Here, Carole, explains her method for rejuvenating skin . . .
‘I first began experimenting with facial exercises 27 years ago, after a botched cosmetic operation on my nose completely altered my appearance and left me looking much older than my 36 years. I was working as a beauty therapist at that time — running my own skin care clinic — and I lost all confidence in the way I looked after that operation.
‘Of course, I could have had my nose re-worked, but the whole experience had made me so wary of cosmetic surgery that I decided to try to find a more natural approach to improve my looks instead.
‘After experimenting with facial massage and facial exercises, I came up with a programme that made a dramatic difference to the shape, tone and texture of my face — and it wasn’t long before my friends and workmates noticed the amazing results, too.
‘With regular exercise, my face really did look younger and more radiant — even the unattractive dent in my nose was less evident. And so the Facercise programme was born.
‘My first Facercise book was an international bestseller — and, over the years, I have regularly improved my programme to include the latest science and create a faster, even more efficient workout.
Botox was first approved in 1989 to treat uncontrollable blinking and misaligned eyes
‘Working the facial muscles against a resistance — such as pressure from your fingers — works in the same way that lifting weights can change the shape of your body and your skin tone.
‘By stretching and strengthening the muscles in your face through the series of carefully targeted exercises detailed here — in this exclusive extract from my new book, Ultimate Facercise — I show you how you can literally open up the entire eye area, soften dark circles and wrinkles, define and lift your cheeks — even turn the coners of your mouth up and firm your neck and jawline, all in record time.’
So, what are you waiting for?
For the best results, follow the exercises here and repeat the entire eight-minute programme, all the way through, just twice a day — no more, no less.
Please remember that in the case of facial exercise, less really is more. Overwork the face with too many repetitions and you may end up with a taut, tired look, rather than a plump, youthful glow.
Be consistent, patient and stick to the plan and you should start to notice improvements within a week.
After that, it’s simply a matter of keeping up the good work if you want to look years younger than you really are.
THE EYE OPENER
WHAT IT CLAIMS TO DO: Tones the upper and lower eyelids and reduces under-eye puffiness, making your eyes appear larger, younger and more alert.
METHOD: Place your index fingers together between your brows, then wrap your thumbs lightly around the outer-eye corners, as if you have a pair of sunglasses around your eyes. Squeeze your eyes tightly shut while pulling your two index fingers up slightly between your brows and pulling your thumbs out towards the top of your ears as you do so. Keep your eyes tightly shut — and keep pulling up and out with your fingers so the muscles around your eyes are working continuously against the pressure from your fingers for a count of 40 seconds.
WHAT IT CLAIMS TO DO: Raises the brow and diminishes hooding of the upper eyelids. Also smoothes out vertical lines between the brows and furrows across the forehead.
METHOD: Spread your fingers across the centre of your forehead. Now pull your fingertips down against your brows as you push your eyebrows up, creating a tension in your forehead muscles. Keep your eyebrows pushed up and fingers pulling down for the count of 30 seconds. Do the Furrow Smoother twice daily. For heavy lines, repeat three times a day. I also suggest sleeping at night with surgical tape over the forehead lines — this allows the muscles to relax while dreaming, and you will quickly see softened lines when you wake up.
LOWER EYELID LIFTER
WHAT IT CLAIMS TO DO: Firms the eye muscles to diminish dark circles and reduce under-eye puffiness.
METHOD: You can do this exercise sitting up or lying down. Place your index fingers lightly at your outer eye corners — where you can still feel the lower lashes. Now make a strong squint up with your lower eyelids. You should be able to feel the outer eye muscles pulse. Look up to the ceiling. Push your face forward and your shoulders back for resistance — you can push your feet into the floor for added resistance. Hold this squint for a count of 40 seconds. Perform the Lower Eyelid Lifter twice a day. However, if you have excessive under-eye puffiness, repeat this exercise three times.
WHAT IT CLAIMS TO DO: Lifts the facial muscles which give shape to the cheeks — and helps to fill out hollows under the eyes.
METHOD: Place an index finger lightly on the top of each cheek. Now smile with the middle of your upper lip while thinking of the expression ‘Ewww’ (the sound you might make if you had just smelled something revolting) — pulling the top lip flat against your teeth. Keep your upper and lower lips firmly pulling away from each other (use your lips rather than your jaw hinge to do this) and feel your cheeks move under your index fingers. Repeat this smile and release, thinking of the expression ‘Ewww’, 20 times.
WHAT IT CLAIMS TO DO: The nose continues to grow as we get older, which can age the face. This exercise will help it to retain a youthful, firmer shape. A well-toned nose can even disguise small nose imperfections, such as a bump or hollow.
