5 exercises to shrink a double chin, according to an expert

Male chin and jawline, closeup of unshaven man's face, selective focus double chin
An expert says there are five exercises you can do to get rid of a double chin. (Getty Images)

A double chin is caused by a layer of fat, known as submental fat, forming under the chin.

While a double chin is often associated with weight gain, it can also be caused by genetics, and loose skin as we age. This ageing can be exacerbated by poor diet choices, and lifestyle choices such as smoking and prolonged sun exposure.

But, if you have one, take solace in the fact that you’re not alone. In fact, it is estimated that around 70% of adults have a double chin.

Despite not being harmful to your health, it is understandable if you want to try to get rid of it. Weight loss is one way to see a reduction, but a fitness expert says that there are several specific exercises you can do to help as well – and that you need to do these at least three times a week for the best results.

Most chin-targeted exercises can be done while sitting down, be it in front of your computer in the office, on your commute home, or while you’re watching telly.

"To do this exercise, you need to sit or stand comfortably with your spine straight before tilting your head back and looking up toward the ceiling," Leon Bolmeer, director of Geezer’s Boxing, says.

"Now, pucker your lips as if you're kissing the ceiling, hold this position for 5-10 seconds, and then relax. Repeat this movement 10-15 times, as this exercise helps tone the muscles in your chin and neck."

Fancy having a stronger jawline? While genetics often pre-determine what our jaws look like, Bolmeer suggests practicing ‘jaw juts’ to help give it some more definition.

"While sitting or standing, simply tilt your head back and look towards the ceiling," he says. "After you have done that, move your lower jaw forward to feel a stretch under the chin. Hold this position for a few seconds and then relax. Repeat 10-15 times."

Practicing jaw juts could create a stronger jaw. (Getty Images)
Practicing jaw juts could create a stronger jaw. (Getty Images)

“This exercise may seem a little obscure, and it’s probably best to do it in private, but it’s an effective way of reducing your double chin,” Bolmeer says.

"To perform a tongue stretch, sit comfortably with your back straight, and stick your tongue out as far as you can. Then, try to touch your chin with your tongue, hold this position for 5-10 seconds, then relax. Repeat this exercise 10-15 times. This exercise works on the muscles underneath the chin."

The most important thing to remember when performing a neck roll is to keep your spine straight.

"Slowly rotate your head in a circular motion, moving from one shoulder to the other, and perform 10 rotations clockwise and then 10 rotations counterclockwise," Bolmeer explains.

"Neck rolls help stretch and strengthen the neck muscles, further reducing your double chin and toning that area of your face."

To do this exercise, Bolmeer says you need to sit or stand with your mouth slightly open, and to drop your jaw as far down as you can.

"Next, move your jaw up and down as if you are trying to scoop something upwards," he adds.

"Repeat this movement 10-15 times. This exercise targets the platysma muscle, which can help reduce sagging under the chin."