A smile looks gorgeous on you

What's in a smile? 

Print My smile was born out of a desire to deliver smiles in everything we do, so this World Smile Day we wanted to bring you some smiles!

The history of a smile

We're also fond of a bit of useless information here at Smile Towers so we've scoured the history books (...which means Google, obvs!) to find some facts about smiling which we hope will brighten your day!

Useless fact #1. According to Wikipedia, Primatologist and world-renowned ape expert, Signe Preuschoft, traces the smile back over 30 million years of evolution to a 'fear grin' that monkeys and apes used to show predators that they were harmless or to signal submission to more dominant group members. It involved baring clenched teeth which I imagine looked a little like the smile you do when someone you really don't like greets you with a cheery "Hi!".

Useless fact #2. It takes around 42 muscles to smile, more than it does to frown. Now that's a workout I think I can handle.

Useless fact #3. The Victorian's thought it uncouth to smile! A popular saying of the day was 'Nature gave us lips to conceal the teeth', and smiling was considered classless. This explains why photographs from the Victorian era depict sombre families and regal poses. Smiling was the preserve of the drunk, buffoons or actors on the stage. Of course, dentistry was not common-place in Victorian times and so there was probably good reason to cover one's teeth!   

Useless fact #4. Smiling when you're sad may actually improve your mood. According to www.psychologytoday.com, research shows that even a forced smile can reduce blood pressure and improve your immune response, and it releases endorphins serotonin which are natural painkillers and make you feel better. So fake it if you don't feel it and it may just lift your mood. 

Useless fact #5. Smiling is the first facial expression that we learn. Babies even smile in the womb. How lovely is that?!

Useless fact #6. The famous enigmatic smile depicted by Leonardo da Vinci in the 'Mona Lisa' is one of the most talked about of all time. A kind soul at the University of Freiburg undertook some research to determine once and for all whether the subject was happy or sad. The finding of the study confirmed that her expression is unequivocally 'happy'. According to an article in the Independent, twelve participants were shown nine black and white photos of the Mona Lisa smile, eight of which had been digitally altered, with half made to look sadder and half happier. The ninth was the original smile. 

After shuffling the photos and showing them to each participant 30 times, the participant's identified the original photo as 'happy' 97% of the time. I'm glad someone was able to solve that one for us!

Useless fact #7: Humans, monkeys and apes are the only animals to smile in happiness. Other animals may appear to smile but it is not because they are happy. Although I swear my cat smiles in happiness so I'm going to say the jury is still out on that one!

Useless fact #8. Unlike many other body language interpretations, smiling means happiness across the globe. It's the international language of joy, which is why we love them and treasure them in gorgeous personalised gifts. 

Useless fact #9. Smiling is contagious. Like yawning, when we see someone smile we want to smile too. It's something to do with neurons in the brain syncronizing with those we interact with, but I can't explain it any further as I got lost in the science (yawn!). 

Useless fact #10, We don't actually have another useless fact to share, but we'd like to give you one more reason to smile. When you buy anything from our range of personalised gifts before next Friday, 12th October, we'll give you 15% off. And as smiles are free, we'll deliver your smiles free too! Simply enter WORLDSMILES at checkout to save 15% off plus free delivery. 

Finally, here's a little gallery of images that have made us smile today. We hope it's contagious...