a short anti-aging face yoga routine you can do anywhere for free

Woman performing the eye de-puffer face yoga exercise
(Image credit: Danielle Collins)

Using anti-aging face yoga is a great way to massage your facial muscles, release tension, and promote circulation. It's a straightforward practice that you can do anywhere when you have a spare moment. 

Many of us associate anti-aging yoga moves with something you'd perform on one of the best yoga mats, challenging the core muscles and stepping in and out of warrior poses. But this is just one way to look after your body. 

Whether you use it as a self care idea or as a way to keep your skin in good shape as you go through life, these seven anti-aging face yoga poses are a great place to start, and you don't need any products or special equipment to see the benefits. 

To help you out, we spoke to face yoga expert Danielle Collins, who designed this short routine that you can do to combat the effects of aging, sagging skin, and the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. Here's how to get started. 

Headshot of Danielle Collins
Danielle Collins

Danielle Collins is a leading face yoga expert, with 17 years teaching experience. She is also the creator of the Danielle Collins Face Yoga Method, a toolbox of daily techniques to look after your face and boost your wellbeing.

Seven-move anti-aging face yoga routine

These seven anti-aging face yoga exercises are a great way to target facial muscles, promote circulation and relaxation, and improve muscle tone and reduce tension, all of which can contribute to a more youthful appearance, as we found when we tried face yoga

Although you can do them whenever you have a spare moment, Collins recommends washing your hands before you start so that you don't accidentally rub bacteria onto your face. 

1. Turkey neck toner

Woman performing the Turkey neck toner face yoga pose

(Image credit: Danielle Collins)

This exercise aids in improving the appearance of the neck, which naturally leads onto your face, reducing sagging and contributing to a more youthful look. 

Massaging the muscles in your neck can relieve tension, stress and even pain, which can help your neck to feel more comfortable in the short term but can also prevent tension in the long term.

If your arms ache during the exercise, relax them for a while and lift them again when ready.

  • Place the four fingers of both your hands at the back of the neck, gently pressing into the muscles either side of your spine and tilt your head back so that the fingers press into the muscles a little deeper. Bring your head back to the starting position and repeat again, slowly and with control. Do this 30 times in total. 
  • Then, hold your hands in position and tilt your head back and hold there, wiggling the fingers a bit, perhaps even doing some little circular massages. Do whatever feels intuitively right to release your neck.

2. Lip tuck

Woman performing a lip tuck face yoga pose

(Image credit: Danielle Collins)

The lip tuck exercise strengthens the muscles in your cheeks, and lifts and tones the mouth muscles. It helps the face get used to using both sides equally, which helps redress imbalances that can build up in daily life.

Doing this move in front of a mirror helps to ensure you are curling the corners of the lips equally and that you are smoothing the skin on the lower face enough.

  • Tuck your lips inwards (so if you looked in a mirror you wouldn’t see them). Slightly lift up your lips corners, ensuring you are doing this equally both sides.
  • Use your index fingers to smooth the skin to the side of the mouth and under the mouth. Hold for one minute or less if it feels a lot at first.

3. Cheek and jaw lift

Woman performing the cheek and jaw lift face yoga exercise

(Image credit: Danielle Collins)

If you want to build on sallow cheeks and help lift your lower face this move is designed to strengthen, lift, and tone the muscles around your cheek and jaw. Even if you haven’t got sallow cheeks, this is a lovely technique for lifting the cheek and jaw area.

  • Wrap your lips around your teeth and make a smile shape, lifting the corners of your lips upward so you feel this working in your cheeks.
  • Use your index fingers to smooth the skin around your cheeks and create some resistance. Hold for 30 seconds, relax, and repeat once more, doing one minute in total.

4. Eye de-puffer

Lymphatic drainage around your eye area is promoted by this move, which reduces puffiness and water retention. 

