As if self-impressions couldn’t get worse, take this story about a girl and her “resting bitch face.” Resting bitch face, or RBF, has become a widely used term in the last few decades. It describes a person who’s “facial expression unintentionally appears as…angry, annoyed, irritated, or contemptuous, particularly when the individual is relaxed, resting or not expressing any particular emotion.”
This term is used casually in memes and when friends joke with friends, but culturally it’s adding top our insecurities—particularly in women.
In fact, women are flocking to plastic surgeons to help them look kinder and more approachable by altering their features.
The NY Post reported a story from a woman named Hope Davis, who didn’t take kindly to her friends uploading a few pictures of her on Instagram. She just didn’t like her appearance.
“I was like, ‘Oh great, I look mad in the middle of the party. I looked like a sourpuss.”
Apparently changing up one’s face to look more pleasant is pretty common. Incidence of the procedure has doubled over the last five years, according to one double board-certified plastic surgeon, David Shafer.
“This is actually a common request from patients — I get several each week. They may not always use the words ‘resting bitch face,’ but if I mention ‘RBF,’ they say, ‘exactly.’”
This type of procedure is usually pretty simple, though the exact details will vary by case and doctor. Oftentimes face fillers like Botox are used. It usually takes around 10 to 20 minutes and can run a patient $500 to $5,000.
The bonus? It lasts two years.
Why the sudden increase in this procedure?
“It’s because of a public shift in focus from the upper to lower face — “popularized by the Kardashians.”
But it’s not just Kim and the rest; he also thinks that selfies are part of the issue. People spend so much time looking down at their phones, it kind of emphasizes the RBF qualities of a face, and any selfies taken from below are gonna look funky.
So before you go jumping into injections, maybe reframe your face and hold the camera up instead of down?
How did Davis’ experience go? Pretty good, it seems.
“I caught a glimpse of myself out of the corner of my eye, and it gave me a positive vibe because I looked happy. This whole time, [I was focused on] how I project to the world, but I wasn’t paying attention to how I project to myself.”
To each their own, I suppose.
So if RBF is a problem for you, there are options. But please remember: you are beautiful, and RBF doesn’t really exist.
It’s just what society says.