“…You are not exactly scary but people meeting you for the first time feel intimidated a lot!”
Me: Oh! Really? But why?
Her: You have a bitch face.
Me: I have a WHAT now!
Cut to my bedroom. I am looking at the mirror and assessing what part of my face makes it look like a bitch. But first, what’s a bitch face?
Sorry, but I am not familiar with this term.
Looked up the internet and found out this; according to Wikipedia, yes Wikipedia has dedicated an entire page, explaining this facial expression or the lack of it on our faces, particularly women. ( Bitch Face)
Resting bitch face, also known as RBF, or bitchy resting face, is a facial expression which unintentionally appears as if a person is angry, annoyed, irritated, or contemptuous, particularly when the individual is relaxed, resting or not expressing any emotion.
Why bitch face? A person who is expressionless or is not chirpy looking can’t be called a bitch face, that’s what I thought! You guessed it right, I do have a problem with this term. I don’t feel like smiling and accommodating everyone’s desire to perceive me as a pretty lady, all the bloody time. Sadly, that is too much to ask for so what do we now? Well, for starters ask a woman to always smile- Long live the queen- if she doesn’t comply to the these unspoken rules go ahead and brand her a bitch.
Technology is a great equalizer, a facial recognition software called the FaceReader proved that men are just as prone to RBF as women. Then again, why this term? Kanye West, the popular American rapper and artist is also branded with someone who has a RBF or the Resting Bitch Face syndrome.
The origin of this term is not clear but, it became popular in 2013! Now to cash in on this, a comedy group Broken People uploaded a parody video titled “Bitchy Resting Face” (BRF) in which male and female “sufferers” of an annoyed-looking blank expression ask for understanding from non-sufferers. You can watch this video here- Broken People RBF Parody Video
Although it was a parody and was fair in its treatment, taking into consideration both the genders but, what erupted as an internet sensation in the form of endless memes? Of course, the Resting Bitch Face reference! The Resting Asshole Face didn’t quite catch up, I wonder why?! No one’s “suffering” from a bitchy face! If we go by this definition, women have to look chirpy and inviting all the time? But, when it comes to men, an angry, uninviting look on a face is considered sexy and smoldering. This discrimination is not even funny, it is annoying and frankly demeaning to women.
A resting bitch face implies that a woman is not friendly or puts an undue pressure on her to look a certain way. May be I am not interested in being chirpy and friendly all the time, is that too much to ask? I don’t have to look “sweet” because it has been blindly believed that women are supposed to look a certain way. The coy, sweet and smiling girl narrative has been going on for long and may be it is time to flip this narrative.
I adore Julia Roberts but, I can’t think of plastering a broad smile like hers on my face all day long!
I have no interest to indulge in a day-long pout fest either.
For once let the women decide for themselves if they want to look expressionless (not bitchy face) or look energetic or chirpy like a sparrow. It is all fun until you recognize someone with a syndrome as new and lame as the Resting bitch Face.
I am sure psychologists won’t mind spending their precious time in researching something more important, say Mental Health Issues. This can be helpful too 🙂
Next time when someone asks you to smile more often, tell them to think more often before they open their mouths. Have a good day, guys 🙂