Hip & Healthy founder, Sadie, went to the launch of the new Face Toned beauty app and came away with a whole new philosophy on anti-ageing.
I used to think that a concoction of SPF and moisturiser and a balanced diet (with an extra helping of antioxidants) was all you needed to arm yourself in the battle against ageing. That was, until I met Carme. Carme is the incredibly youthful looking founder of Facetoned – a workout programme designed to work out the muscles in your face, build collagen and keep you looking younger for longer. You can read all about Hip & Healthy experiencing a Face Toned Class with Carme here.
But now, to experience FaceToned yourself, you don’t even need to set foot in their trendy Notting Hill studio as Carme has just launched the FaceToned app – designed to bring her amazing face workout to as many people as possible and from the comfort of your own home. Judging by Carme’s own face – the results are pretty amazing. And when she explained to us the science behind why it works so well it feels like a no-brainer: the Pilates-based exercises work deep into the core muscles and then the more superficial ones, creating natural definition and a more toned appearance. It also helps the production of collagen and boosts the natural detoxification process too.
The app allows you to personalise your workouts with weekly online live classes webinars, and you’ll have access to more than 50 recipes to help nourish your skin and muscles. You’ll also have access to the FaceToned Foundation 6-weeks/5-days programme and free live face-to-face webinars to answer questions, get helpful tips and do a live workout.
Discover more here.
Ageing is a natural and unavoidable part of life, yet many of us are keen to find a solution to help us look our best. Treatments and products play a big part, and facial fitness is the latest technique designed to slow down the natural signs of ageing.
FaceToned® Facial Fitness was created by Pilates teacher Carme Farré. It is based around the theory that we work out the muscles in our body regularly, yet the muscles in our face tend to get forgotten. FaceToned® is a natural facial Pilates routine that tones the muscles to lift and rejuvenate your overall facial appearance.
Carme says: “By toning the facial muscles, we start to reduce fine lines and loose skin. The technique focuses on the four most common concerns: the neck, cheeks, eyes and forehead. With FaceToned®, after week four you can start to see the benefits, and after six weeks friends will start asking you: ‘What are you doing and why do you look so well?!’ FaceToned® is all about embracing ageing whilst exercising your face, in the same way we exercise to maintain a healthy, functional body.“
Before you begin cleanse your skin and apply a serum to moisturise and at the end, apply oil to massage. For the massage, I recommend using a Gua Sha or Face Roller as it helps to increase the blood circulation and improve the results of the exercises.
Core Lift – Tones the core, neck and lips
Lengthen the neck, bringing the tip of the tongue between the top lip and teeth, pressing against each other. Keeping the pressure constant, circle the tip of the tongue right, down, left and up four times and then change direction. Perform three times.
Triangle Toner – Tones the ‘youth triangle’ of the cheeks and lower eyelids
Lengthen the neck, place both index fingers next to the outside lower area of the eyes and slightly pull to the sides up towards the temple. Keeping this position, squint and relax as you pulse the lower eyelid eight times, making sure that the upper eyelid does not move. Then keep the squint for eight counts and relax. Perform three times.
Forehead Smoother – Tones the forehead, softening wrinkle lines
Place both index fingers just above eyebrows and hold them firmly in place. Pulse the forehead up and down eight times, while resisting with your index fingers. Then keep the lift for eight counts and relax. Perform three times.
Lower Facelift – Advanced exercise that tones the neck, cheeks and jowls
Lengthen the neck upwards and bring the chin up slightly holding your collarbones with your hands, and slightly pulling down. Now bring the chin forward and slightly up so to hold the top lip with lower teeth, then try to touch the tip of the nose with your lower lip. Now, lift up the corners of the mouth and pulse up and slightly down as if smiling for eight counts. Hold this position for eight counts and then relax. Perform three times.
FaceToned® offers online programmes including free live webinars, and is also available as an app. Using special techniques, demonstrated by Carme, the programme shows how to work deep into the core facial muscles and then more superficial ones surrounding your face, creating natural definition and a more taut and toned appearance.
A recent survey of FaceToned members (5×15 minutes for 8 weeks) found they noticed:
FaceToned® gives structure to the face and tones up the ‘core’ muscles of the face, leading to a more defined jawline, lessening of double chins, fuller cheeks, and smoother ‘laughing lines’ and softer wrinkles in the forehead. After only several workouts, skin will appear glowing, fresh, healthy, young and relaxed. Combining the exercises with the right diet and skincare routine, you will see improvement in muscle tone and volume, and will smooth out the wrinkles above the muscles you have worked out.
There’s no better advocate for her brand than the creator of FaceToned, Carme Farre, who, at 46, looks at least ten years younger than her age belies.
“Exercise is one of the most powerful anti-ageing methods possible for the body, and the same is true for the face,” says Carme. “Your face is the mirror of your soul. Exercising regularly is key, together with using the right beauty products and nutrition.”
FaceToned Facial Fitness was created by the Pilates teacher when she realised that key Pilates principles could be applied to train and tone the facial muscles, the same way we do our bodies.
