Seeing a double chin in the mirror may be a sign of weight
gain or obesity, but that is not always the case.
There are many exercises that target the fat under the chin and
neck. There are also other treatments that can be used to
support these activities.
What causes a double chin?
A double chin can be caused by a number of factors,
including age, diet, and genetics.
A few different factors combine in the body to create a double
chin. Understanding these factors may help with understanding
ways to get rid of the double chin itself.
The skin can start to lose its elasticity as the body ages,
which can lead to the appearance of extra or saggy skin that
may contribute to a double chin.
Diet and weight
While weight gain is not always the cause of a double chin,
it can contribute to it. A diet high in calories, processed foods, and unhealthful fats
may influence weight gain and a double chin as well.
Genes may play a role in people developing a double chin.
Anyone with a family history of skin with little elasticity or
double chins might be more likely to develop one themselves.
Poor posture can weaken the muscles of the neck and chin. This
may contribute to a double chin over time, as the surrounding
skin loses its elasticity when the muscles are not used.
Exercises that target a double chin
There are many simple exercises for a double chin.
While there is little scientific research on the effect of
these exercises, they target the muscles of the neck and face.
Working these muscles could help burn fat in these areas, and
may be a crucial part of getting rid of a double chin.
Around the world (warm up)
As with any exercise routine, it is important to warm up the
muscles to avoid injury. To warm up the neck, gently rotate the
head forward and down and then back and up using a clockwise,
circular motion. After a few rotations, reverse the direction.
The same circular motion is used to stretch the jaw. Gently
extend the jaw left, then forward, then right, and then back,
holding each position for a second or two. Now the muscles are
warmed and ready for exercise.
Whistle at the ceiling
This exercise is great for strengthening the muscles and giving
the neck a break during time spent at the desk. Sit with a
straight back and relaxed shoulders.
Tilt the head back to look at the ceiling. From this position,
close the lips into the position used while whistling. The lips
should be relaxed but held tight enough to feel a contraction
on both sides of the neck.
Hold this position for 10 to 20 seconds depending on the
comfort level of the individual. Ten repetitions of this
exercise are usually enough for one sitting.
Kiss the sky
In this exercise, try to get the lips as far from the face
This exercise is similar to the previous one, with a few
Stand straight and tall with the arms and shoulders loose and
relaxed. Tilt the head back to look at the ceiling. Pucker the
lips and try to kiss the sky, extending them as far away from
the face as possible.
When done correctly, the muscles throughout the neck and chin
should feel flexed but comfortable. Hold this position for 5 to
20 seconds and then relax. Repeat 10 to 15 times per set.
The ball squeeze
Keeping an exercise tool on hand is an excellent way to help
some people remember to do their exercises.
For neck exercises, it may help to keep a ball somewhere near
the desk, bed, or in a place where a person will do the
exercises. The size of the ball can range from 5 to 10 inches
based on personal comfort and should be easy to squeeze.
The ball squeeze is done best from a seated position with a
straight back and relaxed shoulders.
Place the ball under the chin. Use the chin to push down
against the ball in a steady, firm motion. This can be repeated
10 to 30 times during each sitting.
The pouting stretch
Another effective way to target the muscles in the chin and
neck is to do a pouting stretch.
Standing or seated, stick the bottom lip out as far as possible
to form a pouting face. Hold the position for 3 seconds. With
the lip still in full pout, use the muscles of the neck to tilt
the chin towards the chest without moving the upper back.
Hold this position for 3 seconds. Relax the muscles and start
again. Repeat 10 to 20 times or until the neck feels the
Chewing gum may not seem like much, but it may be useful for
people looking to get rid of a double chin in multiple ways.
A study posted to the journal Appetite
found that individuals who chew gum after a meal may feel more
satisfied with what they have eaten. This makes them less
likely to reach for additional snacks. Chewing gum can help
people who are losing weight to reduce the number of calories
in their diet.
This exercise should mirror a lion’s yawn, with the tongue
extending as far as possible.
Chewing gum is a minor workout for the muscles of the face,
especially the jaw. Regular gum chewing may contribute to an
overall loss of fat in the chin though it probably will not do
much by itself.
The lion’s yawn
The point of this exercise is to open the mouth wide while
sticking the tongue out as far as possible, much like a yawning
lion. It can be a great exercise to strengthen many muscles in
the chin, neck, and face.
Sit or stand with a relaxed posture. Open the mouth as wide as
possible while extending the tongue out as far as it will go.
When done correctly, the muscles of the neck, chin, and jaw
Push the tongue out for 10 seconds and relax. Repeat this
process 10 times and move on to another exercise.
Other treatments for a double chin
In addition to exercises, people often turn to additional
treatments for their double chin as well.
Many face masks are available that can help tighten the skin
and reduce the appearance of a double chin.
Glycerin masks and coffee or green tea masks may help support the efforts of
exercises. A daily mask of egg whites, honey, and lemon juice
also provides a reduction in fat around the chin for some
A natural diet may help reduce the appearance of a double chin,
especially if it is caused by weight gain. Reducing the number
of calories consumed each day helps some people.
Drinking plenty of water removes more fat from the body.
A study posted to the journal
Obesity found that people who drank water before meals
lost more weight than those who did not.
Water and water-rich foods, such as melons and cucumbers may
also help remove more toxins from the body.
Some people opt for invasive procedures to fix a double chin.
There are three main procedures for treating a double chin:
Mesotherapy: Mesotherapy involves injecting
compounds into the chin that dissolve fat. The process can
take up to 6 months and may require over 100
injections in some people. If done incorrectly, it may cause
Liposculpting: Liposculpture treats a double
chin by removing the fat through suction or with a laser.
Liposcultping will not create more elasticity in the skin; it
will only remove fat.
Kybella: This drug is approved by the United States Food and
Drug Administration (FDA). A single treatment involves up to
50 injections of the drug into the fat tissue. A person may
have up to six individual treatments, which they must have
These options may cause side effects such as swelling,
bruising, or pain. The double chin may still come back if the
lifestyle does not change to maintain it.
Written by Jon Johnson