A man's smile makes him more persuasive with women

November 29, 2012, 10:43 ammenshealth

Want to be more persuasive with the fairer sex? All you need to do is flash your smile

Sex & Women

In a huge win for oft-manipulated men everywhere, new research in Spain has found that when a man flashes his pearly whites, women are more likely to do what he asks.

The study, conducted at the University of Granada, had men give instructions to groups of women and recorded their body language and perception of the man.

The result

The test subjects were more likely to obey the instructions and have a higher opinion of the man when he smiled – even when the smile was accompanied by blatantly sexist remarks*. The researchers also found that a man's grin made the women assume a more narrow and submissive posture.

The kicker: a woman smiling while delivering important information is perceived as weaker than when she says it straight-faced. (News to us, considering our brains go to mush every time a woman smiles.)


The researchers concluded that the perceived warmth from the man's smile made the women alter their behavior.

It's a theory supported by body language expert Patti Wood, who said that women reply more heavily on body language cues than men do for decision-making.

"Even if there's dissonance between what's been said and what his body is doing, women will look to the body," Wood said.

"If they see a smile, then the interaction seems more friendly."

How to tell if it's working
If you've flashed your most disarming smile but you're not sure it's worked its magic, look for these subtle cues:
- She's avoiding eye contact

- She's smiling too much

*In no way do we condone the use of this research to get away with sexist remarks.

Related: Get more moves to get your way more often

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  1. Colin06:20pm Thursday 29th November 2012 ESTReport Abuse

    The right smiles work with most people (unless they have a grumpy mood or temperament). The genuine friendly smile is a non-threatening partly-submissive display of affection, unless you are well known for trying to be manipulative. Or it could also be a display of Schadenfreude.

  2. Justin04:12pm Thursday 29th November 2012 ESTReport Abuse

    judging by most comments, if your a masogynistic #$%$ it takes more than a smile

  3. Illegal Immigrant03:28pm Thursday 29th November 2012 ESTReport Abuse

    Back in the good old prehistoric days all you had to do was grunt and hit them over the head with a club. No need to waste time smiling especially when you didn't have any teeth left.

  4. Glib02:44pm Thursday 29th November 2012 ESTReport Abuse

    What an amazingly complex study.

  5. Linda02:12pm Thursday 29th November 2012 ESTReport Abuse

    If a man smiled at me, I'd smile back. It really depends on the woman you smile at or maybe it's the way you're smiling. Some leer which is creepy. I do have to admit sometimes I smile at other women and they never look at me.

    1 Reply
  6. Andrew01:38pm Thursday 29th November 2012 ESTReport Abuse

    What is it about women. They always seem to think a bloke wants a piece of 'em when you're just trying to be friendly.

  7. Roaring Horn12:44pm Thursday 29th November 2012 ESTReport Abuse

    In the workplace I smile all the time also and really enjoy helping, but unfortunately women still be bitches to me also. I think in general women are just not as nice as men. There are lots of things that women say, that are just down right nasty and they really enjoy speaking about others.

  8. Adam12:24pm Thursday 29th November 2012 ESTReport Abuse

    Garbage. I smile at women all the time and they're still bitches to me.



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