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A lady in a satin night dress, rolling a jade roller on the face, in front of a mirror.

How to lose fat in your face

23 Nov 2022 • 3 min read

Have you looked in the mirror lately and thought your face looks a little fuller?

It’s possible for people to gain weight in their face, just as much as it is to carry some extra pounds around their waist or on their hips or thighs.

For some, the facial weight increase is so slight it’s something only they could possibly notice. But for others, it can mean their cheeks look fuller or they develop a double chin.

Face fat can be frustrating and potentially impact your confidence because our faces are always on show. But if you can understand why it happens, then you’re part of the way to helping get rid of it, and potentially preventing it from developing in the first place.

What causes face fat?

As with our bodies, putting weight on in our faces is a result of a build-up of fat deposits.

This excess fat is usually caused by overall weight gain, which is typically linked to one or more of these factors – poor diet, lack of exercise, ageing or genetic conditions. Facial bloating is another face fat culprit; one that tends to fluctuate from day-to-day.1

Fortunately, you don’t just simply have to live with face fat, there are some things you can do to help slim down the fat from your cheeks, your jowls or underneath your chin and neck.

Summary

Face fat is caused by a build-up of fat deposits that’s usually the result of overall weight gain. Some people also experience facial bloating that varies on a daily basis.

How to lose weight from your face

There are lots of different things you can do to try and slim your face down to your desired size. They range from re-thinking what you are putting into your body (and, in turn, your face) to reassessing how active you are.

There are also certain tools you can use on your face to help bring any puffiness down. Plus, there are also specific face weight loss exercises you can do to help tone and work off that excess fat, just as you would with your body. While we’re on the subject, some people find that exercise helps them lose weight from both their face and their body. 

9 exercises to lose face fat

Face weight loss exercises can tone your facial muscles, which then helps make your face look slimmer. And believe it or not, there are a fair few facial exercises out there, although there is limited evidence to back up the effectiveness of face fat workouts.2

Here are some exercises you can easily try right away - it’s said to be able to tone up 40+ facial muscles:

  1. Tone the muscles around your mouth - by saying ‘X’ and ‘O’ in a row. This makes your facial muscles contract and move. Do this exercise daily, repeating it as many times as you like.
     
  2. Tone your cheek muscles – by making a fish face by sucking in your cheeks. Repeat 20 times every day for positive results.
     
  3. Get all your facial muscles working - by opening your mouth widely and roundly. Hold the position for 5 seconds and relax. Repeat up to 30 times over a day.
     
  4. You can also - fill your mouth with air, so that your face looks fat and round. Keep your lips closed, move the air in your mouth from side to side. Do this for 5 minutes a day.
     
  5. Have a facial massage – they enhance oxygen and blood circulation, which helps tighten your skin.3
     
  6. Do some chin lifts - throw your head back and stretch your neck as much as you can. Keep your eyes fixed on the ceiling and try moving your lower lip over the upper lip and smile wide. Hold for 10 seconds and repeat 10 times. This can help reduce a double chin and flabby neck.4
     
  7. Give your forehead a workout - open your eyes wide. Using both hands, try pulling back the skin over your forehead. This will banish crow’s feet and forehead lines too.5
     
  8. Pull a fish face - suck in your cheeks tight and pucker your lips like a fish. Hold the pose for five seconds and repeat 10 times. This will help you lose fat from your cheeks.6
     
  9. Do some cheek puffs - puff out your cheeks. Then try moving air from one side to the other and hold it for 5 seconds. Make a big ‘O’ when you release the air. This will help firm cheek muscles.7

Summary

There are lots of exercises you can do that are specifically aimed at firming up your facial muscles and potentially streamlining your face in the process.

How long does it take to lose face fat?

The length of time it takes to lose weight from your body applies to your face. And because there are so many different factors at play – how often you work out, the type of work out, your calorie intake, etc. – means that how quickly you lose weight will be different to the next person.

Weight fluctuation isn’t as noticeable on a larger frame. If you have a small build and lower BMI, weight may come off more slowly, but be apparent more quickly. However, when your starting size is larger, you’re likely to lose more weight at a faster rate, especially during those early days.

Some people immediately see a change in the size of their thighs, belly or face, which may be genetic.8

Can you lose face fat in week?

A week may be a bit ambitious but, following on from what we’ve just said above, everybody loses weight at different rates, depending on their own individual factors. While it’s not guaranteed to happen, it’s most certainly not impossible. People may certainly find their face looks and feels more toned, especially if they’ve been doing facial exercises.

Summary

 The amount of time it takes to lose facial fat varies from person to person. Some people may start to see a difference within a week, but it’s not guaranteed. What’s more, their face may have toned up, as opposed to having lost weight.

10 ways to lose face fat

The more you work at slimming your face, the more you potentially may be able to get rid of the extra weight.

You may want to just stick to the facial exercises or incorporate lots of other face fat-busting practices into your life too. They include:

  1. Doing cardio – several studies have found cardiovascular exercise can promote fat burning and increase fat loss. Ideally, you need to do around 20 to 40 minutes of cardio a day.9
     
  2. Drinking more water – because when you’re dehydrated, your body (and your face) tends to retain water, and therefore become bloated. Upping your water intake can help hydrate your face and body and prevent water retention.10
     
  3. Resting more – when we don’t sleep, it can sometimes show in our faces, e.g. dark circles and puffiness around the eyes. Getting eight hours of sleep a night is what you’re aiming for.11
     
  4. Examining your diet – to make sure you’re not suffering from any food allergies intolerances, which can cause facial bloating. Overall, bloating is a common indicator of gluten sensitivity and digestive disorders.12
     
  5. Skipping the salt – too much sodium can cause fluid retention, which can then cause swelling and puffiness in your face and other areas.13
     
  6. Cutting back on alcohol – due to the fact it’s high in calories and low in nutrients, and therefore can cause us to put weight on our body and our face.14
     
  7. Facial rollering – there’s a whole load of facial ‘depuffing tools’ that you can use, such as jade rollers, to speed up lymphatic drainage, improve circulation and, last but not least, de-puff your face.15
     
  8. Using natural face masks – face masks made from natural ingredients that hydrate and improve the skin’s natural elasticity can also help. Applying a mask made from milk (that’s nutritious for skin) and honey (that can help tone and tighten), can potentially prove beneficial for reducing the appearance of facial fat and toxins that can cause bloating.
     
