Chronic bitchface

March 26th, 2011

Just doing my bit to spread awareness for this common, but little understood condition. Thousands around the world are affected by chronic bitchface, with sufferers having to endure being told to “SMILE” and “cheer up” by well meaning, but irritating strangers. There is no known cure.

(Prints of this are now available!)


  1. Quinn says:

    I have lived with this all my life. I have learned to deal with it. I was walking down the street the other day and a homeless guy who seemed to be in good spirits told me to smile… I was like, wow… chronic bitchface happens again!


  2. Yellow Rose says:

    Good to know there’s a name for this condition. I chalk my visage up to an engineering defect rather than mood when told to smile.


  3. Anna says:

    hahaha! I love this. The sad thing is that even in several of my wedding photos–even in wedded bliss–I suffer from bitchface. Has anyone offered a cure?


  4. […] illustrations by Kris Atomic, from Brighton, […]

  5. […] So now, I’m trying to do it. I’m trying to be friendly, and say hi. Because I realize that my affinity for C.B.F. may give the illusion that I’m not friendly. […]

  6. Mimi says:

    I have chronic confused face. I think it’s because when I pay attention I open my eyes real wide so I either look wildly bewildered or confused. Once went to a counselor to ask about transfer credits and she repeated herself 3 times because I kept nodding and opening my eyes real wide. People always look at me like I fell from the sky.


  7. Rachel says:

    this is one of the most wonderful things i have seen on the internet in a long time.
    so hilarious. so true. beautifully drawn.
    so much love to you and to all the women out there (including myself) suffering from chronic bitch face.


  8. selenology says:

    AKA “Angry Resting Face” or ARF.


  9. Amy says:

    I think I’m okay with having bitchface. Kidnappers are least likely to go for someone who looks like they’re going to be trouble. Lemme gain a little more weight and I can travel in relative safety.


  10. elyse says:

    I had no idea there were so many other people out there! I work at a university so CBF is really hard because even when I’m speaking nicely to people they still think that I’m being a bitch and yell at me… at least CBF isn’t as bad as just being a Chronic Bitch.


  11. Catherine says:

    Oh I feel like I’ve found the place where I belong!!! When we’re out at a bar or wherever I inevitably have someone say “why aren’t you having fun” “are you ok” or tell my friends “your friend doesn’t seem to be having any fun.”. SO annoying!! I Knox know I suffer from Chronic Bitch Face…and I shall embrace it!


  12. Meadow says:

    You’ve struck a chord here. I’d always thought of it as “Angry Resting Face.” I’m glad to know the true appellation! ;-) Thanks for sticking up for us!


  13. sierra says:

    I have this affliction. I try to combat it by being extra friendly, but it’s exhausting.


    Daylight says,

    May 23rd, 2012 @ 8:16 am



  14. Patricia says:

    SOoooooooooooooo glad to know that there are others out there like myself. I’ve lost out on potential friends, possible job promotions and invitations to social events because of my CBF……I’m REALLY a nice person and once people get past the CBF and get to know the real me, we’re friends for life. Wish I could wave a magic wand and remove my chronic wrinkled forehead and frown lines so that I could show the world to real me. My doctor told me that the frown lines come from concentrating too hard on my work. Nice excuse, but it doesn’t solve the problem.


  15. Cory says:

    Finally. A place where I am understood! I, too, suffer from chronic bitchface and I don’t even wear glasses! It’s exhausting trying to always remember to keep my face “pleasantly neutral”! Thanks for the great illustration 😉


  16. angie bee says:

    So happy there’s a support group for this condition.


  17. Lotus says:

    Thank you for putting a name to this affliction! Everyone I’ve ever been friends with has told me that when we first met they thought I hated them. Sadly, this is when I hate my CBF the most. Alternately, when I’m out in public and I can tell that some creep-o jerk is about to hit on me, I know I can count on my CBF to make them go away. I love/hate my CBF. Thanks for raising awareness – now I just hope those creep-o jerks don’t find out my secret!



  18. […] of krisatomic’s amazing work here! My coin […]

  19. […] ago, it was a problem that had no name, but the perseverance of its sufferers and the ingenuity of artist Kris Atomic have finally put a bitchface to the name of this crippling […]

  20. […] I hung a couple of pieces of art, this food poster by What Katie Does is on the left and the Chronic Bitchface print by Kris Atomic on the right. I keep my cooking utensils in a jug that has been passed down to […]

  21. bonita says:

    OMG i knw exactly what ur talking about!i always got guys coming up to me in clubs telling me to smile n i got soooo angry !my friends soon started grabbing guys when they heard what they were saying and warned them to go away because i would rip into them in the end.i try to do a pleasant neutral but too hard work unfortunately my face doesnt want to go that way when im least im not alone thanks guys!!!


  22. Mrs. Pretty says:

    This is why i heart the internet – found you via Pinterest. I hereby nominate you as President of Chronic Bitchface International, so long as I can be Vice-President in Charge of Meeting Drinks, at which it will be understood that no one smiles.


