"In Traditional Chinese Medicine and in our practice of Facial Yoga there is no dividing line between our health and well-being and cosmetics. To be radiant on the outside, to have divine lips, we have to take care not only of the outside, but also of our emotions, our internal organs and our spirit. The key is always to create harmony throughout our own Universe," says Carolina Winograd, Facial Yoga instructor and founder of Kaliope Glow @kaliope.glow.
Put into practice this mini facial yoga routine, and in a few weeks, you will notice how your lips will improve and, above all, how good you will feel.
First: Initial Posture
This posture is ideal for releasing tension from the entire face. It extends, elevates and strengthens the area of the lower cheekbones (buccinators and risorio muscles) and the area around the mouth (orbicularis muscle of the mouth). This means that it helps fight wrinkles that form around the mouth, smoothes nasolabial lines and fine wrinkles from laughter. In addition, by activating blood and lymphatic circulation in the area, we bring oxygen and nutrients to each cell, favoring the production of collagen and elastin naturally, also eliminating all toxins and waste that lead us to age prematurely, which significantly improves the condition of the tissues, making our lips -with regular practice- become more turgid, moisturized and elastic.
According to Traditional Chinese Medicine, this posture is ideal for harmonizing the spleen (buccinator muscle) and stomach (upper lip - orbicularis muscle of the lips). How is it done?
1. Place three fingers of your left palm on your lips and squeeze them to create pressure on the lips, under the lips and above the lips.
2. Fill every part of your oral cavity with air as if you wanted to inflate a balloon.
3. Now, place the fingers of the right hand on the right cheek and push inwards, so that all the air is transferred to the left side of the cheek, creating tension there.
4. Be careful not to create wrinkles with your fingers on your cheek and keep your other facial muscles relaxed.
5. Look up and back and breathe deeply. Hold the pose for 30 seconds.
6. Disarm the posture gently and switch sides. We repeat again once more from each side.
Second: revitalizing posture
This posture rejuvenates, lifts and tones practically the 57 muscles of the face and neck. It is the perfect posture to elevate the cheekbones, reduce nasolabial wrinkles, volumize the lips, and eliminate tension from the face, especially the masticatory muscles. It also balances the most important glands in our body; hypothalamus, pituitary, pineal gland, thyroid and thymus. It softens and revitalizes the skin of the face, especially lips, neck and décolleté. How to do it?
1. Lower your shoulders, breathe deeply, and then raise the corners of your mouth and smile.
2. With your mouth make a long and narrow "O".
4. Hold this pose for a few seconds, breathe and feel how the muscles elongate.
5. Bring your upper and lower lips inward covering your teeth tightly and hold that position.
5. Make sure your "O" is still long and narrow and your lips don't close.
6. Raise your cheeks as when you smile, and bring the corners of your mouth up. Be careful not to create wrinkles around the eyes.
7. When you have mastered the posture, close your eyes and look back to strengthen the lower eyelid and activate the hypothalamus. Do not raise your forehead, or raise your upper eyelids, just as your shoulders should be relaxed at all times.
8. Keep keeping your "O" even longer and lift your cheeks, then bring your head slightly up and back.
9. To avoid wrinkles, place your fingers on your temples, press your muscles and push up.
Third step: volumizing self-massage
Finish this mini routine, with a lip self-massage that will help you eliminate lactic acid from the area, drain stagnant lymph and further activate blood circulation, in order to inject your lips with a shot of oxygen and nutrients. How to do it?
1. Lower your shoulders, breathe deeply, and then form tweezers with the index finger and thumb of each hand.
2. With these tweezers take your lips from the center. Now start pressing them alternating 3 seconds of pressure, 1 second of rest, holding these movements for 30 seconds.
3. Then, you will run your hands to the right, until you get to press the corner and a little more tissue (when you feel a kind of lump, continue massaging, it is the right cardiolus, a structure made up of muscle fibers from several muscles that are near the mouth and nose).
4. Return with the same movement to the center, and then repeat to the left.
You can do this self-massage every time you feel that your lips are losing hydration, luminosity and smoothness.
Recommendations for the practice of facial yoga
- The best time to implement this mini routine is during the morning, because according to Traditional Chinese Medicine, the stomach and spleen are most active between 7 am and 11 am.
- Before entering fully into the postures, take a few seconds to breathe, calm the breath and feel how your lips are (are they tense, are they tight, are the corners drooping?).
- Do not use facial oil for this routine because it will make your fingers slip and you will not be able to perform it. Prepare your skin better with a non-oily moisturizing toner and serum. And only at the end of the practice, apply the facial cream or oil that you normally use.
- Try to do the routine in front of a mirror to take care of the posture and check that you are not generating any wrinkles during practice.
- If during the day, your lips become dry, you can massage them again. There are no contraindications. In fact, every time you massage them with the pincer movement, you give them a shot of oxygen and nutrients.
Hydration. Do not forget to hydrate throughout the day, trying to incorporate drinks with electrolytes: water with a pinch of sea salt (if you have high blood pressure problems, consult your doctor beforehand), to which you can add lemon, or some other fruit or herb to flavor. To take care of the spleen, it is always better to drink warm drinks, never cold, much more when our lips tend to dehydrate.
If you drink mate and you like it hot -like me- try to moisturize your lips before and after drinking, so that the temperature of the bulb does not dry your lips.
Do not wet your lips with saliva: due to its composition, it will dehydrate them even more.
Moistening. Use natural balms or protectors, which if possible are organic. The skin always absorbs everything we apply to it and, in addition, in this case, we ingest it without realizing it. The level of toxicity of many cosmetics is high, even when they are approved by ANMAT, so it is very important to understand which ingredients are noble and which are best avoided.
Exfoliation. Do not exfoliate your lips EVER. Chan! The skin of your lips is very sensitive and delicate. Although, when you exfoliate your lips you are removing dead cells, you are also leaving your lips with a layer of tissue that – although at first sight and touch seems softer, like a baby – is not prepared to protect you and protect yourself from UV rays, wind, temperature, etc. That eventually causes premature aging of the skin. Keratinocytes, cells of our epidermis, regenerate on their own (that is, there is an organic exfoliation) every 4 weeks approximately. If we activate our blood and lymphatic circulation naturally with massages and facial yoga, and take care of our lips and skin with suitable products, we will keep them jovial, turgid and luminous, beyond climatic, seasonal, hormonal variations and the passage of time.
See alsoS.O.S. Winter: lips to the rescue