  9. Eat fewer refined carbs – such as biscuits and pasta that can lead to weight gain and increased fat storage overall. These carbs have been heavily processed, have little nutritional value and contain lots of sugar and calories.16
     
  10. Up your fibre intake – fibre moves slowly through your digestive tract, keeping you feeling fuller for longer. According to a study of 345 people who were overweight and obese, a higher fibre intake was associated with increased weight loss.17

Summary

Facial, chin and neck exercises aside, there are several other good habits you can adopt to help improve your chance of seeing some facial fat loss results. They include eating more fibre, doing cardio exercise and reducing your refined carb intake.

How to lose chin fat

There are certain exercises that are specifically aimed at tackling double chins. They include:18

  1. Straight jaw juts
  2. Ball exercises
  3. Pucker ups
  4. Tongue stretches
  5. Neck stretches
  6. Bottom jaw juts

Exercising regularly - around 45 minutes of moderate physical activity a day – and strength training twice a week can also help. Meanwhile, eating a healthy and balanced diet that limits sugar and food consumption that can lead to fat build-up and weight gain can also help.19

How to lose weight from your neck

Again, there isn’t an overall solution. A combination of healthy eating and exercise can certainty help. So too can neck exercises like this one that’s designed to firm up neck muscles:20

Tilt the head in all directions while applying minimal resistance in the opposite direction from your hand.

Ideally, you need to do this exercise three times a day and seven times a session to help strengthen the muscles within your neck. Neck exercises aren’t designed to burn neck fat, but help develop muscles in the area, which will give a more toned appearance.

Takeaway

There are several measures you can take to help combat and reduce face fat. The results are very much down to the individual and you may not necessarily lose any weight, just simply tone your facial muscles instead.

The main thing is, face fat isn’t something you just have to put up with, there are targeted ways to help sort it. In the meantime, for more practical insight on face weight loss, check out this article, ‘How to reduce puffiness on your face’.

The advice in this article is for information only and should not replace medical care. Please check with your GP or healthcare professional before trying any supplements, treatments or remedies. Food supplements must not be used as a substitute for a varied and balanced diet and a healthy lifestyle.

Last updated: 19 April 2021

Sources

  1. https://www.fatherly.com/health-science/doctor-explains-why-your-face-is-fat/
  2. https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/lose-fat-in-face-cheeks/
  3. https://www.goodtoknow.co.uk/wellbeing/lose-weight-in-face-524275
  4. https://www.femina.in/wellness/fitness/5-easy-workouts-that-reduce-wrinkles-and-give-you-a-slimmer-face-7196.html
  5. https://www.femina.in/wellness/fitness/5-easy-workouts-that-reduce-wrinkles-and-give-you-a-slimmer-face-7196.html
  6. https://www.femina.in/wellness/fitness/5-easy-workouts-that-reduce-wrinkles-and-give-you-a-slimmer-face-7196.html
  7. https://www.femina.in/wellness/fitness/5-easy-workouts-that-reduce-wrinkles-and-give-you-a-slimmer-face-7196.html
  8. https://www.verywellfit.com/how-long-does-it-take-to-see-weight-loss-results-4109365/
  9. https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/lose-fat-in-face-cheeks/
  10. https://www.womenshealthmag.com/weight-loss/a19984973/how-to-lose-weight-in-your-face/
  11. https://greatist.com/health/how-to-lose-face-fat#sleep
  12. https://www.womenshealthmag.com/weight-loss/a19984973/how-to-lose-weight-in-your-face/
  13. https://greatist.com/health/how-to-lose-face-fat#less-salt
  14. https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/lose-fat-in-face-cheeks#TOC_TITLE_HDR_5
  15. https://www.byrdie.com/how-to-lose-face-fat-4795838
  16. https://brightside.me/inspiration-health/13-things-that-can-reduce-face-and-neck-fat-say-goodbye-to-the-double-chin-795027/
  17. https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/lose-fat-in-face-cheeks#8.-Eat-more-fiber
  18. https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/lose-fat-in-face-cheeks#8.-Eat-more-fiber
  19. https://www.healthline.com/health/how-to-get-rid-of-double-chin#chin-exercises
  20. https://www.abccompoundingpharmacy.com/can-you-lose-neck
 
bhupesh-panchal

Bhupesh Panchal

Author

Senior Regulatory Affairs Associate

Joined Holland & Barrett: April 2019

Masters Degree in Toxicology and BSc Hons in Medical Biochemistry

Bhupesh started his career as a Clinical Toxicologist for Public Health England, advising healthcare professionals all around the country on how to manage clinical cases of adverse exposure to supplements, pharmaceuticals, cosmetics, industrial chemicals and agricultural products.

After 7 years in this role and a further year working as a drug safety officer in the pharmaceutical industry, Bhupesh joined Holland & Barrett as a Senior Regulatory Affairs Associate in 2019.
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