How to Maintain a Convincing Poker Face During a Game

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A woman playing poker with cards.

What does “poker face” actually mean? Simply defined, it’s a term used to describe a facial expression that conceals your genuine feelings or emotions, which is crucial when playing poker.

You might want to keep reading to learn tips and methods to enhance your poker face if your facial expressions are usually obvious, especially during tournaments.

The last thing you want to do is provide information about your holdings, which would give other players the advantage.

Poker face is a term that you should be familiar with if you’re a purist at heart and haven’t yet looked into how to play poker online.

You should generally pay additional attention to the behavioral cues, body language, and words when playing live poker and being face-to-face with your opponents.

While some could contend that players must develop this skill over time through practice, others might claim that when the stakes are high, they naturally put on a poker face!

Relax Your Face During a Poker Game

The first clue that could cost you a poker game is your face. A crucial aspect of the game is controlling your emotions and reactions to the poker hands dealt to you.

Any form of expression reduces your power when you’re up against an opponent. Think, twist your face muscles to release them, take a deep breath, and unwind.

If you’re too stressed out, you risk losing control of the situation, which is something you want to be able to do. Because no one knows what you’re thinking or going to do, concealing your reactions gives you power.

You may believe that the best way to confuse people is to alter your facial expression to convey various emotions. It isn’t. If anything, it could signal anxiety and a lack of confidence in your ability to win the game.

Reacting to everything and making odd faces might be a symptom of anxiousness and being disturbed, which is a dead giveaway and makes you look completely incompetent.

Blink Occasionally to Avoid Staring

Another way to lose your poker face is to stare out into space or concentrate too intently on your cards. Either you’re not paying attention or worried about your hand and its chances.

While focusing, remind yourself to blink so your eyes don’t dry out.

Avoid blinking excessively because it can be a sign of anxiety. It’s essential to strike a balance between blinking frequently to avoid gazing and maintaining visual focus to prevent your eyes from roaming around the place.

Overly intense staring can also cause your shoulders to slump and your posture to deteriorate. You may miss an important play if you concentrate too intently on one visual aspect.

Keep Your Lips Together and Jaw Relaxed

Your mouth primarily supports the muscles of your face, so any tension, grin, frown, or smirk will impact the other parts of your face.

Open and close your mouth a few times to help relax as well. First, relax your jaw by letting it go slack and allowing space to form between your back teeth. Do not expose your teeth. Visible teeth indicate that your mouth is moving, whether for a tiny grin or a grimace, and movement can identify you. Avoid clenching your teeth. The amount of strain on your teeth will be visible in your jaw.

When you know what’s at stake, it’s evident that this may be easier said than done. Purposefully keeping a calm disposition makes you less likely to react to unexpected developments and anything else that might be detrimental to your holdings.

Regardless of the hand you are dealt, you must keep your cool and maintain command of the circumstance. Being able to do this might be compared to having a superpower because it prevents your opponents from knowing what you might do next or what you are thinking.

Talk Less

Talking too much can occasionally be perceived as false bravado, creating odd facial expressions. People are typically bluffing when they try to strike up a conversation or speak excessively during a game.

People are widely believed to act strong when they are weak and act weak when they are strong. It’s a great skill to have if you can identify the difference between the two.

Be Confident

Confidence is demonstrated through maintaining eye contact and a comfortable posture. It implies that no one else needs to know that the chances are against you, even if you are aware of them.

Because of the ambiguity around your holdings, some of your competitors in a poker game may play more defensively. Their approach can lessen your chance of winning. They might then abandon their original plan, increasing your chances of defeating them.


Keeping your body relaxed and communicating calmly with other players are examples of having a good poker face.

When things are tense, this can be challenging, but it’s essential for playing the game. If you learn and use a few tricks, you’ll be able to relax your face and avoid unintentionally giving out crucial information through your body language. These few reminders will help you maintain a convincing poker face that you will need throughout the game.

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