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Choose Your Smile: 10 Smile Types

7 December 2009 No Comment

A smile is a facial expression with the upward contours at the ends of your mouth. A recent research has identified the ten main kinds of smile, each on its own connoting a different type of emotion.

Most smiles are happy signs. They speak of joy, happiness, love or even pride. However, there are smiles that can also be an involuntary expression of anxiety, otherwise known as the grimace, or an expression of embarrassment in a sheepish sort of way.

There are many types of smiles, and after a while you start to notice the small variations which differentiate them:

1. The Heartfelt Smile. This is known as the straight from the heart, genuine and sincere smile. smile1The true and impulsive feelings of pure joy, gladness, happiness, amusement and pleasure are spontaneously expressed through this smile.

The facial muscles will raise the corners of the mouth, while both the cheeks will be lifted up and at the same time retracting the skin around the eye socket inwards. The stronger the emotion gets, the more distinct this muscle action will become. This heartfelt smile normally only last between two-thirds of a second to four seconds and it is very seldom held longer than that.

2. The Tight-Lipped Smile. A favourite of many people, do you find yourself tight-lipping a joke or an annoying person while attempting to remain friendly? I’m sure you have, we all have.

The lips are stretched tight across the face to form a straight line concealing the teeth. It sends the message that the ‘smiler’ has a secret or a withheld opinion that they will not be sharing with you.

3. Dealer smile – All dealers have in their skill set at least one type of sly, lazy smile that only card dealers can do. This smile is used in response to positive comments/requests from players along the lines of, “Please let me win / You’re beautiful / You are the best dealer in the whole world.” It is friendly without being inviting, and it never means “Yes” or “Thank you.” When they mean “Thank you” they say “Thank you.” The Dealer smile means something like, “It is too much trouble to actually speak with you, and seeing how you’ll probably be screaming for my death within the next fifteen minutes, there’s no sense engaging your delusion that we have some special connection, so I will smile at you instead to acknowledge that you are speaking.”

4. The Twisted Smile. This smile is rather weird as it shows opposite emotions on each side of the face. Picture A below, the right brain raises the left side eyebrow, the left zygomatic muscles and left cheek to produce one type of smile on the left side of the face while the left brain pulls the same muscles downwards on the right side to produce an angry frown. When you place a mirror down the middle of illustration A, at an angle of 90 degrees to reflect each side of the face, you produce two completely different faces with opposite emotions.

5. Loser smile – This smile happens when someone loses a big hand and wants to give off the impression that it doesn’t matter that much to him, usually in response to some laughing comment by the hand’s winner. See, unlike the civilized world wherein it’s generally uncool to gloat in victory or kick a dog when he’s down, in the casino it’s pretty standard that after you take a guy’s money you can give him a “good-natured” ribbing about it, because….well, because these people are sick.

6. The Gloomy Smile. This type of smile can be easily defined by its asymmetrical, lopsided and smile2wry shape. Half the mouth will look like smiling while the other half frowning at the same time. This smile is usually displayed in front of others by someone who is conceding failure, defeat or unhappiness.

7. Sideways-Looking-Up Smile. I’ve got to say, this is my favourite type of smile and I’m sure most men would agree with me. It’s so enthralling and ‘cute’. It simply spills out playful, secretive and juvenile messages while turning heads of men everywhere as it switches on the man’s parental feelings of wanting to protect and care for females. There’s only one woman who pulled of this smile perfectly and used it to captivate hearts of people everywhere – Princess Diana.

8. The Counterfeit Smile. A counterfeit smile is also more asymmetrical compared to a sincere and genuine smile, and it is an intentional gesture performed to mislead and deceive others. This kind of fake smile usually last longer than a heartfelt smile, and more time is needed for it to spread across the face.

Many examples of the counterfeit smile can be seen from the faces of inexperienced actors, shady politicians, dishonest salesmen and all those other people whose job requires smiling all the time.

9. Not understanding you smile – The default dim-wattage smile, usually accompanied by some head-nodding, used when you want to appear engaged in whatever the hell this person is blathering at you about. Unfortunately, a popular staple of corporation bankers.

10. Nothing i can do smile – This is the smile that the floorman or pit boss gives you when they’re telling you that despite all your screaming, the request or complaint you have registered is just not going to go your way tonight. It’s an embarassingly fake smile, which can trigger-quick switch to a scowl when they decide to start using the Bark of Intimidation on you. Once you see the Nothing I Can Do smile, even if you have a valid complaint, you can be sure they’ve already decided you’re not important enough to satisfy.