Face Yoga with Koko is a business that promotes the reduction of facial wrinkles and signs of aging like crow’s feet and smile lines. It was founded by Koko Hayashi, who will appear on Shark Tank in the hopes that investors will help expand her business’ visibility.
Face Yoga is described as a series of facial exercises that help strengthen muscles and improve blood circulation to the face. It’s often pitched as a healthy alternative to things like botox and plastic surgery. Read on to learn more about Koko, her background, and how she plans to get the attention of Shark Tank investors.
1. Face Yoga Wakes Up Sleeping Facial Muscles to Lift Up Excess Skin
Face Yoga with Koko was founded in 2016. Koko explained the way that Face Yoga works during an interview with Voyage L.A. “Face Yoga with Koko offers Face Yoga, as a natural solution to regain your youthful appearance,” she revealed. “Face Yoga wakes up the sleeping muscles in the face to lift up your skin, and relax over-working muscles for wrinkle reduction. We teach private sessions, group session, in-person or online. Also, our YouTube introduces countless exercises [for] free.”
Some techniques include blowing “raspberries” not only just with the lips, but with the cheeks as well. “The bigger vibration is better for relaxing facial muscles,” Koko told Good Housekeeping. “Lip muscles are a core muscle for the face. By relaxing these muscles, other muscles are relaxed too.” Koko said that you could either do it three times a day “or whenever you feel stressed.
Another technique involves “smoothing” the smile lines on your face. The idea behind this one involves pushing your tongue down inside your mouth and make a tiny circle on the labial line of the cheek. “If you don’t smile, you’re not going to develop cheek muscle,” Koko explained. “Instead, tackle smile lines by “breaking down the tension in the muscle from the inside out by using the tongue.” It costs $200 for a private session.
2. Koko Was Inspired to Start Face Yoga After a Failed Plastic Surgery
Koko said that a failed plastic surgery was what led to her taking up face yoga. “At the age of 27, I had plastic surgery failure,” she told Voyage L.A. “I was advised to add implant in the chin and did it because the doctor told me that I can have it removed if I don’t like it. I didn’t like it, so had it removed, but my chin is never the same as before.”
“It looks distorted a little and left something like a car accident scar,” Koko added. “That’s when I realized that I should have pursue natural solution, such as Face Yoga! In Japan, there are many face exercises instructors, so it was natural for me to start doing it. As I see good result personally, I started teaching since 2018, and have already gained celebrity clients.”
Koko was born in Tokyo, Japan, where Face Yoga is a common practice. She moved to the United States when she was 37, intent on bringing the technique stateside. “I moved to the States by myself in 2016 and it’s very difficult to start a business in a foreign country,” she admitted. “Don’t easily do that, haha, unless you know someone you can trust…”
3. Some of Her Celebrity Clients Include Kim & Kourtney Kardashian
Koko earned her biggest co-sign to date when she appeared on the reality series Keeping Up With the Kardashians. During her appearance, she taught Kim, Khloe and Kourtney Kardashian, as well as Kourtney’s ex-husband Scott Disick.
“When I was teaching the Kardashians, I showed some of the more dramatic positions for TV purposes,” Koko told Health. “Typically, in one-on-one sessions, I don’t have people make sounds while they’re moving through the positions, but in bigger classes or group settings, it’s more enjoyable for people to add noises to create bigger movements.”
“It takes time to see results; it’s not like Botox,” Koko added. “But if you do it on a regular basis, you should be able to see some results in a couple of weeks to months, depending on how often you do it… The best part about face yoga is that you can take it anywhere. You can do it at work or while walking your dog, which makes it easy to work into your daily routine.”
4. Koko Wants to Combat the Stigma Against Aging for Models
In addition to her work with Face Yoga, Koko is a Los Angeles model. During an interview with Model Citizen Magazine, she talked about her two professions, and what she hopes to achieve by mixing them. “I want to be a model that shows age is just a number,” she explained. “Thru [sic] my beauty business, I introduce Japanese beauty tips including face yoga, so I want to be a model to inspire that you should enjoy ageing.”
Koko also talked about her modeling career, and how her facial techniques have allowed to stand out from her peers. “I can do some interesting facial expressions due to my face yoga teaching experience, and also posing ideas from Japanese models,” she said. “It’s also exciting to come up with how to use objects on the spot. An entire body shot is challenging as I am petite, so always am seeking how to look taller.”
Koko also talked to NBC News about the importance of reducing stress and being more patient in day-to-day activities. “Taking time, instead of rushing, is very important for skincare. The Japanese believe that quick results don’t last, but slow results last for a long time,” she reasoned. “Botox gives you instant results, but if we can control our facial muscles to cause less wrinkles and sagging, it’s much better, as it’s natural and long lasting. Waking up sleeping facial muscles, relaxing over-working facial muscles and fixing bad facial expressions habits fix the root cause of aging symptoms in the face.”
5. Koko Wants a ‘Shark Tank’ Investor to Help Expand Her Business’ Reach
Koko will be going into her Shark Tank pitch with the hopes of landing at least one investor. She posted a video of her time on the set on Instagram, along with the caption, “Be sure to check me out at #SharkTank Sunday 6 PM PST. Thank you so much for your support for me to get there. I could not have done it by myself.”
When asked what she has planned for the future of Face Yoga, Koko told Voyage L.A. that she thinks it will get even bigger. “I pitched the business to investors, but it seems that they don’t really understand the benefits, as it’s not instant like botox,” she explained. “I understand American love instant result, but I believe there is enough population who prefers slow, but natural/safe/effective methods like Face Yoga in the U.S. In Japan, it is an established market with more than 800 instructors. I believe the same will happen here in the near future too!”