Did you know that smiles can come across as either fake or genuine? Many body language sites and books will tell you that there is a difference, but without some solid video examples, it is harder to recognize in an instant exactly how it can come across.
The best person who is able to show this example, and who has coined the term “smize” (play with the words “smile” and “eyes” to say “smile with your eyes”), is Tyra Banks, who has repeated and reinforced the essential use of this skill in America’s Next Top Model.
While in the latter half of the video Tyra talks mainly about how she got onto the route to becoming a model, her demonstration of the different kinds of smizes in the beginning of the video, each targeted at a different market, is a good starting point to increasing your repertoire of smiles, which will add value to how you present yourself.
Practice your different smizes, because they will add much more character to your dances.
That cheeky smile in your Cha Cha dance will show your fun and flirty character, but it might not work in the Rumba when you’re probably going for a more subtle look. Similarly, you probably will not want your angry Paso Doble look to dominate your Jive!
As silly as you might feel, practice in front of the mirror when possible (you always have the option to lock yourself in the bathroom). Watch videos of people whose smiles you love and try to imitate that in front of the mirror. Through imitation, and experimenting the different smizes, you’ll be able to build up a personal library of smile expressions. It will feel awkward, just like the first time you tried to do a body roll or learn the basic waltz, but as with any skill, practicing until you get your favourites working on command is the way to go.
Over to you: do you have any tips on adding value to your smiles? Let me know in the comments below! Share this article with a friend who might need some help in learning to smile in different situations!