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July 26, 2011

Genuine Smile

Sudani woman with genuine smile
A smile is really contagious. You surely receive a smile in return from the person you smile at. However, sometimes, fake smiles are often exchanged as a formality and social ritual for avoiding the other person letting down.

For everybody of us, it's very important to know which facial muscles are involved that makes the great difference between a fake smile and a genuine smile in the first place. Let's try to know about the same.

A thin band of zygomatic muscles on both side of the face arising from Zygomatic bone i. e. near ears and merging into Orbicularis Oris (circular muscles around mouth) and skin of mouth corners also contracts and pulls edges of lips upwards while smiling.

When we watch a face with a genuine smile, it definite casts the magic. A genuine, warm and friendly smile originates from the bottom of heart and spreads all over the face. Telling sign of it are crinkled eyes, crow's feet in area between eyes and ears, no signs of tension on forehead and no furrowing of eyebrows.

Emotional centers inside brain controls movements of facial muscles. Originality lasts longer like a lingering fragrance of the blossom. Same principle applies to expression of emotions too. That's why a genuine smile appears and fades away gradually. On the other hand, a fake smile appears and fades quickly.

One has to put lot of efforts in mimicking a genuine smile at best by pulling back edges of lips forcefully just for showing teeth while keeping eyes wide open. No crinkling or crow's feet appear near eyes. A fake smile appears shallow and it drifts away quickly as if it is accidentally or purposefully put on the face.

Which is a genuine smile? Left or right?

You may find sales persons, professionals, politicians, actors, actresses, models and celebrities quite often putting fake smiles on their faces. They are really good at it. Can you really spot a genuine smile? I think that you can.

Don't forget to check your personal score through this test created by BBC Science. Also watch this video by Prof. Dr. Ehsan Hoque, a prominent Affective Computing researcher.

Although a smile is the most commercially capitalized aspect of the overall body language, a genuine smile is really hard to fake.

Related Articles:
1) Why we smile? 2) Asymmetrical Smile but not Contempt


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