8 Easy Ways How To Tell if Someone is Lying

Your Nose Grows When You Lie!
Your Nose Grows When You Lie!

Look Me in the Eyes and Say That!

Are you one of those people who suspects but is never quite certain when people are trying to 'put one over on you'?

Do you often wonder if that salesperson who tells you 'the car was only driven by a little old lady to church on Sundays' is yanking your chain?

Are you suspicious of but unable to prove that your partner may in fact be visiting a local pub when they tell you they are "at the library researching something to write about on Hubpages?"

If so you may find the following checklist helpful.

Overview: Liars and their Ways

Lying skills are certainly an example of how an individual can, in many situations,control how he or she is believed or not-believed, depending on their deception training. The non-liar, as such, needs, having watched a liar, and their expressions,their behaviour, their techniques, recognize the individual's facial and physical expression, based on their intention to decieve,and protect themselves from being hood-winked. In this world of 2012 it is essential to have such information at one's fingertips. This Hub will help you in your understanding and you will have more control over who can get away with lying to you!

Deer Caught in the headlights
Deer Caught in the headlights | Source

Eight Ways to Tell if a Person is Lying to You

1. The 'Self-Squeeze'

is the person holding themselves tightly, as though giving themselves a 'group hug '? ; clamping their hands between or underneath their legs; freezing into a ice-statue pose or generally just giving the impression of a 'deer caught in your headlights on a dark night'?

2. Constrictive Body Movements

-are they unexpectedly animated; excessively articulating things? Do they suddenly begin to blabber on, rambling as if they were being paid by the word, like someone on The Shopping Channel selling Zerkonian jewellery?


-do they appear to be too hot; opening their collar;wiping their hands, even though you are both sitting in a meat locker in your bathing suits at the time? (as unlikely a scenario as they may be...)

Lying body language.
Lying body language.

4. Looking Away

-does the person look everywhere but at you? Do they seem to want to avoid eye-contact at all costs, preferring to gaze up at the ceiling fixtures as if they were all of a sudden the most interesting objects on the planet?

5. Childlike Innocent Look

-does the person look sheepish and wide-eyed? Do they bat their eyelashes at a speed high enough to create a small breeze in your direction?

6. Looking Up and to the Right

-is the person looking just slightly up and to their right as they speak? If so this is evidence that their eyes are accessing a part of the brain that stores imaginative data rather than real memories of actual facts. It is also evidence of lying because you cannot tell the truth if you are simultaneously creating it!

7. Touching Nose

-also known as 'the Pinocchio Effect' this is when the person finds it necessary to lay a finger aside their nose, making it appear they have a longer nose than normal, hence the term 'Pinocchio'.

It should be noted that Santa also 'lays a finger aside his nose' but the difference here is that he uses it to levitate himself up the chimney, not to lie more effectively. Santa never lies, except when he is stealing cookies from the cookie jar and Mrs. Clause catches him...but that is another story.

Lying is indicated by placing hands over the mouth.
Lying is indicated by placing hands over the mouth.

8. Cover Face/Mouth

-finally does the person place their hand over their mouth or face? This is a very obvious clue that they, poor saps, are attempting to 'obfuscate by muffling', (the O.B.M. Effect) which has been known to fool almost nobody but is nevertheless attempted as a last ditch effort to wriggle out of a lie that has taken on a life of it's own.

And don't we all know that feeling?

Surely it is quite impossible to catch someone who is lying every time, however there are a number of clever methods to increase to some degree the chance of catching said liar. There are people who are born lucky, being able to naturally read people better than average. Such people should be considered wizards at spotting deception.

Experts tested over 15,000 individual and from out of the 15,000 subjects, scientists could just identify forty-six as "deception-wizards." These wizards can calculate how to tell if someone is lying far more then 80 percent of the time while other people have to learn from past mistakes to aid them smelling-out a liar. The majority of people try to be their own human lie detectors saying for example that the person is lying because he/she refrains from looking them in the eye. Yes, this could be possible, yet in some cases likely not true.

Study the art and become your own lie detector! Before you know it, people will be AFRAID to lie to you!


If you keep a copy of this checklist on a piece of paper and place it in your wallet/purse, you will have it handy to consult anytime you suspect someone is 'telling you a fib', giving you a 'cock and bull story' or otherwise concocting a tale that sounds like it is coming from the mouth of Richard Nixon rather than Mother Theresa.
Don't worry if they ask you what is on the paper. Just make up something.
Just lie.

Puppet of Richard Nixon the Lying President Who Was the Icon of what it looks like to be a liar.
Puppet of Richard Nixon the Lying President Who Was the Icon of what it looks like to be a liar.