She believes that by toning the muscles we can start to reduce fine lines and loose skin on the neck, cheeks, eyes and forehead.
But this isn’t about anti-ageing – it’s about embracing the ageing process and looking your best with no need for intervention, as you advance in years. And the best thing? There’s no invasive procedures involved.
The programme, which is online and available via an app, includes live weekly webinars and special techniques demonstrated by Carme. These show you how to work deep into the core facial muscles followed by the more superficial ones surrounding your face, creating natural definition and a more taut and toned appearance.
We recommend that you do your facial workout in privacy as some techniques are not particularly pretty, and others can make you look as though you’re gurning.
But stick with it, because the rewards are numerous – more tone, improved cheek volume, reduction in laughter lines, improvement and definition in the jaw and jowls, and a significant smoothing in forehead wrinkles. Not only that, after several workouts, skin will also appear glowing, fresh, healthy and relaxed.
“After week four you can start to see the benefits, and after six weeks people will start asking you: ‘What are you doing and why do you look so well?’” says Carme.
So if you’re on board with all of that visit www.facetoned.com and choose a monthly or yearly membership. Then download the app -FaceToned: Face Fitness Program (available on iPhone and Android).
Q. I’m noticing my jawline getting a bit lax with the suspicion of jowls forming and a little pouch under my chin. I would love to stop them in their tracks but not keen on anything invasive. Do facial exercises work and would they help?
A. The short answer to your question is yes and yes! Facial exercises do work and they would almost certainly help your neck and jawline as well as toning the lower half of your face. And of course you can extend the workout to the upper half too.
The legendary Eva Fraser was the first practitioner we know of to create a set of exercises that would tone the 40-plus pairs of facial muscles to help counter the downward drift as we age.
Eva actually devised special Instant Face Saver tips for our very first Beauty Bible, published in 1996. You can find Eva’s tips online at here. (Eva’s books are still available on Amazon.)
Technology is on the side of learning and practising facial exercises, which really helps as you can see so much more detail. The FaceToned® Facial Fitness programme is a recent online entry to the arena. Sarah had a taster of FaceToned recently and was impressed.
FaceToned is the brainchild of former banker turned Pilates teacher Carme Farré. Now in her forties and a mother, Carme wanted to devise a programme both for her clients and herself, and to make it available online so that everyone could try it for a moderate subscription. As she says, we devote hours to exercising our bodies but apart from perhaps a spot of facial massage when we apply product, our faces – the first part everyone sees – tend to get left out.
If you think life is too short to stuff a cherry tomato, exercises like repetitively pulsing your tongue against the roof of your mouth and doing micro movements with your lips may not be your bag. But Sarah had to admit, albeit a tad reluctantly, that 15 minutes working out with Carme had a real effect. Of course it didn’t miraculously hitch up facial sags and bags but the workout did leave her with a bright, pink-y complexion, wide-open eyes, a feeling of muscles coming alive and a general air of uplift.
Before launching online this spring, Carme had been teaching and refining her FaceToned programme with clients for five years. She promises that, if you exercise regularly for 15 minutes three to four times a week using the online modules, you’ll start seeing real benefits after four weeks. Many subscribers actually choose to practise up to six times a week. In a survey of 33 women who signed up for the FaceToned online programme, 28 said they found it fun and intend to complete the course. Subscribers are also positive about the live weekly webinars.
In Carme’s experience, the majority of clients using the FaceToned method regularly notice the following improvements after eight weeks:
• Improvement and definition in the jaw and jowls (which is the number one concern, she says)
• A more toned and defined face overall with tauter skin
• More volume in cheeks
• Some reduction of lines and wrinkles on forehead and laugh lines around the eyes.
And finally watch that space, ie the website, because a FaceToned app will be launching in October this year.
How to get rid of dark circles and bags under eyes? It’s an age old problem! One minute we were feeling relatively fresh faced and the next, we’re peering into the bathroom mirror wondering how to get rid of the tell tale signs of sleepless nights and years passing that’s written all over our faces.
Everywhere you turn there’s a new ‘miracle’ product claiming to eradicate these pesky signs of ageing for good – but with whopping great price tags and no guaranteed results, wouldn’t it be nice to try some more natural alternatives?
Luckily there’s a whole host of natural tips and tricks that promise to seriously reduce bags under your eyes and dark circles, so instead of reaching straight for that concealer why not give on a go?
The reason we get dark shadows and eye bags has a lot to do with our lifestyles, so detecting what the causes of our eye woes are can help us to banish them from our faces for good.
We can’t express how important a good night’s sleep is for a whole multitude of reasons, but there really is such a thing as beauty sleep. A lack of shut eye can make the skin appear pale and reduces circulation, which is why dark circles appear. Everyone’s different so figure out how much sleep you need and stick to it – it’ll work wonders for your peepers! It’s also important to completely remove all make up (with a clean flannel) as leaving eye make up residue can cause ageing.