  23. Olivia says:

    I think Fred needs a hug…


  24. […] I applaud lifestyle, fashion and other personal bloggers who do it every day. I also suffer from chronic bitchface (see above. I swear I’m really nice! Say hi if you see […]

  25. Dawn says:

    LOVE LOVE LOVE this!!! I get so sick of being told to “smile”!!!! I also have an 18 year old daughter whom I have had to coach on “puting on a fake smile” to help her get a job!! It is so tiring to have to put effort into a facial expression so people don’t think you’re a bitch!! So glad to know there are others out there with the same dilema!!


  26. Mark Perry says:

    I think this is very funny and I needed to smile so I thank you. Women don’t have the market cornered on bitchface cause I’ve got it but maybe it’s more sadface. My response is “I’m fine” by the way, what’s to be really happy about….outside of life itself. :)


  27. AP says:

    Yes! Lovely illustration :)


  28. You call that chocolate? says:

    Oh my days; I’m not alone!!

    I have loast count of the amount of times strangers have walked up to me to tell me to smile!!! It’s annoying, because most of the time I’m not in a bad mood, just deep in thought. My colleagues also have a go and make such a big deal about it. Ironically, I just wind up feeling self-conscious and less in a mood to smile!


  29. EBD says:

    This is funny. Tavi actually has a step-by-step guide to bitchface that I think you’ll enjoy.


  30. Daylight says:

    Kristina I love you


    oh god


  31. Danyogurt says:

    Im a guy who has chronic bitch face as well. People always ask me, “why do I look so serious.” Now there is a diagnosis for it and I have an excuse. Lol.


  32. kaylynn says:

    Today I was at the store buying some lunch when someone said to me, “you look so serious!” and I had to smile. I was not serious, only hungry, as I happily purchased some food. I ALWAYS get told that I need to smile or other girls think I’m giving them the “stank” look, when I’m really just walking around or admiring an outfit. *SIGH*


  33. Ellen says:

    It’s summer I want this print! Open up up the print shop! Please!


    kris atomic says,

    June 3rd, 2012 @ 11:53 am

    Hi Ellen,
    It’ll be open on the 11th of June!
    kris x


  34. BF says:

    Hooray! I have found my people! A little corner of the internet where we have something quirky in common…and had someone clever enough to crystallise it in a humorous form.

    Thanks for the cartoon, it has made my day.


  35. Sheryl Jensen says:

    I love the diagnosis’ name ;-) I have chronic “sad face” or “unhappy face” with a mouth that turns down at the corners…inherited gene. I want a “catchy” diagnosis name. I’m really a very happy person inside but unless I smile all the time, everyone assumes that I’m very sad or unhappy…any suggestions for a diagnosis?


  36. Olivija says:

    I always redirect people to this, because it’s the most apt way to describe myself! And, yes, I’ve had that exact line, too, and I’ve even had to google its meaning because I’ve no idea! xx


  37. T.K. says:

    Thanks for this post! I always thought I was the only one with the condition and tried to avoid public places.


  38. Rahul says:

    That’s absolutely wonderful! I almost laughed at it for 10 minutes ! I just loved it ! Thanks for posting ! Did u drew those sketches or they are image from some where else ?


    kris atomic says,

    September 20th, 2012 @ 7:23 pm

    Thank you! The drawing is mine :)
    Kris x


    Rahul says,

    September 21st, 2012 @ 7:36 am

    I ain’t an artist , but I feel you use similar kind of colors most of the time ,particularly bright and vibrant color. Any such reason of doing that ?. Is it because of the object you are doing so or you love those colors. But, beauty oozing from colors seems to express its true worth ! No doubt !


  39. Lowri says:

    haha, this has made my day! it also explains a lot…


  40. CARLO says:

    I’m a gay male with chronic bitchface. Gay bitchface may perhaps be the worst type of bitchface, it’s somehow more transparent. Two unfortunate things about it: first, I’m in theater, which if you have bitchface immediately brands you as difficult, and secondly it’s quite often involuntary, but when it is voluntary is when I really get in trouble because it’s far worse than I imagine it to be. I hope I’ve found a support group here :)


  41. […] I applaud lifestyle, fashion and other personal bloggers who do it every day. I also suffer from chronic bitchface (see above. I swear I’m really nice! Say hi if you see […]

  42. Katie says:

    I really am a happy person and I like to smile but my relaxed face is straight. People have called me snobby because of my face before. A girl in one of my previous classes who I had only talked to on one or two occasions said she hated me because I thought I was better than her. I DON’T THINK I’M BETTER!! It is hard living with this sometimes because people always misunderstand you


  43. Jes says:

    Yes! Thank you! I finally have a name for this affliction other than “this is just how my face looks!”


  44. Nicole says:

    THIS IS ME!!!! I usually look like I want to KILL someone if I am not smiling, but that’s just how my face looks naturally! I now have a name for my affliction. :)


  45. Beeray says:


    That is what a random customer called me a work one day.

    She came up to me and told me I look like a sourpuss and that If a handsome man came into the store I woudn’t attract him because of the look on my face.


  46. […] Atomic, she of ‘Chronic Bitchface‘ fame, talented illustrator and long-time internet pal has just released something so […]

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