(Natural News) Scientists at the Swansea University have found a way of looking better instantly and without spending any money. The study reveals that smiling more makes people look healthier and more attractive, as reported by The Daily Mail.
“There is a simple message here: looking good costs nothing, and need not be dangerous. All it takes is a smile to look healthier, and the more you do it, the healthier you’ll likely be,” said Alex Jones, an expert in facial perception and a lecturer in psychology.
The researchers used subjective and objective measures to come up with the findings of the study. The study participants were given 15 faces to rate how happy the faces appeared to be and how healthy they looked. Then, the researchers measured how open the eyes were and how upturned the corners of the mouth were on the faces. The psychologists were able to confirm that a person can be perceived as healthy just by looking at his or her facial expression. Results show that a person’s happy face was just as important as his or her age, body mass index, and whether he or she uses cosmetic products or not when it comes to looking better.
Furthermore, the researchers said that faces with genuine smiles are considered to be even more attractive. These smiles were seen to be reflect a healthier body, compared to just looking cheerful or having a blank expression.
“We discovered that faces look healthier when they are smiling, compared to a neutral expression, and that it doesn’t matter whether the faces are male or female,” Jones said.
In addition, Jones and his team discovered that the effect of smiling gets greater as a person gets older. He said that if younger adults seem healthier whenever they smile, older adults appear much healthier.
“A smile was a more important cue than how old the face appeared to be, and more recent research has shown a happy expression is even more important than cues like body fat or skin coloration,” said Jones.
Previous studies have found relationships between smiling and health, such as those who genuinely smiled in pictures lived longer than those who had polite smiles or did not smile at all. New university students who were smiling in their Facebook posts had better social lives and satisfaction as they graduated.
Jones explained that these associations are related to a part of psychology called positive effect. (Related: Positive Psychology: Be thankful and smile its good for your heart.)
“This is a highly desirable trait to have. It means you live a longer and healthier life by virtue of being optimistic and cheerful,” Jones said.
The relationship between happiness and well-being
Smiling or being happy does not just make you look healthier, you actually become healthier. Researchers from the University of Utah and University of Virginia examined various studies on the relationship between happiness and health. They found that about 65 percent of the studies revealed that being happy improved the health and well-being of a person. Researchers explained that this may be because positive people are more likely to live a healthy lifestyle. In addition, having a good mood may have a direct effect on the immune system and health of the heart. However, the degree to which happiness benefits the health of people is still indefinite.
“Scores of studies show that our levels of happiness versus stress and depression can influence our cardiovascular health, our immune system strength to fight off diseases, and our ability to heal from injuries,” said study author Ed Diener.
Read more articles on how to be more naturally beautiful at Mind.news.