Being unhappy with your body sucks. I know, I’ve been there.
But while it’s easy to cover yourself up with baggy clothes and long sleeves, there’s one thing you can’t hide when you’re feeling down about your appearance:
Chubby cheeks, puffy eyes, and double chins stick out like a sore thumb to us when we look in the mirror, and they make us extremely self conscious.
If you want to get rid of chubby cheeks in a day, well, I’d be lying if I said you could make them magically go away instantly. But there are some concrete, immediate steps you can take RIGHT NOW to wake up tomorrow feeling better about your face:
- Get a good night’s sleep
- Drink lots of water
- Start your diet
Step 1: Get a good night’s sleep.
You probably know this firsthand, but the science backs it up as well: Sleep deprivation can have a big impact on our facial appearance.
A lot of things happen to our face when we’re tired: Our eyes have dark circles under them, our face appears more wrinkled, and we look more fatigued.
This is not where you want to be if you’re looking for a youthful, exuberant face.
To improve your chubby cheeks in a single day, start by getting a full night’s sleep. Go to bed early if your wake up time isn’t flexible. Limit your screen time and alcohol before bed to ensure you fall asleep quickly and deeply. There are also plenty of natural sleep aids that might help, though your mileage may vary.
Bonus Tip: Sleep with your head propped up or slightly elevated to prevent liquid from pooling under your eyes and in your cheek area in the morning.
Step 2: Drink lots of water.
Some of the puffiness you’re experiencing in your cheeks and face may not actually be fat. It might be water weight.
Yes, our body loves to store a portion of its water reserves in the most visible area possible. How thoughtful of it!
Here’s the confusing part: Water retention in your face usually isn’t a sign that you’ve had too much water. It’s a sign that you’ve had too little.
Facial bloating and puffiness is actually a sign of dehydration. Your body worries that water is scarce and starts to store it for later, right in plain view of everyone. (It can also be caused by too much added salt and sodium in your diet, which dries us out and makes our body cling to its water reserves.)
To wake up tomorrow with less chubby cheeks, drink plenty of water throughout the day and cut out high salt foods. You might notice a near-immediate improvement in your complexion and puffiness.
Bonus Tip: Eat some high potassium foods like bananas. Potassium is kind of the anti-sodium and helps regulate its effects inside the body.
Step 3: Start your diet. Right now. Today. No excuses.
OK, so you’ve slept well, you’ve hydrated, and your cheeks are still chubby.
Now we know that it’s most likely due to excess body fat. And that is going to take time and commitment to improve.
The good news? If you start eating a little cleaner, and at a moderate calorie deficit, you’ll feel better ALMOST immediately. In my experience, facial puffiness and fat is some of the first stuff to go when you get your nutrition in line.
Multiply your bodyweight in pounds times 12. That’s a good rough start for how many calories you should be getting in a day for safe, consistent weight loss. (Ex: A 180lb man would shoot for around 2100 calories per day.)
Though that’s really just the beginning, and if you want to see great results you should have a full nutrition plan and be getting regular exercise.
(I can recommend some amazing workout and nutrition programs to get you started. I lost over 15 pounds of pure fat recently myself using these!)
Bonus Tip: Your body needs a healthy balance of carbs, fat, and protein to thrive. But if you temporarily limit your carb intake, you can shed some extra water weight fast and get a great leaning-out effect. Just don’t go too low for too long.
Can you lose weight from just your face?
What if you’re pretty happy with the way you look overall, you just want to have a leaner face and a chiseled jawline?
Or maybe you just want to lose fat from your face FIRST so you get the immediate benefit of being noticably slimmer.
Well, unfortunately, the answer is that spot-reducing fat has been mostly proven to be a total myth.
In other words, no amount of sit-ups or crunches will give you a flat stomach and burn off your belly fat.
Doing bicep curls won’t tone your arms all by themselves.
And in the same way, doing facial exercises and jaw-toning work isn’t going to do a heck of a lot!
The only way to slim down any part of your body is to lower your bodyfat percentage overall.
You do that through smart eating and exercise, the way I’ve described above.
However, there are some things you can do to make your face APPEAR leaner and make your cheeks look less puffy, even if it’s all kind of an illusion:
Keep your hair neatly trimmed
For guys especially, hair styles with shorter sides and longer on the top can make your face look longer and leaner, even if you haven’t lost any weight,
Grow a (neatly trimmed) beard
Beards are so helpful for hiding a little bit of facial fat!
(Sorry ladies and guys who can’t grow facial hair)
They key is to keep it neatly trimmed at or just below the jawline, and keep the length relatively uniform. If it gets too bushy and unkempt, it will have the opposite effect of making your face look puffier and more bloated.
Build some muscle
If you’ve been dieting for a while or just want to take a different approach, sometimes your face will end up looking leaner in comparison to your body when you pack on a little more size.
It sounds counterintuitive, but a smart lean bulk where you build muscle and minimize fat gain can actually improve your body composition and make you look leaner, even if you’ve actually gained a small amount of fat.
Bonus tip: Training your neck directly and growing your neck muscles, though it sounds odd, can have a slimmin effect on your face.
You can’t completely get rid of all of your facial fat in one day. But you can definitely make measurable progress.
Start getting more sleep if possible. Put down the diet sodas and coffees in favor of more water for better hydration. And clean up your diet and get yourself on the path to overall fat loss.
You’ll see some improvement almost immediately. But if you’re able to stick with this general plan, you’ll see a world of difference in just a few weeks.
Don’t forget to check out my workout program comparison guide to find the perfect routine.