It’s a cultural phenomenon that sprung up a few years ago identifying people with a resting facial expression that looks either annoyed, pissy, or bored. Otherwise known as Bitchy Resting Face.
Celebrities like Anna Kendrick, Victoria Beckham, Rihanna, and even Queen Elizabeth have all been accused of suffering from the pouty-face syndrome. In fact, if you google the term ‘Bitch Resting Face’, poor Kristen Stewart’s picture pops up more than anyone else’s!
For awhile the idea felt a little sexist, like a double standard, if you will. If a woman wasn’t smiling she was automatically labeled a bitch. There were a lot of fascinating articles about it, (you can check one out here at hercampus.com), but then Kayne West entered the scene…
The man took BRF to a whole new level! Suddenly other male celebrities were being called out: Bruce Willis, Kit Harrington, Simon Cowell (no surprise there), and Jeremy Renner. Could BRF really be sexist if men were suffering from it too?
Well, an interesting article came out this past February. Apparently Bitchy Resting Face is real, and behavioral researchers Jason Rogers and Abbe Macbeth have proved it. Using facial recognition software that could identify specific expressions based on a spectrum of over 10,000 images of the human face, the program maps 500 points, analyzes the image, and labels it an expression based on the 8 basic human emotions: happiness, sadness, anger, fear, surprise, disgust, contempt, and “neutral.”
Their surprising findings? They pumped in photos and videos of main offenders Kristen Stewart, Queen Elizabeth, and Kayne West. Interestingly enough, when scanning their expressions all of them showed high levels of contempt. But the real surprise? They detected BRF in an equal amount of male faces as female faces. Scientifically proving that it’s a gender-neutral disorder.
Phew! We can now all sleep a little easier tonight.