According to 12 guys and also a body language expert, it’s something to carry out with percreating uncomfortableness.

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“This is a confront that says, ‘I’m kind of fun!’ yet still reminds you, the viewer, ‘I am a challenging, significant dude.” —Alex Kirshner
This face is everywhere. Though I have sudepend done it at one point or another, it is particularly widespread among males that are somewright here in in between teenagehood and also middle age, the period of life many fraught through concerns and doubts about one’s area in the human being. It is a challenge that expresses this uncertainty — it is both happy and sad, surprised and also indifferent, hopeful and also cynical, studied and also spontaneous.

And for an extremely lengthy time, I despised it. Eincredibly time I’d check out a crush doing it on Instagram (a lot!) I would certainly suffer a deep, full-bopassed away pang of cringiness. To me, it always rereferred to as the fraudulent “who, me?” poses of beforehand 2000s pop-punk lead singers, an expression of nice-guyness scheduled for dudes that would later on ask you for nudes via MyGap.

Today, though, I think the face communicates a specific world-weariness that I discover exceptionally relatable. The bewilderment of the raised eyebrows is counter by a tautness in the mouth that reads as disappointment. The eyes, also, often have a certain deadness about them. Which, same!

According to body language skilled Traci Brown, what the challenge is actually broadcasting is that the perchild doesn’t really want to be taking the photo in the first place. “There’s no smile — their eyes are kind of wide. They’re doing it because they need to, choose they’re forced right into it,” she told me over the phone freshly. It renders feeling, then, that guys could be even more most likely to make a confront that screams, “I am uncomfortable!” while participating in an act that is frequently coded as feminine.

When I proved her a photo of professionally annoying 20-year-old social media phenom Nash Grier making the face, Brown explained it: “He’s not mirroring emovement prefer he really wants to be tbelow. He’s like, ‘Ah, I gotta take this photo.’ When his eyebrows are increased, that shows emphasis on a details suggest. So he’s simply trying to emphasize that he doesn’t desire to execute it.”


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“The tightening of the confront muscles you need to execute to make the face in question right here additionally comes through, choose, a 5 percent smirk, virtually a hint of a hint of a smirk.” — Ricdifficult Johnchild
To discover out why so many kind of youngish males who are not previous teen Vine stars are making this challenge, I asked a variety of them. As it turns out, tbelow are many factors, from a desire to hide one’s “jacked-up teeth” to an effort to erase all the sadness from one’s confront and develop a facsimile of happiness. Spoiler: A lot of the factors are type of dark!

They don’t recognize how to make any various other faces

“First, it prevents crazy eyes — not all of us deserve to smize choose Tyra. 2nd, it’s hard to obtain a real smile (via teeth!) best without looking choose a goober. It took me around 1,500 selfies throughout my trip to Peru to obtain my easy, breezy, and convincing selfie smile down. Third, it mimics the face you make as soon as you watch someone and also think, ‘Ah, what a nice surprise!’ Last however not leastern, it’s specifically what comes up as soon as you Google ‘Confident Face.’ Try it.” —Max Garelick, 26, functions in finance

“You start off wanting to obtain a selfie wbelow you look organic, happy, and attrenergetic, yet in eexceptionally photo, your eyes are closed or you smile choose a serial killer. After, prefer, five attempts, you just do the challenge so at leastern you have actually a shoot via your eyes open you don’t look completely pissed off at the civilization, and also contact it a day. Guys just don’t have the patience to take a good selfie.” —C.J. Martinez, 26, producer

“Why do I make the face? A few reasons:

When I pressure a smile, it looks prefer an alien trying to replicate a huguy smile for the initially time.When I press my lips together, my eyebrows kind of naturally increase, which does provide an included benefit of reducing my fivehead earlier down to a forehead.Uncertain why I regularly include some kind of hand gesture. Thumbs-up, tranquility authorize, hang loose, I’m also functioning on reclaiming the ‘OK’ hand also authorize. I think the hand just sort of helps fill out some of the negative space in the photo, or maybe it distracts the viewer from my confront (one more bonus).

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“All of this is most likely simply made up to make myself feel good and I carry out it completely subconsciously.” —Kyle Jackboy, 29, job manager


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“I think the hand also just sort of helps fill out some of the negative area in the photo, or possibly it distracts the viewer from my confront (an additional added bonus).” —Kyle Jackchild

It screams “fun guy!”

“This is a challenge that says, ‘I’m sort of fun!’ but still reminds you, the viewer, ‘I am a difficult, major dude, and I bacount have time to connect in such trivial things as selfies.’ It’s the pictorial tantamount of putting precisely one foot in the pool, so I’m participating however not delicate in any actual way, because who cares about looks? I must grow up.” —Alex Kirshner, 24, college footround writer

“This challenge is a male indistinguishable of the duckchallenge. It’s an entry-level, go-to, easy-to-pull-off pose for a male to usage in a photo without a lot initiative or risk. I typically select not to make this confront in any type of photo taken of me. Instead, I opt for a laugh/smile that rather makes me so squinty it looks choose my eyes are closed bereason I’m blinded by the sun. Also not a good look, however it’s really all I’ve acquired. I think bros make this face bereason they believe it provides off a mix of mysteriousness and quirkiness at the very same time. The raised eyebrows signal, ‘Oh, wow, you captured me off guard! Ha! Oh, a photo of me?’ which deep down is a method for the subject to justify the reality that they’re taking a selfie. The smirk is like, ‘I’m too cool for college yet I’ll still take this selfie bereason hey, I’m a fun male.’