Carme Farré, the founder of FaceToned® explains: ‘The idea that a good night’s sleep can make you look bright eyed and fresh as a daisy isn’t just a saying – beauty sleep is a real thing! Whether due to insomnia or simply a late night, a lack of sleep can cause circles under your eyes to appear or become more prominent. This happens because lack of sleep tends to cause the blood vessels under the thin skin of the eyes to dilate, creating a dark tint. Most adults should aim to get between seven and eight hours of sleep each night.’
Hands up who’s guilty of not drinking the recommended amount of water every day? Yep, us too. But drinking enough water is so important, especially when it comes to anti-ageing. Every organ in the body needs water and our skin is no exception, as it’s cells depend on water to function efficiently and repair damage. Noella Gabriel, who is in charge of treatments and product development at Elemis, told the Express ‘The drier and more dehydrated the skin is, the more it emphasises existing lines, so things can look much worse than they are.’ Aim to drink 1.6 litres of fluid a day and you’ll really feel the benefits.
Carme adds that water makes up about 60 percent of your body weight. ‘Dehydration is a common cause of dark circles under your eyes. When your body is not receiving the proper amount of water, the skin beneath your eyes begins to look dull and your eyes look sunken into the eye sockets which causes dark shadows to appear. Make sure you are always hydrated as this can help the skin to look more plump, and water also helps to flush out the toxins from your system and reduces the amount of salt concentration in and around the eye area.’
Who’d have thought that being allergic to something could be having an unwanted affect on our eye bags and circles? Allergies like hay fever are actually a common cause of skin discoloration under the eyes, and food allergies in particular could cause constant puffiness. Make sure you track down the cause of your allergy and tackle it, and you’ll soon notice an improvement in your eyes.
Some women swear by a blend of baking soda and water, mixed to ‘sugar syrup consistency’, to banish their dark circles. Beauty blogger Darshika Patel put the theory to the test, saying that it should ‘leave your bags diminished and your under-eye circles improved’.
To try it yourself, mix together baking soda and a small amount of water to form a paste, allow this to dry under the eyes for 5-10 minutes, then wash it away with a damp cloth. Darshika adds that your eyes may feel tight after the treatment, but ‘that’s good because it is tightening the skin around the eyes’.
Carme Farré explains that there are a number of facial exercises that you can do to help with dark circles.
‘It is proven that exercising helps to combat stress and it also reduces the production of cortisol which can form dark circles around the eyes,’ she says. ‘Exercising your face also helps to improve blood circulation to the skin which has a positive impact on the pigmentation and puffiness of the eyes.’
Carme recommends these two exercises in particular to target dark circles: ‘Firstly, the basic FaceToned® exercise ‘Triangle Toner’, which tones the ‘youth triangle’ of the cheeks and lower eyelids and activates the blood flow in the lower eyelids and cheeks. To do, lengthen the neck, place both index fingers next to the outside lower area of the eyes and slightly pull to the sides up towards the temple. Keeping this position, squint and relax as you pulse the lower eyelid eight times, making sure that the upper eyelid does not move. Then keep the squint for eight counts and relax. Perform three times.
No, we’re not talking some fancy herbal tea here. Good old fashioned caffeinated tea has long been used as a remedy of eye puffiness thanks to its mild diuretic properties and natural tannins. Carme recommends putting your used tea bag in the fridge or letting it cool down for half an hour.
‘Then place the tea bag over your eyes for 10-15 minutes. If you’re looking for that extra oomph, ensure you’re using a caffeinated tea bag.’
Ok yes this is a little unusual, but bear with us! ‘Slices of refrigerated potato work as a fantastic natural remedy to get rid of under eye puffiness. The enzymes and the astringent properties help reduce inflammation and help tighten the skin,’ reveals Carme.
Pop a couple of slices under your eyes to help reduce dark shadows without forking out a fortune on expensive creams. Apply them as cold as you can to combat puffiness at the same time.
An oldie but a goodie, cold cucumber slices have long been known for the wonders they work on tired, puffy eyes in desperate need of freshening up. Place a slice over each eye, making sure it covers the darkened area too. Do this daily and lie down for around 10-15 minutes. The cucumber will get to work on the skin around your eyes and the act of taking time for yourself will help alleviate eye bag-causing stress, too!
Rose water is said to be a great natural product for diminishing the appearance of dark circles, as well as puffiness and wrinkles around the eyes. Not only is it soothing for irritated, stressed out eyes, it’s hydrating properties mean it’s able to restore the pH balance of the skin. This helps to remove dark pigmentation, while its anti–oxidant properties help to strengthen the skin cells and regenerate the tissues under the eyes.
To enjoy the magic of rose water, take a bowl and add 2 tablespoons of cold milk and 2 tablespoons of cold rose water in it. ‘Dab a cotton ball into the mixture and leave it for about 20-25 minutes. Apply the mixture under your eyes and allow it to stay for some time,’ says Carme.
Thanks to its anti–inflammatory properties, almond oil can help to diminish pesky dark circles and under eye bags. It has great source of vitamin K that improves the blood clotting that in turn results in decrease in the appearance of dark circles and other skin discoloration around the eyes. Apply a small amount of your dark circles before you go to bed, and then wash off with cold water in the morning.