'Heightened state of stress': Body language expert on cripplingly awkward Melania Trump moment

Kristine Tarbert
Senior Lifestyle & Entertainment Producer

A body language expert has revealed Melania Trump appears to be in a “heightened state of stress” after a video of a cripplingly awkward moment between her and husband Donald went viral.

People flocked to social media after Melania’s deadpan response to her husband, the President of the United States, seemingly asking her to smile during a photo opportunity amid the protests currently sweeping the country.

Body language expert Suzanne Masefield tells Yahoo Lifestyle Melania was attempting to control her true feelings.

“Melania shows what we call a poker face, masking her truth feelings with little muscle movement in her face initially and her body is rigid,” Suzanne tells us, adding that in the ‘freeze, fight or flight scenario’ Melania appears to be in freeze “representing a heightened state of stress”.

“When her husband turns to her to speak to her she draws in breath, does a slight lip bite controlling her anger, followed by a facial micro-expression of disgust.

“All is not well in their marital world going by this interaction”

When it comes to Donald Trump, Suzanne says even his body language suggested insincerity and overconfidence.

“Trump gives a fake insincere smile for the cameras that doesn’t reach his eyes, then does a tongue jut which is often shown in card players when they think they’ve got away with something,” she explains.

“Followed by a micro-expression of contempt showing signs of overconfidence or superiority towards either his wife Melania or whatever he’s thinking about at that time. These gestures can also often be present when people have narcissistic tendencies where they believe the world revolves around them.”

Melania grimaces before her resuming her deadpan expression. Photo: Twitter

The US President and First Lady were touring Saint John Paul II National Shrine in Washington DC on Tuesday when they paused for photos.

Trump smiles for the flashing camera before appearing to mouth to his wife: “Can you please smile?”

In response, Melania more grimaces than smiles before her face resumes its deadpan expression.

The clip of the couple quickly went viral with people taking to Twitter to share their thoughts.

“Trump asking her to smile in front of press. The silent rebellion of Melania,” CNN reporter Tancredi Palmeri wrote.

“I hope she is okay. She looks nervous and unhappy,” another person said.

While a third asked: “Jokes aside, is she alright? She doesn't look it.”

The clip comes after the White House was slammed for a 'repugnant' video of another Trump outing, as police used teargas to move a peaceful protest group out of the way so Mr Trump could be filmed outside the church.

The campaign-style video release was not well received with many online calling it “embarrassing” and “repugnant”.

Got a story tip or just want to get in touch? Email us at lifestyle.tips@verizonmedia.com.