Pros Say There Are Major Skin-Boosting Benefits to Working Out Your Face

Photo: Getty/ Watsamon Tri-yasakda
Take one look at all of the "anti-aging" labels decorating the skin-care aisle, and it's abundantly clear that the market for line-smoothing, skin-plumping, pore-minimizing magic is in high demand. While lotions and potions can certainly do their part at helping with these things, for many, solutions like Botox can step in and whisk away those worries for up to four months at a time. Yet, as of late, a third option has hit the beauty scene: Flexing the face like a good old-fashioned workout can help to keep the complexion youthful.

Thanks to the advances in technology, you can take the same principles that you apply to building muscles in your regular workouts and apply them to your complexion. One of the most effective ways to do this is with a micro-current device, which uses soft-wave technology to target deeper within skin. In fact, research presented in JAMA Dermatology found that working out the face helped to improve facial fullness.

"Microcurrent works at two kind of levels," explains Elemis esthetician Krystina Dwyer, who offers these types of treatments at Elemis spas. "When it works to a muscular level, it actually works to lengthen and shorten the muscle fibers in your face." This helps to re-educate your muscle memory, which serves a great anti-aging activation. But not only do the electrical waves stimulate the muscles, they also work to increase the production of collagen and elastin to keep skin looking plump. "That’s why we say it’s like a gym workout for your face or like having a personal trainer," explains Dwyer.

This, in essence, is the complete opposite of what Botox does. "Botox prevents wrinkles because it doesn’t allow the muscle to move,” explains Stefanie DeLibero of NYC’s Gotham Wellness. "Going to have micro-current, we try to work on the major 43 muscles within the face so we’re working on every inch of that face," explains Dwyer. She recommends going for 10 sessions of micro-current over the course of five weeks, "the same way you would got to more than one session at the gym to get your body into shape," then keeping things up with monthly maintenance treatments. "The same way you would got to more than one session at the gym to get your body into shape."

It's worth noting, that you don't necessarily have to be at the hands of a dermatologist in order to utilize this technology.  "I recommend the Conture Kinetic Toning Device ($199). It has a multitude of benefits with over 250,000 hours of research behind it. In clinical trials, 78 percent saw reduction in fine lines and wrinkles," says dermatologist Dr. Dendy Engleman. "I also like microneedling at-home devices. The at-home ones don’t pierce the skin as deeply as the medical grade devices but can be used to enhance penetration of products. The needles are used to puncture the skin to create a controlled skin injury and healing. The slight injury stimulates the growth of collagen, the scaffolding under the skin, which then improves the appearance of some scars and wrinkles."

There's no one-size-fits-all treatment for improving the health of skin, but as technology grows so too do the available options.

'Another wrinkle-redux solution worth being aware of: Maple leaf. And here's why you should be paying attention to those lines on your forehead, for the sake of your life. 

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