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We Can Lie And Try To Hide It But Our Facial Expressions Can’t

Lies are destructive, but certain facial expressions can help you determine when someone is lying to you. Understanding these expressions gives you an edge.

Recently I watched a TED talks about liars, only to discover that everyone lies. The key is, however, that people lie for different reasons. While some of these lies may seem harmless, it’s still important to know when this is occurring. Also, it seems there is a fine line between acceptance of small lies and the destruction caused by lies that matter more than others. Our facial expressions reveal what we need to know.

How do you know when someone is lying?

It’s all about these facial expressions and which ones provide clues. Lies become obvious when you learn to read these cues during a conversation. The eyes, the mouth and all the tiny muscles in the face respond either in a dishonest or honest manner. Here’s the clincher, you have to be able to differentiate between the two.

The eyes

The eyes provide a link to both imagination and memory. While imagination is seen as a good thing, when it comes weeding out a lie, the imagination is not our friend. I bet you’re wondering how this relates to the eyes. Well, it’s simple.

When someone looks up and to the left when asked a question, they are usually recalling information or utilizing the memory. This portrays the truth. On the other hand, when someone looks up and to the right, they are utilizing their imagination to fabricate information, which works well with lying.

Eyebrows and other indicators of the eyes

When someone lies, they generally raise the eyebrows in a subconscious attempt of conveying openness.

They also blink a lot and hold their eyes closed longer. Closing the eyes is a way to buy time for the liar to keep their story intact without betraying themselves through dishonest eyes.

Also, eye contact will either be avoided or forced, both will reveal whether or not the truth is present.


When a person lies, they often blush. Apparently, nervousness causes an increase in temperature, especially in the face. The blood flows into the cheeks and causes the liar to blush. Although this phenomenon can occur due to other stimuli, it is almost certain to reveal a liar.


I am sure you’ve read many articles about deciphering facial expressions, so I am sure you can tell a fake smile from a real one, right? Well, in case you’re wondering, a fake smile has little to no effect on the eyes. In fact, fake smiles are often accompanied by “dead eyes”. A real smile, on the other hand, has a great effect on the eyes.

A real smile often causes the eyes to light up or become smaller. This is because more muscles are used in happiness than with forced demands. When a person lies, the smile is almost always fake, revealing the truth through the eyes yet again.


Facial expressions that come and go quickly are some of the best indicators of lies. The reasons these expressions prove to be great lie detectors is because micro-expressions reveal raw truths.

Those moments in time reveal the honest feelings of the person being questioned. They also reveal something is wrong due to the fact that the expressions are being quickly hidden. Not all micro-expressions indicate lying, however, so you must be trained to notice subtle changes and to understand all factors associated with any given situation or interrogation.


Although it’s questionable whether speech is considered an expression of the face, it can still be useful for learning about other forms of facial language. In this case, when speaking, liars often repeat themselves because it seems they are attempting to convince themselves of their own lies.

They often speak fast in order to get the lies out in one consistent piece. While talking, inauthentic people will experience an increase in heart rate because they are nervous, left wondering if the lies they just told will be believable.

If the person they are talking to is familiar with reading facial expressions and other indicators of lies, they don’t stand a chance.

Also, liars will add more detail to stories to convince their listeners as well. After all, they are usually so worried that they tend to over-embellish and rehearse answers as a rather unintelligent way of fortification.

They may also be defensive, answer a question with a question or simply play the victim.

Other body languages that tell the truth

Not only do facial expressions indicate the authenticity of what a person says or does, but body language does a great job of this as well. Fidgeting, sweating and increased heart rate, as mentioned before, also reveal that someone may be lying or at least not telling the whole truth.

It may take some practice to catch these small indicators, but once you have the ability, you will be able to know the truth for yourself. Liars and inconsistent people do more damage than they like to believe, and the quicker we can reveal them, the better.

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