staring contest

How to Win a Staring Contest

People often engage in staring contests to prove themselves better than a foe at keeping their eyes open and still for long periods of time.

Is there anything more exciting than a good old fashioned staring contest? Yes, there is. In fact, staring contests might be the most least exciting of any type of contest known to man because, by definition, the contestants are doing absolutely nothing. That’s not to say that they can’t be dramatic. Contests that go on for over one minute can become intriguing to the competitors and spectators alike.

How does one engage in a staring contest?

When two opponents engage in a staring contest, the first one to blink loses. While there are no hard-fast written rules about such contests, it’s extremely frowned upon to do something to cause your opponent to lose, like kicking him under the table, or spitting at him. The two contestants must simply lock eyes with each other and stay perfectly still until someone blinks. The winner can then parade around and claim victory.

Staring contest tips

  • Moisten your eyes first.
  • Get a lot of blinks out before beginning.
  • Make sure your phone is silenced or out of reach.
  • Make sure you’ve used the restroom before beginning. Having to pee during a contest might hurt your chances; on the other hand, it could be a good way to distract yourself from blinking.
  • Position yourself comfortably, whether that means the way you sit in a chair, or the position at which you’re standing.
  • Consider an intimidating look on your face that could possibly scare the other player.
  • Consider wearing glasses. The glass will prevent a fan from blowing straight into your eyes, thereby drying them.
  • Don’t open your eyes too far; they’ll dry out faster.
  • Zone out. Just drift off to a faraway land. You’re much less likely to blink.
  • Make sure there isn’t something bright or distracting in the background, like a sunset glaring through a window.
  • Don’t do anything else with your face if you think it would distract you more than the other person. Laughing or even smiling take your concentration off of your eyes.
  • On the other hand, if you’re confident that popping your tongue in and out of your mouth while remaining engaged eye-to-eye won’t hurt you, go for it! Maybe the opponent will break down and laugh and blink.
  • Above all, don’t think about closing your eyes; it will only make you want to do it more!

Few people practice staring contests, but if you were to make a point to practice daily in the event that a staring contest presents itself, you’ll be in far greater shape to win. It’s the same with anything, whether basketball, billiards, public speaking, or even doing your hair—practice makes perfect!

Bonus tip: try practicing in a mirror! Lock your eyes into your reflected eyes. You’ll never win, but you’ll also never lose.

My Hot Take

I wouldn’t be good at a staring contest. I have too many weird fidgety habits, and I wouldn’t be able to zone out.


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