With more than three years of fit crashing under my belt, it’s a rare day to find something completely new and different to try.
But I have to hand it to you New York City – you’ve done it again.
A legitimate cardio + strength training workout for the muscles in your mug.
A face fit crash, if you will.
What // FaceLove Fitness combines facial massage, high tech touch, and special exercises to destress and energize the muscles in your face. Offerings include 15 or 30 minute workouts custom built to meet your specific needs and facial fitness goals.
Where // Currently located in a cozy, relaxing office at WeWork on 85 Broad Street, 18th Floor. Expect a calming neutral palate of fluffy pillows and plush blankets with soft music, big leafy plants, and beautiful accessories. The setting feels like West Elm meets beauty editor’s office.
Who // Co-founder Rachel Lang was my personal trainer for this session. She was the most adorable facial fitness pro, answered all of my crazy questions (what does that thing do?!), and made me feel right at home.
Why // You go to the gym to keep your body healthy and strong. Why not do the same for your face? Exercising the face muscles helps to create more mass (hint: less wrinkles), strengthens the fiber and connective tissues, and increases elasticity, giving your face a toned, taught look. The amazing face massage you’ll get during your session isn’t just icing on the cake, either – the increased blood flow to the muscles helps in cellular regeneration and stress relief. You’ll feel good + look good. Win win.
How // Like any workout, my session consisted of a few key elements: a warm up, a cardio segment, a strength session, and a cool down.
- Warm up: I knew I was going to fall in love with this workout from the very first minute. Rachel began by waking up my facial muscles with an amazing neck, back, and scalp massage. To die for. After sitting at a computer all day, it felt amazing to have someone pull your spine into alignment, massage your scalp, head, and neck, and then deliver some aromatherapy to help set the mood. I was already smitten. What next?
- Cardio: Also known as the treadmill for your face. Rachel used small hand rollers all over my face to increase blood flow and get things heated up. They kind of looked like rolling meat tenderizers…but with cute pink handles and not at all painful. I was really surprised at how noticeably different my face felt after this crazy routine was finished. Ready to work!
- Strength: Okay, so here is where the real magic happens. The strength segment involved a number of assisted “weighted” exercises for the main muscle groups in your face: cheeks, eyes, forehead, neck. Many of them involved making various funny faces while Rachel provided gentle resistance to the targeted area with her hands. We also incorporated a resistance band (yep, just like in the gym!) and creative use of a Pilates ring just under the chin to really get deep into the neck and jawline. I wonder how many weird looks I’ll get at the real gym when I park myself in front of a mirror with a Pilates ring doing chin crunches and neck burpees. #sorrynotsorry
- Cool down: After your face has been through the gauntlet of exercises and massage, it deserves a few moments to cool down and stretch. Rachel rolled soft stress balls over cheeks, forehead, and eyes (aka: foam rolling your face) and followed with icy-cold jade rollers straight from the fridge to help everything settle down and cool off. Note to self: get some of these to use at home in the morning instead of hitting snooze five more times. After another few moments of blissful neck, back, and face massage, I was given a facial mist, some aromatherapy, and vitamin-infused lip balm.
How much // 15-minute session is $30. I have treated to a signature “FaceLove” 30-minute session, which is $50.
Things to note //
- This may be the only workout on Earth where you won’t break a sweat.
- The lotion and sprays used may make your hair look a bit oily and tussled upon leaving. I didn’t mind it at all, but if you’re going back to the office or out for the evening, you may want to bring a spot of dry shampoo to get things back into tip-top shape.
- I don’t wear enough makeup for smudging or removal to be an issue, but know that your face will be grabbed, massaged, and gently pulled. Whatever you have on will most likely come off. Plan accordingly.
- You will get the eyebrow massage of your life and immediately wonder where that small bliss has been hiding all your life.
- The entire process feels really, really good. Addictively good. For instance, true story: I’m currently searching the Internet for face tenderizers + jade rollers to use at home.
Will I go back // Yes. But in all honesty, New York isn’t a cheap place and my health and wellness budget isn’t bottomless. When it does allow for a little extra pampering, you can bet I’ll be first in line to sit back in that cozy chair with Rachel for another round of facial fit crashing.
Why? Well, let’s be real. While I’m thankful that almost-thirty is treating my skin well, I realize it’s all about preventative action and well rounded, no-nonsense care. The time to cut corners has long passed. So I’ve recently started to invest in a more intensive face + skin routine with regular facials and use of organic creams and suds. A few workouts at FaceLove Fitness seem like the perfect way to compliment my attempts to keep my mug as fresh-faced and glowy as possible – the natural way. I would love to go back at least a few more times so I can learn the techniques to do at home.