Interactive diagram of the muscles of the head, face and neck

The nasalis, which is also known as the naris muscle, is a facial muscle located on either side of the nose (which is sometimes referred to as the "nares").

The nasalis is divided into two parts called:

  • the compressor nasalis and
  • the dilator nasalis.

The points of origin and insertion, and the actions of the nasalis muscle:

Origin: On the corresponding maxilla, i.e. 'upper jaw bone', there being a nasalis muscle and a maxilla bone on each side of the face
Insertion: On the corresponding nasal bone, there being a nasalis muscle and a nasal bone on each side of the face
  • Compresses the 'bridge' of the nose
  • Depresses the tip of nose
  • Elevates the corners of nostrils

The nasalis is one of the muscles of the head, neck, and face taught as part of many courses in Indian Head Massage. As this is a popular therapy we have included several pages that may be of interest to students of Indian Head Massage. See, for example, the page about skeletal structures of the head and neck.

See the page about Facial Muscles to view the location of the nasalis muscle. (This page consists of an interactive, rather than just a labelled, diagram, so you'll have to test yourself by guessing which muscle is the nasalis until you find the correct label.)

More about Muscles:

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