Note to the Nixon Puppet Illustration

The 37th President of the United States of America, RICHARD NIXON, converted to "Pinocchio" (look at the shadow of his nose!) the famous puppet to which the nose grew every time lying. Shortly before having to resign as a result of the Watergate scandal, Nixon said: "I reject the cynical view that politics is a dirty business. People have got to know whether or not their president is a crook. Well, I'm not a crook. I earned everything I've got" (!) NIXON PUPPET by rizzato

Gallery of How to Tell if Someone is Lying (Liars)

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Fake smile indicates a liar.Lying eyes.cartoon of man with a Pinocchio nose. Romney speaking out of all sides of his mouth in a lie.
Fake smile indicates a liar.
Fake smile indicates a liar. | Source
Lying eyes.
Lying eyes. | Source
cartoon of man with a Pinocchio nose.
cartoon of man with a Pinocchio nose. | Source
Romney speaking out of all sides of his mouth in a lie.
Romney speaking out of all sides of his mouth in a lie. | Source

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Comments 21 comments

shubnell profile image

shubnell 8 years ago

Great info and delightfully done. I have met people that meet your criteria and they are easy to spot.

MamaDragonfly2677 profile image

MamaDragonfly2677 7 years ago from New York

Great hub! Although I have been in the presence of very experienced liars... The ones who have learned these basic rules, and make sure not to break them!

St.James profile image

St.James 7 years ago from Lurking Around Florida

I can tell you as a recovering addict... There are some folks who are very gifted liars. They can get you to believe even the most absurb things.

Let's not forget the old P.T. Barnum, "There's a sucker born every minute." Never under-estimate the power of easily finding and preying upon the gullible.

I am grateful I do not live this way today, but my mind sometime does wander, trying to figure out how I can scam the next person... That is a scary thought.

newsworthy 7 years ago

Ive heard that the military has ways to tell too.

Ladybird33 profile image

Ladybird33 7 years ago from Georgia USA

This is very useful in everyday life. I did print it out and will keep. Great tips!

Woody Marx profile image

Woody Marx 7 years ago from Ontario, Canada Author

Ladybird: Wow! What a great compliment! Thanks!

Woody Marx profile image

Woody Marx 7 years ago from Ontario, Canada Author

Ladybird: Wow! What a great compliment! Thanks!

dohn121 profile image

dohn121 7 years ago from Hudson Valley, New York

I really enjoyed this hub, Woody Marx and I'm NOT lying! I'm so gullible some times, I'll believe every word everyone says because I want to believe the best in people. Some say that the eyes never lie, but I'll introduce you to some people I know that will tell you otherwise! Thanks.

Woody Marx profile image

Woody Marx 7 years ago from Ontario, Canada Author

dohn: It is true...there are too many fibbers out there in this day and age...many on TV and popular media. It's important to know who is pulling your leg and who is just hemming your pants for you! ;)

gayathri 7 years ago

very interesting 2 find the liars.very easy and helpful.

dagnytaggert 6 years ago from Knoxville, Tn

I too am very gullible-- they say hope and kindness for your fellow man is good-- I am beginning to think it is actually food for the predator! I will take your hints here and keep them-- knowing me though I will forget I have them as I fall for the story being told to me!

Woody Marx profile image

Woody Marx 6 years ago from Ontario, Canada Author

dagny: well you can always put a positive spin on it and say you are 'innocent' instead of gullible. It sounds nicer. ;)

dagnytaggert 6 years ago from Knoxville, Tn

Okay-- I would love to say I am innocent but at my age i should know better. I think my favortie word is "Really?" But I am getting better. the worst place to find liars is out here on the internet. But for some reason i am better at seeing through the crap out here then i am in real person.. my emotions and compassion get in the way in real life!

Justin W. 6 years ago

It's worth noting that 4 and 6 are incorrect. For 4, liars actually make MORE eye contact than you'd expect. For 6, looking away, particularly diagonally, is a cue given that the person is thinking, possibly recounting memories. Liars do not typically give off cues of thought, but instead stutter once or twice as they rush quickly to spit out something, or even rephrase the question back entirely or delaying the answer by asking questions or otherwise.

kimberlyslyrics 5 years ago


and I think I shall pin a copy on the fridge [best use a magnet though]



Woody Marx profile image

Woody Marx 5 years ago from Ontario, Canada Author

kimberly: I think I should turn it into bumper-stickers, but what car has big enough bumpers? ;)

lyricsingray. profile image

lyricsingray. 5 years ago from the impossible


lovin it!

lyricsingray. profile image

lyricsingray. 5 years ago from the impossible

still kimberly btw

always forget who I am signed in as

not lying I swear!

lyny 5 years ago

how people think they know. haaaah...... i have seen many people who look you straight in the eye, are so super confident no deer caught in your headlights nonsense, yet they are the biggest lairs so what exactly are you telling us?

Woody Marx profile image

Woody Marx 5 years ago from Ontario, Canada Author

lyny: There are experts who can lie while looking you straight in the eye, but these people are generally criminal-mentality, and not of the 99% of people.

Keisha Hunter profile image

Keisha Hunter 2 years ago from Paradise and then some

Great hub, thanks. I'll certainly be looking out for some of these indicators in interviews.

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