How to Smile

Three Methods:Improving the Look of Your SmileSmiling for the Right ReasonsMaking Smiling Part of Everyday Life

Do you want to be the person who walks into a room and lights it up with your smile? Smiling seems to come more naturally to some people than others, but like any habit, it gets much easier with practice. Smiling raises your spirits and makes other people happy as well - it's a very powerful expression.

Method 1
Improving the Look of Your Smile

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    Practice smiling a lot. Have you ever heard of an "easy smile"? People with easy smiles break into a grin effortlessly, and it usually makes those around them feel happy. When you practice a lot, smiling will become easier, and you'll look less strained when you do it. Practice what you feel to be your most attractive smile. Soon your confidence in your smile will increase, and you'll start flashing it without thinking.
    • Look at photos of yourself smiling in different ways. Do you like your smile best when your mouth is closed? Or do you like it open? Check it out from different angles. Which smiles and poses make your face light up the most? Which smile displays your other features to their best possible advantage? Which smile comes across as the most natural, the most "you"? Figure out which smile you like best, then practice in front of a mirror until you get it just right. Pay attention to how that great smile feels, so that you'll be able to replicate it without looking in a mirror.
    • Practice smiling at random strangers. Simply make brief eye contact with a person and smile. As you do so, think happy thoughts. Not everyone will smile back, but note how you feel when they do!
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    Smile with your eyes. A wholehearted smile will naturally draw in the eyes. This natural smile is called a Duchenne smile. It's not something you can fake; when you're forced to smile for photos, your eyes don't smile. It's only when you truly feel like smiling that you flash a Duchenne. The eyes are essential for a genuine, warm smile.
    • To get a feel for how to make your eyes smile, stand in front of a mirror and practice smiling, but concentrate only on your eyes. You may find it helpful to cover the lower part of your face with a piece of paper. Play around with it a bit, and you'll find that you can make your mouth smile when your eyes aren't smiling, and you can also smile only with your eyes.
    • When your eyes do smile, remember how it feels, which muscles are working and how. With practice, you may discover how to smile with your eyes at will by relying on your feelings and muscle memory.
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    Maintain good oral hygiene. One thing that can cause you to fear smiling is the worry that there is something stuck between your teeth, or that you have bad breath. Eliminate these sources of worry by taking active steps to keep your mouth fresh and clean.
    • Brush your teeth and tongue regularly, carry floss with you wherever you go so that you can clean up after dining, and have breath freshener on you at all times (natural or commercial).
    • See your dentist regularly for teeth check-ups and cleaning, as well as discussing options for teeth straightening or other treatments if this is a concern for you. When you smile people will inevitably look at your mouth, so following these considerations will help you make a better impression, and, more importantly, a healthy mouth will make you feel more confident about smiling.
    • If your teeth are stained, consider your lifestyle habits that bring this about and try to minimize the impacts of such habits as smoking or drinking too much red wine, coffee, soft drinks, etc. You can also get them whitened if that will improve your confidence.
    • Keep your lips in great shape to prevent chapping.
    • Deal with bad breath. If it's surface, cleaning and fresheners should be adequate. If these do not work, it may be a sign of an underlying health problem, so see your doctor for advice.

Method 2
Smiling for the Right Reasons

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    Make your smile genuine. While it is perfectly possible to crack a smile when you feel terrible, angry, annoyed, or you're up to something nefarious, smiling under these circumstances will make people wary of you. A genuine smile is much harder to fake. A genuine smile is detectable by others because it is accompanied by a general glow, smiling eyes where the outer corners crinkle and the lower lid tightens, and a reassuring demeanor that helps the viewer to feel more at ease in your presence. Here's how to smile more genuinely:
    • Don't smile when you just aren't feeling it. It will give others the impression that you can't be trusted. It's ok not to smile all day long.
    • Remember how it feels when you do crack a genuine smile. Try to regain that feeling each time you smile.
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    Smile when you feel good. A genuine smile comes from being happy, positive, and from drawing your feelings from the heart. Be happy that things are going well for the person you're talking to, that someone's joke is funny, that the sun is out, or that you're about to eat your favorite food. There are lots of reasons to be happy, and to smile!
    • Even when you aren't feeling cheerful, you can still find reasons to smile. Focus on the positive things that are going on in your life. Your mood will lift and it will feel easier to smile.
    • When you're confronted by a person or situation that makes you feel ambivalent and you're oscillating between being solemn or smiling, err on the side of smiling – find one single thing in your heart that is positive about the person or situation before you, and use that to create your smile.
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    Smile out of love. Think about someone you care about (perhaps the person standing in front of you as you smile), or about something that you genuinely love to do. It's much easier to produce friendly, easygoing, genuine smiles when you love what you do, when you love the people around you, and when you love humanity in general. Be grateful for all that you have and you'll find smiles come far more naturally.
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    Smile when you're feeling playful. Intense times can make us too serious. See life as an adventure, be gentle on yourself and allow your inner child to play. Being playful will bring a smile to your face much more easily.

