A Natural Facelift: What are Face Pilates?

If you haven’t heard of pilates already, they are a physical fitness system developed by trainer Joseph Pilates. He described the art of “controlled movement” which is both like exercise and therapy combined. Pilate exercises emphasize your body’s alignment with its breathing, core, balance, and coordination. Many of the exercises begin at one’s core which includes the abdomen, lower back, and hips to ensure a proper base for more advanced pilate exercises.

Because pilates have found great success in treating many chronic physical ailments as well as producing a healthy mental state, some have applied the same techniques outlined by Joseph Pilates to facial exercises to create pilates for the face. Although still a very small subset of face yoga, face pilates are still worth discussing and may suit you enough to incorporate them into your daily beautifying and exercise routine.

So, What Are Face Pilates?

Pilates for the face are similar to face massages but they more subtly workout your muscles, tightening the skin in the process. They are both a form of facial yoga and face exercise. Considered a non-invasive means of lifting the facial muscles, face pilates increase blood circulation and give your appearance more vibrancy. They’ve also been called a form of face aerobics because it is energy-generating.

Face pilates are thus on the weaker end of facial fitness routines because they do not require much physical exertion. Instead, they are closely tied to one’s mental health. They lessen wrinkles and loose skin by targeting the neck, cheeks, lips, eyes, nose, and forehead through face stretching techniques. Face pilate techniques have been found to be an effective anti-aging facial exercise because they improve skin elasticity.

The basic steps for face pilates generally include:

  • Controlling your breathing at a steady pace
  • Massaging your face
  • Utilizing facial stretches
  • Applying pressure on certain points of your face with your fingers

Some practicers of face pilates tend to have an expert conduct the massage therapy to be more precise instead of doing it themselves, although it is up to you if you trust yourself doing them correctly.

How to Do Face Pilates

Getting Started

The first thing you’re going to want to do is massage your face with a serum or some moisturizer. Serums work best because it will allow your hands to glide and not drag on the skin, unlike lotions.

Some serums for face pilates we recommend to use include:

  • Hyaluronic Acid Serum with Vitamins A & C by New York Biology: well-known for its anti-aging effects, smoothing your skin and balancing your face. Perfect before bed.
  • Vitamin C Serum with Hyaluronic Acid by Ecco Bella Beauty: a totalizing face moisturizer that we found works well with face pilate routines.
  • Pure Organic Vitamin C Serum by Hotmir: vitamin C is excellent for reducing dark spots, wrinkles, and blemishes because it provides much-needed nutrients for the skin. This serum is also well-suited for face pilates.
  • ALOA Skincare Hyaluronic Acid Serum: the most expensive serum on this list, this ALOA serum is highly-rated which is why we had to include it. It’s known for making your skin plump, naturally healthy, and vibrant.

Face Pilate Exercises

After washing your face and applying the serum onto your hands, you’re going to want to start by putting the palm of your hands on each side of the lower half of your face. With your hands against your skin, work towards the top of your face pushing your cheeks upwards until you reach your temples. It feels quite nice, doesn’t it? You should repeat this 15-20 times. It’s a relaxing bedtime routine that will do wonders for your skin.

However, you’re also going to need to massage other areas of your face as well. For example:

  • Apply two fingers at your temples and press against the skin. Move your fingers back towards your hairline and you will feel your face stretch. Repeat as needed.
  • Put your palm on your forehead and push it back. Repeat this massage 15 or so times.
  • Along your jawline, pinch the skin and release it. Do this 10 or so times to keep the blood circulating in that area.

In a more professional setting, face pilates are incorporated into massaging your neck as demonstrated in the video below.


More Facial Exercises

Oftentimes, pilates for the face as conducted by professional massagers. They sometimes accompany spa treatments. Yet, there’s no reason why you can’t recreate these relaxing beauty practices in your own home once you learn the proper face fitness technique.

However, face pilates are more than just massages. They also involve pressure points and facial expressions which allow for better skin elasticity and thus reduce wrinkles. One can just as well call it a form of facial aerobics. One video we stumbled across is this one by Inner Strength Pilates & Barre where she goes through certain face pilates and how to do them.


It’s worth mentioning, however, that one of the easiest ways we found to do face pilates on our own was through downloading this nifty Face Pilates App developed by Studio Australia. It’ll help you to better visualize which muscles you are focusing on when doing your face pilates.

Studio Australia also their own video playlist where they demonstrate techniques and how to do them correctly, shown below.

Although pilates for the face are still relatively new, they are a growing specialty within the realm of facial exercises and massages. We can expect more face pilate practitioners to emerge in the coming years as this trend continues to catch on.

Other Tips and Tricks

Face pilates are best accompanied by other face fitness techniques and methods to boost collagen production, reduce wrinkles and blemishes, and give your skin glow.

Face masks and patches provide nutrients for your skin should be done together with pilates to ensure your skin stays vibrant. Additionally, there are many rollers, massagers, and brushes which will allow your face to absorb more nutrients after applying serums and doing face pilate exercises.

For more information on face exercises more generally, please read our mega-article, The Comprehensive Guide to Facial Exercises.

Do you have any experience with face pilates? Are they effective? Let us know your thoughts in the comments.

1 COMMENT

  1. Face Pilates? I just came across it by googling face exercises and pilates. I am a pilates teacher as well as face yoga method teacher. I wonder what is the difference between face pilates and face yoga method. Where I can find more info please? Is there any official training to become face pilates instructor? Thank you. Bonnie

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