Seeing a double chin in the mirror is never a nice sight, and it’s usually a reminder that you need to shed a few pounds.
But the common condition can be caused by a number of factors, not just weight gain.
A double chin occurs when a layer of fat around your neck sags.
When it sags it causes a wrinkle, which gives the illusion of having two chins.
But the fact is, you do not have to be overweight for this to happen to you.
Some people are genetically predisposed to a double chin, meaning they have a family history of skin with little elasticity.
If the skin loses its elasticity it cannot hold the fat around the chin firmly.
A double chin can also happen as you age and you begin to lose muscle.
When you start to lose muscle your chin weakens and the skin around it becomes looser.
Another reason your skin might sag is posture.
A bad posture can also weaken the muscles around the neck and the chin.
This has the same effect as ageing on the fat around your neck.
But don’t worry if you fear you’re at risk, there are exercises you can do to strengthen your neck muscles.
But be sure to always warm up your neck and jaw muscles first to avoid injury.
You can do this by rotating your neck in a circular motion, followed by the same warm up for the jaw.
# Pucker up
Similar to whistling at the ceiling, this exercise will help strengthen your neck.
This exercise can be done standing.
Pout your lips as if to kiss the sky and stretch them as far away from the face as possible.
Your neck muscles should feel flexed but not painful.
You should hold this for five to 20 seconds and repeat 10 to 15 times.
This is another effective way to strengthen the jaw and neck muscles.
It can be done seated or standing.
Simply stick the bottom lip out as far as possible to form a pouting face, as if taking a selfie.
Hold this position for three seconds, then begin to tilt your head towards your chest while keeping your lower lip out.
Hold for another three seconds.
You should aim to do this 10 to 20 times.
# Whistle at the ceiling
It sounds a little odd, but stretching your head up to whistle at the ceiling can help strengthen your muscles.
Tilt the head back and look at the ceiling while sitting, close your lips into the whistling position (you should feel the muscles on the side of your neck contract), then hold for 10 to 20 seconds.
In one sitting you should aim to do about ten reps.
# Use a ball
Tools are always useful to get the most out of exercise.
For this, you will need a five to 10cm ball to hand.
It might be worth keeping one in your desk drawer so you can exercise during breaks.
Ensure you are sitting with a straight back and relaxed shoulders then place the ball under the chin.
Push down against the ball with your chin in a steady motion.
Try to repeat this between 10 to 30 times each time you do it.
# Chew gum
Not only is chewing gum a small exercise for the facial muscles, it can also help you shed those extra pounds to rid of your double chin.
People who chewed gum felt more satisfied after their meal and were less likely to snack.
By resisting the urge to snack you’re reducing the number of calories in the diet which will help you lose the fat-causing your double chin.