Method 3
Making Smiling Part of Everyday Life

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    Smile when you normally wouldn't. Have you been holding back your smile out fear that it will make people wonder about you? Smiles attract attention, but it's the right kind of attention. As you go about your day, consider ways smiling can make your world a more positive place.
    • Smiling at work or during other professional occasions is not going to make you seem unprofessional. Quite the opposite, a smile will humanize you and make you appear more approachable. People will appreciate your recognition of their worth and of a job well done when you smile.
    • A smile makes you seem "real." If you're afraid of appearing vulnerable when you smile, accept that any form of vulnerability suggested by a smile is precisely what makes it such a powerful act. You're opening yourself up to others and people will respond better to that than to a serious, unmoved demeanor. Moreover, a smile accompanied by an assertive personality will take care of any sense that people will use your smile to walk all over you!
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    Expect smiling to be difficult in some situations. Smiling on demand can be difficult, whether it's for a photo or for the sake of keeping mom happy when the relatives you can't stand visit. This is because you are feeling self-conscious or you lack a genuine reason for smiling. In these sorts of cases, smiling needs to come from your memory of good smiles along with a little self-kidding or jokes in the head.
    • For a photo, smile 20 percent more than you think you should.[1]
    • Smile wide and show the top row of teeth. Don't forget to use your eyes!
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    Enjoy the many benefits of a smile. In order to want to smile, it really helps to know what benefits a smile can bring to your day. The following benefits are bound to make you lean towards sharing a grin with others most of the day:
    • Smiles improve your appearance. Charles Gordy once quipped: "A smile is an inexpensive way to change your looks". All you need to do is think about how you feel about a person who is frowning and a person who is smiling – who tends to be the better looking?
    • Smiles make things right again and say much more than words can. If you've goofed, said something less than complimentary, feel lost or alone, or feel down, a smile can restore the balance. It lets other people know that you're prepared to be open with them, and that you're willingly agreeing to make amends where needed.
    • Smiles create trust and rapport. A smile is a great way of establishing mutual feelings of being on the same level as others, whether that is one-to-one or in front of a group giving a presentation. It says "I'm OK, you're OK, and we're all going to enjoy one another's company."
    • Smiles make you feel good. Even if you're feeling a little blue, insert happy thoughts into your mind and just add that smile. It will trick your mind into feeling better, as endorphins are released to reduce physical or emotional stress.[2]
    • Smiles make other people feel good. An open-mouthed smile is visible from further away than a frown, offering people reassurance that you're friendly.[3] And it makes people feel better to see a smile, from afar or close-up.
    • Wrinkles are better when they're smile lines rather than frown lines. Mark Twain said: "Wrinkles should merely indicate where smiles have been"; viewed this way, smiles are an indication of your overall character, which becomes more and more outwardly telling as you age!
    • Smiling is a good long-term predictor of happier life outcomes. It's correlated with health, happiness, friends, success, and a longer life.


  • In a photo you can laugh or giggle a little to give your smile a natural kind of look.
  • Smiling is a great defense mechanism. If someone is trying to bring down your good spirits, smile around them and cancels out their bad energy.
  • You don't need perfect teeth to have a perfect smile. Not everybody has perfect teeth, and that's okay. Straight teeth are nice, but a great smile doesn't depend on standard model's teeth. That said, if you feel uncomfortable about your teeth you may be reluctant to smile, and that's no good. If that's the case, either learn to appreciate your individuality or look into cosmetic dentistry procedures. Or, you could smile with your mouth closed if preferred.
  • Smiling is a good way to show others that you're friendly, positive, and open to conversation. Always remember to smile from your heart; not with your mind.
  • Try a light smile: don't show as many teeth as you would when you're laughing. It's the best smile for flirting - light and seductive.
  • Ever laugh hysterically about something you've just seen? Take that memory but just laugh slightly and now you have a natural pretty smile.
  • Whenever ever you meet a new person smile.
  • Opportunities for smiling are all around you. Make the most of them.
  • Practice smiling in a mirror. Do it often and you will get the hang of it!
  • Studies have shown that the brain cannot tell a fake smile apart from a real smile. So always remember to smile even in the worst times.
  • A lot of men feel uncomfortable about smiling at strangers, especially at other males. If that is the case, then just offer a casual "Hi", or "Hey man!", or "What's going' on?".
  • If you have bad teeth, that's fine, because there are different types of ways to smile. If you want to, you can smile with your mouth closed.
  • If you smile at someone you don't know, chances are you'll make them very happy— and they'll smile back!
  • If you bite your bottom lip while smiling, it sometimes looks cute for flirting and giggling.
  • Practice in front of a mirror and maintain the smile for when you are outside or at a photo place! Have fun :-)!
  • Smiling in the bad times is actually good for you! Studies have proven that when faced with bad situations, those who put a smile on their face were actually happier than those who didn't. This is because smiling is something we do involuntarily meaning if we choose to do it in times of trouble our brain will associate it with good memories hence making us happier. But don't fake a good attitude if you have something inside that's hurting you, then nobody can help you feel better.


  • Try to make sure you don't have spinach or something stuck in your teeth because you'll leave a poor impression. Duck out to the bathroom after a meal and quickly refresh; this is even more important when you know your teeth are prone to catching bits of food or if you have braces.
  • Avoid fake smiles even if you have practiced a perfect smile.

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