In this ongoing climate of political unrest, it’s nice to see that news outlets have taken some time to focus on what really matters – appearance. While most male politicians attempt to promote a squeaky-clean image, enhanced by a clean-shaven look, some of the higher-ups are currently sporting political beards. Are the beards good? Are they bad? The answers to those questions are subjective. Our biggest question is: Do they have a perfect smile under the facial hair?
Politicizing the Perfect Smile
One of the most notable newly bearded politicians, Senator Ted Cruz, has been criticized in the past for the lack of a Duchenne smile. For those unfamiliar, a Duchenne smile is when the corners of your mouth and cheeks are raised, crow’s feet form, and your smile reaches all the way to your eyes. People who “smize” like this look more genuine – or, as we like to describe it, people who do the Duchenne aren’t afraid to show their teeth.
Ted Cruz’s weak smile rubs some people the wrong way, but maybe there’s a reason he can’t smize it up – he’s not confident about his teeth. We don’t see his teeth very often. In photos where his teeth are visible, his enamel appears to be a little stained, the teeth a little crooked. He doesn’t, in other words, have the pearly whites of someone like former Vice President Joe Biden who, although free of facial hair, is never short of a big, toothy, Duchenne smile.
Is Cruz’s beard enough to make him more likable or relatable? Maybe. We would argue that an authentic smile would be even more helpful. It isn’t difficult to get teeth white and straight with porcelain veneers, or a combo of teeth whitening and Invisalign.
Presidential Facial Hair and Smiles
In generations past, presidents were known for their facial hair. Some of the most famous beards in political history:
- Abraham Lincoln, with his beard but no mustache.
- Chester Arthur, for his serious Franz-Joseph sideburns.
- Benjamin Harrison, with his lengthy beard.
- Grover Cleveland, with a hefty mustache.
- Teddy Roosevelt, with his memorable mustache.
- William Taft, for his notable handlebar mustache.
Since Taft, however, facial hair has been noticeably absent. However, toothy smiles have gained ground. Presidents from Kennedy to Nixon, Carter to Reagan, Clinton to Obama are known for smiling while showing their teeth.
The old boys’ club may have been serious. These days, though, smiling – professionally, no matter what kind of career you have – is a good thing, even in politics. Some might say, especially in politics.
Embrace Facial Hair and a Good Smile
Sporting facial hair is no longer considered lazy, or even disrespectful. It’s not a sign of skipping the morning shave, it’s a deliberate style choice. Hipster beards are awe-inspiring, especially when the boldest of the bold decorate them with glitter, bows, and other baubles.
Go for scruff if it’s your thing. Some men simply look better with facial hair. Every man, however, looks better with a perfect smile. Instead of your beard accessorizing your look, your smile will be the excellent accessory for your beard.
Get the teeth you’ve always wanted and perfect your unique look. You may sport a hipster beard in Williamsburg, but that doesn’t mean you can’t have natural-looking teeth from a Midtown dentist. Contact Dr. Michael J. Wei in his Midtown Manhattan office on Madison Avenue to schedule your appointment today.