METHOD: Grasp the bridge of your nose with your thumb and index finger, and push your thumb and index finger in towards your face. Push your nose tip up firmly with your other index finger. Flex the muscles in your nose downwards at the same time, by pulling your upper lip down over your teeth. Hold for a second then release the lip. Repeat the exercise 40 times. You should feel your nose tip push against your finger each time.
THE LIP LIFT
WHAT IT CLAIMS TO DO: The corners of the mouth droop with age. This firms them up.
METHOD: Press your lips together then pull the corners of your mouth in tightly. Hold this expression and tap your index fingers at the corners of your mouth. Move your fingers up and down at the corners of your mouth as you visualise your mouth corners moving up and down until you experience a burning sensation in the muscles at either side of your mouth. Pulse your index fingers up and down quickly for a count of 40 seconds to intensify the burn, working the muscles to their maximum capacity. At the end of the exercise, keep your lips together and blow between them, making sure that you vibrate your lips to release any tension.
WHAT IT CLAIMS TO DO: Makes the mouth look fuller, younger and firmer without the expense of costly fillers.
METHOD: Curl your upper lip under itself, pressing it up against your gums. Hold it in place with your index finger then press the centre of your upper lip with your other index finger. Visualise crushing a ball in the centre of your lip, slowly pulling your finger away each time. When you start to feel a burn, rub your lip with 20 quick circular motions. Now repeat the exercise, but use your thumb and index finger to press and release at either corner of your mouth simultaneously. Once you feel a burn in the corners, make 20 quick circles over the areas with your thumb and index finger.
WHAT IT CLAIMS TO DO: This exercise will help to plump out and smooth the deep lines that can form from the nostrils down to the corners of the mouth.
METHOD: Keeping your upper lip pressing against your teeth — make a long narrow ‘O’ shape with your mouth. Now place your index fingers at the corners of your mouth, then very slowly move your fingers up the naso-labial lines from your mouth corners to your nose corners. Once you get to the nose, move your fingers very slowly down towards the corners of your mouth again. Keep repeating up and down until you feel a burn in the naso-labial line — then pulse your fingers up and down quickly for a final count of 30 seconds.
WHAT IT CLAIMS TO DO: This simple exercise will strengthen a sagging jaw line, giving extra lift and tone and more definition — getting rid of that hard-to-shift double chin.
METHOD: Open your mouth and roll your lower lip over your bottom teeth. Make a small mouth — not a smile. Keep your upper lip pressing against your teeth. Slowly open and close your mouth five times, as if your mouth corners and chin are connected and working together to close your mouth. Hold the final position with your mouth closed for a few seconds, then pull your chin up towards the ceiling another centimetre — and hold the position once more.
NECK AND CHIN LIFT
WHAT IT CLAIMS TO DO: Firms the chin, neck and jawline, helping double chins to disappear.
METHOD: Place one hand on the front of your neck with light pressure, and spread the other out just in front of you, palm flat on a wall. Point your chin to the ceiling and smile strongly, pushing out your tongue and curling it towards your nose. Holding this expression, push away from the wall with your hand quickly as if you were in a rocking chair. Push away and rock back 30 times. Turn your head to the right (keeping your chin up and your tongue curled up, and your other hand on your neck) — and look over your shoulder. Rock 30 times, then repeat looking over your left shoulder.
CHANGING YOUR DIET CAN HELP, TOO
Avoid refined foods and sugar. When refined carbohydrates such as white rice and pasta made with white flour are digested, the sugar molecules that are produced can attach themselves to the collagen in our skin over time. Collagen keeps the skin looking plump and youthful — but, when it is cross-linked with too much sugar, it can leave you with a discoloured and deeply lined complexion.
Eat more protein. Two servings of lean protein (oily fish, chicken, eggs or other lean meats) every day have been shown to promote repair cell and skin health.
Watch the salt. Too much salt in the diet is bad for health and can lead to water retention and puffy skin. Don’t add salt to food and check labels. It is recommended that an adult eats no more than 6g salt a day.
Drink water. Drinking eight glasses of water a day really will help to maintain a healthy body and hydrate skin to keep it radiant and wrinkle-free.
Eat a wide range of brightly coloured fruit and veg. The powerful antioxidant vitamins in brightly coloured berries, carrots, peppers and greens can enhance your health and the condition of your skin.
..AND BRUSHING YOUR SKIN
While our skin does a pretty good job of shedding dead skin cells on its own — unfortunately, the process starts to slow down dramatically as we age.
To restore a youthful, rosy glow to your complexion, and lift and tone the skin on your face and neck, use a facial buffer sponge (which can be bought for a few pounds from Boots) or rough flannel to gently buff over clean dry skin in small circles before applying moisturiser.