I remember sometime around my 40th birthday discussing with my sister (a fount of knowledge of all things holistic) how I was destined, as others before us have been, to carry the burden of our hereditary jowls. Why? Because I was starting to notice the sneaky indentations appearing either side of my mouth, threatening to take down my jawline and replace with sacks of sagging skin.
Back in my thirties I dated an Australia guy who I remember showing me a picture of a fellow vet and describing her as pretty. She was pale, not wearing a scrap of make-up and her hair was totally au naturel – frizzy. This got me thinking and I asked him if he honestly thought she was pretty, to which he replied, ‘all girls are pretty.’ I instantly realised that he was right and how lost I was. Here’s a guy who has grown up surrounded by fit, blonde beach babes and still sees beauty in what I see as the average, non-beautified girl.
We live in a totally contradictive world where we are told that looks aren’t important and it’s what’s on the inside that matters. In an ideal, un-materialistic world this would be true, but if like me, you have grown up in an environment/society that is slightly obsessed with looks, then it is important to feel good and this is unfortunately linked with the perception that we lose our good looks (which we don’t appreciate in our youth, anyway) as we age. I’d love to say that I embrace age and truly mean it and insofar as becoming older, wiser and more self-assured, I do. But it’s also true that I find it hard looking in the mirror and seeing my-aging-self looking back.
Saying this I am a true supporter of growing old naturally. But I also believe that like everything in life you mustn’t take it for granted and there is always some degree of work involved in achieving anything worthwhile. Nothing comes easy, right? So… here it is – a little helping hand to delay, if not prevent the inevitable hereditary jowls (it is best to stand in front of a mirror to notice the effects/master the technique):
Place your tongue on the roof of your mouth and lift the edges of your mouth into a slight smile. You should feel your cheeks lift also. Notice the difference??
Most of us let our mouth droop without even realising, coaxing everything around it southwards. Fear not, we can reverse it! Try to remember to do this as often as possible. The more you do it, the more you will instinctively hold your face this way. Remember how your mother told you to stop pulling that face because ‘if the wind changes it will stick like that’? Maybe, she was warning us all along!
Good luck! Oh, and remember, if you find that this works for you, don’t thank me thank my sister, Donna!