“Sidebar: For some factor, I think it’s fairly welcomed that womales take selfies — but if you capture a male trying to obtain a fit pic off in a public bathroom, it usually makes everyone feel awkward. I believe we have to work together to reverse this trfinish and also assistance the dude that’s just trying to flex a little bit to feel excellent about himself.” —Max Levitzke, 27, works in solar energy


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“It’s an entry-level, go-to, easy-to-pull-off pose for a man to usage in a photo without a lot effort or risk.” —Max Levitzke
“I don’t generally take these types of selfies very regularly, yet I feel favor what it’s connecting is, ‘I wanna send you a pic of me smiling, but I don’t want to completely smile bereason that’s too cheesy, so here’s a pic of me through somewhat of a half-smirk so you know that I’m excited around what you’re talking about but don’t want to come across as overly excited.’ I recognize that more than likely doesn’t make any type of kind of feeling, but the male brain have the right to be stselection. I feel prefer I’ve sent these kind of selfies typically with Snapchat so they deserve to disshow up. Also probably males just aren’t excellent at taking selfies? I recognize personally I’m fairly trash at it.” —Joe Ali, 25, shooter/editor

It’s because smiling equals weakness

“Some combination of shyness and also plain old male lizard brain command also me not to smile. It’s somepoint I’ve significantly tried to override — smiling is great and also provides everyone feel good! — but my instincts don’t desire me to. I guess smiling feels choose it’s too much? Or maybe I’d simply feel exposed. I’ve got pretty jacked-up teeth.” —Seth Rosenthal, 29, video producer

“Ugh, I have made the selfie challenge you are referring to yet I’m not sure I ever before realized I was doing it till now. Add it to the pile of things to be insecure about. I think it happens a lot even more as soon as you need to take it for a dating application. I think the raising of the eyebrows is expected to, favor, soften your face? Like, eyebrows up indicates ‘hey! :)’ and eyebrows dvery own or neutral implies ‘hey.’ As far as the tight-lipped point, that’s just dudes not wanting to smile bereason it renders you delicate or whatever.” —Ryan Simmons, 30, video producer


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“I feel favor I’ve sent these form of selfies normally via Snapchat so they deserve to disappear.” —Joe Ali

It straddles the fence of masculine acceptability

“I feel like this might be inherently a look through a hint of shame among us males, bereason in the traditional sense, dudes aren’t even really supposed to be taking selfies, are we? When the selfie really started taking off in the Myarea 2009-ish days, duckconfront was all the rage thanks to the mirror pic and there was no way in hell 16-year-old me was going to be recorded dead doing duckchallenge (bereason that was for girls, of course).

“Fast-forward a decade or so and possibly I’m still a small hosted ago by the faux machismo prepubescent me subscribed to in regards to the selfie. Besides that, I think the confront is additionally pretty neutral. I’m not gonna frvery own in a selfie because that would look dumb. But then aobtain, if I flash some toothy grin in a solo selfie, that looks kinda dumb too. I expect, just how happy am I really meant to be around taking a selfie? The tightening of the confront muscles you have to carry out to make the confront in question here additionally comes with, like, a 5 percent smirk, nearly a hint of a hint of a smirk. I’m as well cool for college (and also by institution, I mean emoting in a tangible way).” —Ricdifficult Johnson, 25, sporting activities writer

“Somepoint to execute via the regarded masculinity of selfies. Smiling naturally would suggest that I reap this teenage girl routine method too much. The eyebrow raise and nonchalant smirk gives the appearance that I don’t treatment around my appearance and also that I didn’t retake this 5 or 10 times — even though they did.” —Zach French, 32, organization advancement manager


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“Is this what happiness looks like?” —Mike Imhoff
“I think (generally) males are less comfortable taking photos than girls. But I think everyone has actually a game plan when it pertains to photos. Instead of having to wing it, you just have your go-to because you mainly understand the outcome, the same method girls do the cross leg/arm bent on the waist/lean-in formula. (I tend to do this open up mouth grin point prefer I’m doing a big laugh.)

“Guys likewise potentially feel a particular vulnercapability, or regarded vulnercapacity, as soon as it involves photos. Like, it’s uncool to gain being photographed. So the more you downplay it, the more comfortable you feel (like exactly how males follow everything they text with ‘haha’ or ‘lol’ in message, even when they’re not even attempting to be funny). —Mark Topel, 30, senior copywriter

It masks the pain of being alive

“I would certainly say it’s the tantamount of unnecessarily crumpling and also eating a journal enattempt simply because someone walked in the room. You need to hurry up and also obtain all that deep sadness out of your confront before the cam goes off. Is this what happiness looks like?” —Mike Imhoff, 30, senior director

As I supposed, males have a lot of very various reasons for perdeveloping this particular facial expression. All of them, but, assistance the principle that being a perboy with a challenge who occasionally has to write-up photos of that face on the internet deserve to be a very fraught task — also for males. Who knew!


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