15 Foolproof Ways To Spot A Liar

Is there a foolproof way to know for sure that someone’s lying? I mean, some people are just way too good at it. There has to be a better way than waiting for their nose to grow or forcing them to take a polygraph. A new book by Pamela Meyer promises to help you become a human lie detector. You’d better believe I’ll be picking up my very own copy of Liespotting: Proven Techniques To Detect Deception. After the jump, some dead giveaways, according to Meyer, to help you bust a liar and ensure you never get played again. Yes, friends, the truth shall prevail.

  1. Look for symmetry both in the face and in the body. Genuine facial expressions are usually symmetrical on both sides of the face. The same goes for body language. Gestures happen simultaneously with facial expressions when someone is telling the truth.
  2. The eyes really are the windows to the soul. Believe it or not, liars tend to make more eye contact for longer periods of time than truth tellers.
  3. A smile is worth 1,000 words. A genuine smile involves upturned corners of the mouth and a narrowing of the eyes revealing the appearance of crow’s feet. It’s easy to fake the mouth portion of the smile, but you can’t fake the eyes. Also, if someone smiles too much … beware. Liars use smiles to conceal other emotions.
  4. Even liars show feelings. People who are highly skilled at faking facial expressions or keeping a poker face still have genuine emotion that will shine through if they think they are about to get caught. Look for an expression of contempt when you are questioning them or even a little bit of delight at getting away with their lie.
  5. Check out the chin. If someone’s chin muscles are moving, it probably means they are faking an expression of sadness or anger. For genuine sadness, no chin is required.
  6. Listen for an echo. Liars will repeat your questions verbatim even though they clearly heard you the first time. As in “Are you lying to me?” “Am I lying to you?” You can end the conversation right there. You’ve got your answer.
  7. Can’t, don’t, won’t. Honest people like contractions; liars don’t. As in “I did not have sexual relations with that woman.” Yeah you did, Bill.
  8. On the defense. Does someone have a defensive tone with you where one seems unnecessary? They’re probably full of it. Ex: “Did you eat the last cookie?” “What do you mean by that?”
  9. Storytelling is an art that liars have down pat. Only not in the same way that honest people do. Liars tend to tell stories chronologically so they don’t get tripped up on the deets while honest stories focus more on emotion and tend to jump around chronologically. Also, liars’ stories tend to have long-winded introductions with very few details of the main event. Smoke and mirrors.
  10. A dishonest person is really careful with words. Listen for qualifying statements like, “As far as I remember” and “If you really think about it” or over-the-top denials like,” I have never cheated on anyone ever in my entire life.” Whatevs.
  11. If thou doth protest too much, thou art probably lying. Statements like “I swear to you” and “honestly” are dead giveaways.
  12. Personal space is important to all of us, but liars like lots and lots of it. If a person is slowly inching away from you or putting up physical barriers like a purse or a glass, they may have something to hide.
  13. Tap, tap, tap. Not only is foot-tapping uber annoying, but it’s a sign of someone caught in a sticky situation who probably wants to run and hide.
  14. Lookin’ stiff. Crossed arms, ankles, or hands, shrugged shoulders or general stiffness of the body can be a sign of discomfort and dishonesty.
  15. Which tic is not like the other? Everyone has their little nervous tics like face-touching, shirt tugging, or nail biting. Once you’ve identified a person’s tics, when you see one that is unusual, it can signify a big, fat lie.