A double chin or "neck fat" is nothing to be embarrassed about, but if it bothers you, there are some things you can do to minimize its appearance. First, consider what might be causing the appearance of a double chin. As we age, our skin starts to lose elasticity, and gravity takes advantage, possibly causing a double chin. Another factor is weight fluctuations. “The skin, when well maintained, is elastic, but with constant weight gain and weight loss, it can become stretched and lax,” says Jean-Louis Sebagh, MD.
Genetics may also play a part, so if a double chin runs in your family, then you’re more likely to develop one yourself. It is important to remember that no matter what your body looks like, you are absolutely beautiful and should love every aspect of yourself. That being said, there are plenty of ways to prevent a double chin if it's what you want, whether it's through face yoga and targeted skincare products or more invasive treatments.
Keep scrolling for our guide to preventing or minimizing an existing double chin.
Try Daily Facial Yoga
Sebagh is right when he says prevention is key, and face yoga may help to keep the chin area taut. We called on Inge Theron, founder of FaceGym, to share three facial exercises that can help prevent the onset of a double chin. “If you can’t make it to FaceGym, there are at-home exercises you can do. Some simple chin exercises performed in the morning and evening every day will help, but you have to be consistent with them,” says Theron.
She suggests this simple routine called the chin press-up, in which you make a V with your hand, rest your chin there, pull your lips over your top teeth, hold for five seconds, and repeat. Then, move your hands to either side of your chin, with the length of your fingers covering your ears, and make the sound “eeeee” with your mouth. Put your ring fingers inside your mouth on either side, pull the skin to the side, and use your jaw muscles to bring the fingers back in to touch your teeth. Repeat the movements 10 times.
Apply Serum and Moisturizer Correctly
Try applying your face serum and moisturizer to your neck using an upward sweeping motion. If your usual product is formulated to increase collagen production, then this might help. If you’re already doing this and your double chin isn’t budging, then it’s worth incorporating some products into your routine that zero in on this specific area.
Use a Handheld Massage Tool
For a more long-term result at home, try the Prai Ageless Throat Ionic Device and Serum; the handheld tool massages the area and drives the product deep down into the skin. The serum contains hematite extract meant to boost collagen production and goldenrod extract meant to shield the skin from free radicals that can weaken the skin over time. According to customer reviews, you may notice a difference in just seven days.
Cathy Kangas, Prai Beauty CEO and founder, explains, “Both the device and serum have a positive charge, so when used together, the ionic serum is pushed deeper into the skin to attack double chins, droopy jowls and turkey neck. All it takes is 45 seconds once a day. Simply apply the serum from the décolletage up over the chin, and gently glide the device in upward strokes.”
Give Yourself a Lymphatic Drainage Massage
A lymphatic drainage massage when applying your products at home can help. Sebagh's in-house facialist, Tine Hagelquist, offers up the following instructions for applying your serum or moisturizer:
"Knead and pinch your jawline. Starting from the chin, move with upward movements toward the earlobe. Use your index and middle fingers, like you are cutting with a pair of scissors, pinching and kneading with firm movements. It has to be firm. Do this both morning and evening. Next, tap with the back of your hand under your chin, then poke your tongue out as far as you can toward the tip of your nose. Hold this for 10 seconds, then press your tongue up against the roof of your mouth, again hold for 10 seconds. This a very effective facial exercise to strengthen jaw and neck muscles."
Practice Gua Sha
Another way to give yourself a lymphatic massage is with a gua sha tool. Roll it along the jawline and rest of your face, and not only might it contour your features, but it also releases stored tension in your facial muscles.
Explore Non-Invasive Treatments
Tried targeted products, massage, and face yoga, but are still looking? There are in-clinic treatments that can provide impressive results, and not all of them involve surgery. "Radio frequency is amazing for facial fat burning, double chin reduction, lifting, and sculpting," says Theron "The benefits are not only a sharper jawline but also increased skin tightening and collagen production, which helps your overall complexion and minimizes lines."
You can also try Ultralift, another non-invasive treatment offered at Sebagh's clinic. "It delivers ultrasound waves and obtains great results for lifting, tightening and firming," he explains. "This treatment can be combined with Sculpt Freeze to freeze the stubborn fat cells, which are then gradually (over several months) eliminated."
If you've done it all and you're still not seeing the results you want, there's always Botox. Injectables of many kinds can change the shape of your face without you going under the knife, and the results can be long-lasting. Aesthetic doctor David Jack, MD, of Dr. David Jack recommends the Nefertiti Lift. "There is a superficial muscle that forms a sheet over the whole neck and pulls down on the jowls of the face when grimacing," he says. "Botox can be used to relax the pull of this muscle and relax the tension it creates on the jawline and the area under the chin, providing a subtle lifting effect. This is good for early cases where there are minimal jowls and double chin!"
Other non-Botox injectables include carboxytherapy, which Jack explains "involves injections of carbon dioxide gas under the surface of the skin into the fat," and Kybella, currently the only FDA-approved injectable specifically for the chin area. ENT and plastic surgeon Kambiz Golchin notes, "This new fat-dissolving injection provides permanent results, which are extremely impressive and give the patient a much more defined jawline. Usually, patients will require two to six treatments spaced four to six weeks apart, but this would all be decided upon consultation."
Go the Liposuction Route
Liposuction can eradicate a double chin, but it is invasive. "Liposuction of the neck is a surgical procedure I provide for my patients who have excess fat where a nonsurgical option wouldn't benefit them entirely," explains Golchin. "This surgery enables me to remove the patient's fat and sculpt a natural contour to the chin and neck.”
Alam M, Walter AJ, Geisler A, et al. Association of facial exercise with the appearance of aging. JAMA Dermatology. 2018;154(3):365-367.
de Araújo AR, Soares VPC, da Silva FS, Moreira T da S. Radiofrequency for the treatment of skin laxity: mith or truth. An Bras Dermatol. 2015;90(5):707-721.
Mess SA. Lower face rejuvenation with injections: botox, juvederm, and kybella for marionette lines and jowls. Plast Reconstr Surg Glob Open. 2017;5(11):e1551.