What is a "Poker Face" in Poker?

Q: What is a "Poker Face"?

A: What exactly is a "poker face"?

When playing "live" poker (at a traditional casino, for instance), players need to be aware of the expressions that they are making while they are playing.

For instance - professional poker players will scan the faces of their opposition to try and get a "tell". A "tell" is a physical giveaway, so to speak, that indicates whether or not you like your hand.

For instance, if a player leans forward after the flop is dealt, this is usually a strong indication that they liked what the flop brought.

This extends to your facial expressions as well.

The meaning of the term Poker Face is discussed.  The King explains and illustrates its meaning.Let's say that the flop is dealt and you get a small smile on your face. That could be a pretty strong "tell" that you like your hand. A seasoned professional player will be looking for things like this, and they might throw away a fairly strong hand as a result.

In order to not give away these "tells", players need to work on their poker faces. This means remaining stoic, and looking exactly the same whether you like what is happening in a hand or not.

You want your expression to be the same every hand - professional players will work for hundreds of hours on this in order to make sure that they aren't giving up any "tells" to their opponents.

If you watch professional poker players, you will notice that the majority act the same every hand. Their facial expression never changes, they make the same motions to bet, they make the same motions to fold, etc.

The casual players, on the other hand, will wear their emotions on their sleeve, so to speak. If they like what is happening in a hand, their faces will light up, and they will clearly become more interested in a hand by leaning into the table, looking around at their opponents, etc.

A casual player that does not like their situation can appear disinterested or unhappy, and this provides a great opportunity to bet them out of a hand.


In short - a "poker face" is when a player remains emotionless and expressionless at the table, regardless of the strength of their hand.

If you want to be a successful live poker player, you should definitely work on your "poker face", or else your more seasoned opponents will be able to take advantage.

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