People do a lot of crazy things to avoid wrinkles, but there is no sleep pillow or blood facial or crazy Japanese facial exerciser that can compete with the sheer weirdness of training oneself to never smile or laugh to avoid facial lines.
According to The Daily Mail, 50-year-old Tess Christian stopped smiling and laughing about 40 years ago in an attempt to prevent wrinkles. The technique appears effective, as Christian does look quite smooth in the face, but to stave off crow’s feet this woman has seriously not smiled in 40 years.
‘Everyone asks if I’ve had Botox,” Christian says, “but I haven’t, and I know that it’s thanks to the fact I haven’t laughed or smiled since I was a teenager. My dedication has paid off, I don’t have a single line on my face.”
Sure, avoiding expression will definitely prevent wrinkles. But I’d be willing to bet that people aren’t asking her if she’s had Botox because her skin is so smooth and youthful. It seems far more likely that they’re asking if she’s had Botox because she hasn’t moved her face in 40 years.
Christian says she has moments when she is happy, and she says she finds many things hilarious. She just doesn’t allow those things to register on her face. She even managed to stay stony-faced through the birth of her daughter in 1991.
Christian’s commitment to keeping a straight face has given her the world’s most unshakable case of Resting Bitch Face, and she says her pet hate is when men on the street tell her to smile or cheer up. She’s right; that is extremely obnoxious.
The Daily Mail even managed to find two more people who advocated never making facial expressions to fight off wrinkles. 38-year-old Vicky Kidd says she stopped smiling five years ago, at 33. While she will smile at her son so she doesn’t hurt his feelings, she generally avoids smiling at strangers to avoid wrinkles.
Seventy-year-old Christyne Remnant had a slightly less depressing way of avoiding wrinkles: She just stopped frowning. She says the fear of wrinkles led her to stop furrowing her brow at eight years old, and she’s avoided it ever since. While that seems a bit more pleasant than not smiling for 40 years, it is a messed-up world that makes 8-year-olds so afraid of wrinkles they vow never to frown again.
As a person who lives in that world, I have to admit that I fear wrinkles more than I fear almost anything, including bugs, airplanes, and the threat of falling through sewer grates. Even so, I don’t think a smooth face would be worth a lifetime without smiling or laughing. In fact, the very idea of giving up laughing to prevent wrinkles makes getting wrinkles seem like not such a bad prospect after all, especially if they’re earned through decades of smiling and laughing.
Admittedly, Christian’s system appears to be working for her. In the before and after photos in The Daily Mail, she does not look much different now than she did in 1982. Hopefully, that knowledge will make her happy, even if nobody will ever be able to tell.