Whether they’re a high-fashion runway model, or a swimsuit stunner, a model’s job is all about conveying a specific emotion or a concept through a single pose. Over the years, we’ve seen a number of top models rise to fame based on their signature pose, inspiring designers and fashion tastemakers alike with their interpretive moves. Like most things in fashion though, there’s a lot more than meets the eye when it comes to standout posing. Every hand on the hip and head tilt says something about the model and the image she is projecting in both her campaigns and her red carpet appearances.
When we heard about body language expert and New York Times best-selling author Janine Driver’s new book, You Can’t Lie to Me!, it got us thinking about the subtext of our favorite models’ poses, so we asked her to decode what their signature pose says about them. Seen recently sitting alongside TV pundits for CNN and Anderson Live, Janine has been busy as of late analyzing the body language of Presidential candidates President Obama and Mitt Romney, but today she’s sharing her expertise exclusively with Modelinia! From Gisele to Karlie and Alessandra, see what the human lie detector has to say about fashion’s top posers below!
And for even more insight into Janine’s expert craft, check out her new book, You Can’t Lie to Me!, on bookshelves now!
The one-sided “superman pose” in the first photo could come across as conveying attitude but Gisele balances it with her smile and her head tilt. Holding up the emblem of “peace,” Gisele does a great job of conveying likability and playfulness. By tucking her tongue behind her teeth while smiling in the second photo, Gisele could be seen giving a more warm and genuine smile. The right side head tilt is perceived to make the beholder look more attractive, like she needs any more beauty.
The exotic face of Adriana Lima is being handed over “on a platter” for us in both of these photos. While some would say giving a “cold shoulder” could have a negative connotation in the first photo, she balances out the negative with the playful expression she has on her face. This pose is literally saying “look at me, look at me.” In the second photo, her body is positioned so she is facing all power zones towards her audience. All the attention goes to her face, whenever you look at this picture.
In both of these photos, Karlie’s pose is a classic that conveys to onlookers, “I am confident.” We call this move with the hands in the pocket and thumbs sticking out the “James Dean.” Confident people are seen using this move because they are comfortable with their bodies. I personally like the one-sided the best. This pose demonstrates femininity and power.
This has “confidence” written all over it! Alessandra does a great job with the broad side display, which opens up her three power zones, and she also kicks her hip out to the side which shows likability— an “A+!” Alessandra looks stunning in both of these photos, but there is a slight problem. The placement of her hand on her bum in the second photo appears to be a little mechanical. Individuals who are nervous tend to produce mechanical movements. Also, her belly button is not directed towards where she is looking, this could be perceived as “she needs to head somewhere more important.”
This move of looking over your shoulder with a coy smile— a classic coined by Princess Diana— in the first photo, shows a likeability you would see in a child. It conveys an air or innocence. Izabel knows how to work her body to make herself look confident, but with an air of playfulness. In the second photo, the Princess Diana move makes her look childish, but balanced with the one sided Superman pose, it shows a powerful female. This move shows playfulness, innocence, and cuteness. With a very feminine figure, Izabel’s move is perfect to tone down her sexiness. I should start calling this the “Izabel move.”
Iman should be careful with the one-sided Superman pose. This move could be perceived as having an attitude, especially one foot stepped out front. She balances out the move with a slight head tilt, a kick out of the hip, and a wide smile.
Personally, Anja’s arms being relaxed and on her side is definitely her move that shows confidence. The only thing that concerns me is the width of her stance. She is in the “tall, skinny candle” stance, which is perceived as “easy to knock over.” In the second photo, Anja has her hands relaxed by her side and is standing tall. This move shows that she is not overcompensating to make herself look more confident or attractive. This pose signifies to the onlookers, “take me for who I am!”