The average resident living in the South West smiles 10 times every day - 219,000 times over their lifetime, it has emerged
The summer sunshine is most likely to trigger a grin, followed by a compliment from a stranger and flicking back through old photographs. Our partner or spouse is most likely to make us smile, according to the nationwide study, carried out by Moshulu.
Eight out of ten of us are confident enough to smile at strangers – with most of us happy to beam at someone we don’t know eight times a day, on average. Virtually all of us (95 per cent) will smile back when a stranger smiles at us.
But it’s not all a bed of roses, two of our 11 smiles a day are FALSE, with a miserable one in ten Brits claiming they ‘don’t like smiling’.
But around half of us admit we don’t smile as much as we could do. Three quarters wish people smiled more often.
The age of 22.5 emerged as the point when we smile the most.
Commenting on the results, Dr. Jessamy Hibberd, a leading Chartered Clinical Psychologist, said: “It’s interesting to see that the majority of people think that they should smile at least 7 times a day in order to feel happy and content. While smiling is something that we often do subconsciously, we should be considering it as an important part of our day. We’ve all heard about the ‘five a day’ rule for fruit and veg, but the ‘importance of 7 a day’ when it comes to smiles is just as real – the benefits on positive mental health are immense.
The researcher, Moshulu, the British retailer of bright and colourful footwear and accessories, has released a ‘Smile Scale’.
Shaun Fulls, Director at the popular high street brand, said: “We know how much something as simple as a really great pair of shoes can make a difference to someone’s day, so we conducted the research to find out what else makes the nation smile. We hope the findings, as well as the ‘Moshulu Smile Scale’, will encourage more people to actively do more to get others beaming from ear to ear. Whether that’s holding the door open for a stranger, giving a friend a compliment or writing a nice note to a loved one, these small things are what brighten the everyday. We’re on a mission to boost smiles everywhere!”
Other things that are guaranteed to spark a grin include receiving a discount at the till (39 per cent), finding a fiver down the back of the sofa (38 per cent) and a stranger holding the door open (37 per cent).
Hearing a baby laugh or seeing them smile (37 per cent) and seeing an old couple holding hands (32 per cent) also made the list, along with finding a parking space in a car park (19 per cent).
Among the daily smile triggers was having the TV remote control to yourself (21 per cent) and getting through traffic lights just before they turn from amber to red (15 per cent).
The moment when someone with a full trolley of shopping lets you go in front of them at the till also ranked highly (32 per cent).
Reassuringly, our partner or spouse is most likely to make us smile, with children a close second. The family dog made third place followed by our friends and co-workers. The cat, our best friend and our parents also made the list.
And we’re not backwards in coming forwards when it comes to rating our own smiles – a confident 52 per cent said they felt they had a ‘nice smile’.
The key to a good smile, according to those polled, is a grin that shows genuine warmth and friendliness. We’re savvy to a genuine smile, with 89 per cent being able to spot one when they see one.
But while four in ten typically tend to smile with a closed mouth, a fifth opt for an open mouth and closed teeth grin, while 17 per cent go for a full open mouth, open teeth smile.
Smiling at others makes us feel happy (69 per cent) with 1 in 10 feeling generous when giving out smiles. As well as instilling happiness, receiving smiles gives us a range of positive feelings, including warmth (28 per cent), being liked (28 per cent), accepted (22 per cent) and reassured (14 per cent).
Dr Jessamy Hibberd explains: “Smiling has a huge amount of real value – recognised by more than 90 per cent of us – and, when the number of times you smile every day is added up, it can have great benefits to overall happiness.”
Shaun Fulls concludes: “We’d like to see more people sharing a smile and so over the coming weeks, Moshulu will be using the research to implement a few surprises that we hope will make our customers smile. This could be anything from giving away a Moshulu treat in store to putting extra goodies in their online orders.”