Kissing a clue to personality

By Katy Guest

You must remember this: a kiss is just a kiss. But the way you kiss reveals a lot about the kind of person you are.

University research in Britain into how people relate to each other suggests the social minefield that is cheek-to-cheek kissing is about to become even more explosive.

Researchers studied hundreds of volunteers, and observed many more people kissing in public places, and found the way they kissed was a clue to personality.

About 80 per cent of men and women turned their heads to the right when moving in on their target.

The left-leaning 20 per cent minority are much "less emotional" than their right-thinking counterparts, says the research, to be published next month in the scientific journal Laterality.

"One theory is that by turning their head to the right, the individual reveals the left cheek which is controlled by the emotive right cerebral hemisphere," says Dr Julian Greenwood of Stranmillis University College inBelfast.

Since the first kiss was recorded, in Vedic scriptures in 1500BC, the dilemma of how, when and who to kiss has vexed the minds of nervous socialisers.

The Roman Emperor Tiberius banned kissing between 14AD and 37AD to try to stop the spread of the disfiguring disease mentagra.

As the etiquette expert on ITV's Ladette to Lady television show in Britain, Liz Brewer knows a thing or two about social kissing.

She says the best way to kiss is "heart to heart" - which means turning the head to the right.

Some say kissing does us good.

Last year, a team of German psychologists said people who kissed their spouses each morning would live five years longer than those who didn't.

Kissers also had fewer car accidents, fewer sick days and earned 20 to 30 per cent more than non-kissers.


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