What are you opinions on models not being allowed to smile?

I am an amatuer photographer and have always hated the way models have to look expresionless. In my opinion it says to me "Hey look at me Im wearing expensive gucci dress and I am above the average person" Its kinda like your not allowed to enjoy wearing the clothing. Or you are just there as a manaquin to promote the brand and product. When I do photography I like models to feel comfortable and happy like they are naturaly enjoying the enviroment. I know that is not what the industry standard is but its an old style that is outdated and the industry is scared of change. Just like seeing bigger models who are not celebrities or one offs to claim diversity. Your thoughts are welcome on the subject. If any models are on here too love you opinions and if you would prefer to smile or not.What are you opinions on models not being allowed to smile?

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Most Helpful Girls

  • The more expensive the brand the more untouchable the models look. Look at Targets and Primarks models they all smile.

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    • Thats because it is a cheap brand and has to appeal to people on a tight budget. However I just feel expensive brands are afraid to look happy because then they are dumbing down to the level of a regular person. They have to be elitist otherwise socialites and celebrities will not be drawn in to paying 4x the price for a tshirt you can pay £20 for

    • Very good point. Interesting.

  • I think it has to do with what types of modeling/ gig is booked. Some brands want their products to be seen as a sensual in a forbidden apple-elite type of way that can be appealing to people who want to fit into that exclusive category. Many of these high fashion brands fall will call on the editorial, runway type of model. Now, on the other hand, lifestyle/commercial models are often encouraged to smile to show happiness, relatability and inclusivity. Also, one thing to consider is that most models are booked for their looks, specifically angled cheekbones and peak features; when a model smiles, those features are lost in that facial expression.

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What Girls Said 20

  • They're being paid so I can't see why it would matter. There is a reason for poses, clothing styles and expressions that they want to suit whatever purpose they have in mind... right? It's not for the model to decide what is best for their employer, is it? Am I missing anything here?

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  • It's easy to look smug but it's hard to fake a smile. Smiling is more attractive. The no expression makes them look confident because it's like they know they look good. But, that's not always the case. Their importance is mainly their appearance so they are more self-conscious than the average person because they make money based on their looks. So, even though they may look confident, they are probably not. But I agree smiling is better. If every model smiled in pictures, and if smiling is considered better than frowning, I think more people would smile just in every day life. Especially for individuals who idolize a celebrity. Their behavior influences others.

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  • I think the no smiling thing is fine. I mean, it’s kind of necessary for the brand they’re trying to sell. If the item is super expensive, they want the model to convey “I’m all that, get on my level” because that’s what the clothes are supposed to make you feel like when you wear them.
    But you know, for less expensive clothing that’s more playful you have the “catalog” models who pose with more whimsy. And for like an avant-garde piece, the model might do “vogue” poses, something more dramatic.
    Everything happens for a reason, that’s all I’m saying.

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  • I would also prefer for them to smile. I think they tell models not to smile to look more sexual and fierce.

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  • I wish i wasn't allowed to smile. Then people would stop telling me to. I don't fucking smile.
    xx
    ~ Mrs Manson

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  • I agree with you, that blank stare isn't a good look on anyone.

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  • I think it depends on the type of picture you’re taking

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  • Don't really care either way. That's what they're there for - to sell the product

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  • I think people wanna see how you look relaxed mood.

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  • They are just walking maniquinns

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  • Smiles are sexy

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  • Model is a model

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  • I think there is nothing wrong with it

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  • Becuase i think its againt their ploicy

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  • They should smile

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  • i could take it or leave it

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  • I don’t think it makes much sense for them not to smile to be honest.

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  • A lot of people have bad teeth and it’s a huge turn off. Just imagine a beautiful model who smiles and has these gums and crooked teeth...

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  • I think it's not bad for specific persons so I like it

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  • I wish they could smile too! VS fashion shows are the best because the models SMILE!

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What Guys Said 27

  • i'm not a model nor people photographer, so i'm not clear on what the motive behind not smiling is... it might just be cuz smiling looks tacky or something when it comes to high end stuff. i wouldn't call their look 'expressionless' exactly... not sure but it looks like they're trying to be lustful or something.

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  • I feel the same way. Sometimes I think all the top designer's being gay dudes is why the fashion world is so fucked-up. Then I remind myself not to be a bigot. But seriously: Why do the female models have to be skinny, like... little boys? I know they say it's so that the clothes look better, but... Fucked-up. Maybe it's the same with the smile. It makes them look more manly. What do I know?

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  • Dumb. But it highly depends on the purpose of the shoot. If you are taking a shot of a model in a scene where they are playing games or something, surely it'd be logical to let them smile. You should be one of the few future photographers that allow models to smile. I'm sure some models will love you for letting them smile.

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  • Models do or don’t smile depending on the feel of the advertisement. For food etc they’re almost always smiling.

    For fashion more often no unless they’re doing something playful. But it depends on the idea for the ad.

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  • I hear that it helps to keep the facial skin smooth for longer. :)

    tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/TheStoic

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  • As a professional photographer i know that it can fuck the pic up so i first take a pic without a smile and then one with a smile. Sometimes it's better with a smile but you can see if it is a genuine smile or not in the photos

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  • Smiling make people look more attractive and nice/friendly. However it dose not show the make up (and over model type things.) as well.
    However if you think that you want to try and have a model smile whilst shooting, try it there's nothing to lose.

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  • I think it’s the photographer or the company’s decision because they are the ones selling the image so it’s how they want it the model is just part of it like a painting the canvas is part of the painting but it doesn’t decide what’s on it

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  • I hate when peoole don't smile in pictures in general (unless its for a cool shot of course, like mine 😎)

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  • Smiles are overrated and usually forced. A natural facial expression is far more appealing in photos.

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  • Not smiling suits different photos better.

    Just because they don’t smile doesn’t mean they are expressionless.

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  • They want their model's to look seductive, smiling comes off more as sweet not sexy

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  • Yeah I agree seeing a model enjoy the product would be nice, I you talk unrealistic shit in the industry. I'm not in it, but still my opinion.

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  • To me they look less attractive when they don't smile.

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  • I never smile in pictures too, I don't know why i just don't

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  • I think that they need more facial expresion vercitiliy

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  • I think the lack of a smile tends to make the model look haughty or aloof, which is less attractive.

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  • Resting bitch face works for me.

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  • They signed up for it tho. I'm indifferent.

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  • Idc.

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