A light touch is key, so make sure you don’t drag the skin at all. Doing it gently will be more effective for lymphatic drainage and prevent harm to your delicate eye area.

  • Place your index fingers just under the outer edge of the eyebrows, then very gently smooth the fingers under your eyes and pause at the inner corners for 10 seconds, pressing this acupressure point.
  • Continue in a circle down under your eye and back to this acupressure point again, pausing for 10 seconds here each time. Keep the massage going for one minute.

5. Fluffy head

Woman performing the fluffy head face yoga exercise

(Image credit: Danielle Collins)

It’s time to ease tension in your head and promote feelings of relaxation through nurturing touch and breath. Be intuitive with the massage. If you feel the need to go deeper or massage in a circular motion, then do so. 

  • Place the tips of all your fingers and thumbs on your head. Press and squeeze and then lift the fingers off in a flicking motion. Move to different places on the head and repeat for 30 seconds in total.
  • Then place the palms of your hands on your head and just relax them there. Close your eyes and breathe deeply in and out through your nose. Visualize tension melting away.

6. Sinus relief

Woman performing the sinus relief face yoga exercise

(Image credit: Danielle Collins)

Promote vibrant and glowing cheeks with this anti-aging face yoga move, which also stimulates an acupressure point renowned for helping with sinus issues, relieving tension and pain, and helping release blocked mucus.

Take a few deep breaths through your nose afterwards to further clear your sinuses.

  • Place your thumbs on the acupressure point either side of the nostrils — you will feel a slight indentation there. Hold for 30 seconds.
  • Slide your thumbs upward and outward, stopping before you get to the skin around the delicate eye area. Lift your thumbs off, then place them back at the starting position and continue this massage for 30 seconds in total.

7. The Bird

Woman performing The Bird face yoga pose

(Image credit: Danielle Collins)

During The Bird, the combination of the tongue movement combined with the turn and tilt of the neck strengthens your neck and jaw muscles to firm and tighten loose skin in this area.

Make sure your chin points up to the ceiling slightly to get the most from this exercise.

  • Turn your head and then slightly tilt it back. Repeatedly bring the tip of your tongue up to the roof of your mouth and back down for 30 seconds.
  • Come back to center and repeat on the other side.

Does face yoga really tighten skin?

Advocates of face yoga claim these techniques can help tighten loose skin, reduce wrinkles, and enhance overall facial appearance. There is scientific research that supports this, though it is limited.

One study published in the National Library of Medicine involved a 20-week study, which found that a daily or alternate-day facial exercise programme may make modest improvements to facial appearance, including increased cheek fullness and a decrease in perceived age. 

However, the study had limitations, such as a small sample size and no control group, which may affect the findings. But as you don't need any equipment or classes, it can still be worth adding to your day. 

For anyone seeking a non-invasive and cost-effective alternative to surgical procedures or anti-aging creams, incorporating face yoga into your skincare routine may be useful. It can, potentially, contribute to a healthier complexion and promote relaxation.

However, it's essential to approach face yoga with realistic expectations and complement it with a skincare regimen and a lifestyle that includes sun protection, learning how to eat healthily, and keeping a water bottle handy for adequate hydration. 

Jessica Downey

Jessica is an experienced fitness writer with a passion for running. Her career in journalism began in local news and she holds a Masters in journalism. Jessica has previously written for Runners World, penning news and features on fitness, sportswear and nutrition. 

When she isn't writing up news and features for Fit&Well covering topics ranging from muscle building, to yoga, to female health and so on, she will be outdoors somewhere, testing out the latest fitness equipment and accessories to help others find top products for their own fitness journeys. Her testing pairs up nicely with her love for running. She recently branched out to running 10Ks and is trying to improve her time before moving on to larger races. Jessica also enjoys building on her strength in the gym and is a believer in health and wellness beginning in the kitchen. She shares all of this on her running Instagram account @jessrunshere which she uses for accountability and for connecting with like-minded fitness lovers.