The Hugh Grant Effect


There are some individual with long face but with square jaws such as Hugh Grant.

This is when a child leaves their mouth open when they are little and then at later age learns to keep them closed due to becoming socially aware of self-appearance, essentially saving their face and keeping a relatively handsome appearance. With muscle tone they were able to square off the lower jaw and bring the chin tip forward.


“This has been a widely documented occurrence at puberty when youngsters, especially girls, become more self-aware and make an effort to improve their lip seal. Many research projects have recorded that there is often a spontaneous increase in horizontal growth around puberty, accompanied by reduction in the mandibular angle. However by this age his maxilla was well back and it was too late for increased closure alone to move it forward. As a result he developed a long face with mid-face retrusion but because the mandible matures later especially in boys his chin was quite well placed.” (John Mew)

As youngster John Mew developed nasal obstruction along with middle ear infection causing open mouth posture and vertical growth but as teenager learned to keep his mouth closed which squared off his lower jaw but keeping mouth closed was not enough to reverse the mid face retrusion.

If the child suddenly begins chewing tons more and practicing tongue posture it may be a different story, which is what we are trying to accomplish inside

At very young age, I also remember I got bad ear infection and nasal blockages which I believe lead to open mouth posture or it was the weak muscle tone leading to leaving mouth open and oral breathing which makes one more allergic forming a vicious cycle of more open mouth posture. Or some other factor that caused allergy and nasal blockage was the root problem, I am not too sure what that was, or which came first, or perhaps combination of all those factors.

“Interestingly, children who follow this type of growth like Hugh Grant or John Mew are (or become) rather firm minded possibly because they have the self-will to change their lives.” -John Mew

And this self-will may have been cultivated by intense emotions of first rejecting one’s own self image and then using the human will power to attempt to change that self-image. Hence the correction of posture from open mouth to closed mouth. Which could only spontaneously occur by the use of will power to change ingrained habits.


As you can see in above pic, his lower jaw is squared off, but cheekline is flat. It is subtle but notice Julia’s cheekline is more forward, face is shorter.

“if you begin chewing more and increase muscle tone your going to begin squaring off your lower jaw and start looking like Hugh Grant” -Mike Mew

To go beyond Hugh Grant and actually begin moving the maxilla forward, it will take combination of more chewing and tongue posture. Tongue posture is the factor we speculate is missing in these individuals that get Hugh Grant Effect.

The maxilla to certain extend resist masticatory forces. It is bit more challenging to make bone shorter than longer. But bone moves from light gentle forces, which is why the combination of muscle tone and tongue posture should be able to rotate the maxilla up and forwards over time.

  • a person that habitually wears a ring on their finger, creates a groove on the bone
  • inside the skull there are grooves etched into the bone from the veins

These are very light forces but it is there all the time.


Perhaps male model Atesh Salih shows us better place maxilla, compared to Hugh Grant’s profile the difference in cheekline is obvious.

It is doubtful that Hugh Grant spends everyday 2+ hours chewing gum or focusing on tongue posture. Social pressure to keep mouth closed may be enough to build enough muscle tone to square off the jaw, as keeping jaw closed is long term force by the masseter muscle. But as far as beginning to squash the whole face and make it shorter & wider, Me and Mike presume will take even stronger build of muscle tone and pushing the tongue posture.

Remember the monkey experiment in which increasing muscle tone squashed the whole skull, well those monkeys were not diseased individuals… meaning they most likely had good tongue posture to begin with.

Keeping the Jaw Shut


This boy continued to wear his biobloc stage 3 during the night, which all it did was to make sure his jaws were shut during sleep and look at the continued changes to his lower jaw from middle picture onwards. “He continued to change to achieve more movie-star look” his profile kind of looks like Atesh’s profile at age 15… all from continual closed mouth posture.

But now we are entering gray zones because we don’t understand what this boy’s tongue posture was like as that is difficult to measure, because if he was able to change from middle picture profile to age 15 profile with simply keeping mouth closed than shouldn’t Hugh Grant also have better profile like the boy?

  • perhaps Hugh Grant was still leaving mouth open more often versus a kid wearing stage 3 during the night which forces jaws completely closed… and this most likely will cause more increase in muscle tone than someone attempting to keep mouth closed when “socially aware”
  • By forcing the jaws closed during sleep, the tongue has no where to go but to try to rest on the roof of the mouth? I have noticed people switching positions during sleep and on the back the jaw tend to fall open in many people, while when switching to sleeping on the side the jaw closed back up.. if the jaws fall open of course tongue is lowered and if jaws are forced closed even during sleeping on the back, this means tongue needs some place to rest or it will slip into the airway… and you can’t posture the tongue between teeth like most people with relatively okay muscle tone because teeth are together with jaws forced closed, so the only place could be roof of the mouth.

Stage 3 biobloc is brilliant in this way as it ensures good oral posture even during sleep, however I do feel complete closed mouth posture is possible with great muscle tone without use of appliance. And the big question is could we see even more changes with even more increase in muscle tone from a meaningful shift in masticatory efforts each day?


David Gandy is yet another example of Hugh Grant Effect. Here is what Mike Mew had to say to above picture: “I call this the Huge Grant look, when he was younger he hung his mouth open and then decided to change, but did this by using his muscles to force his jaw up. I am guessing but sometime in early puberty. Consequently the section of his lower face has squared up, with the angles of his mandible becoming defined and the chin point coming forwards.

Also this has leveled the body of his mandible that is now almost parallel with the horizontal. Foreheads seem to vary between individuals as well and it is not always a clear indication although from the curvature of his neck his is suggesting that his head is tipped back.

Also it is important to remember that in the not so distant past a face with set down and back maxilla was only seen in the privileged groups. Like having white skin and being a little fat, these were attributes which were rare and considered attractive due to this. So there are some confounding variables here, and a noble face is often a face that has not grown perfectly. Notice the slight notch on his nose.” -Mike Mew

In male modeling world the most important feature seems to be the jaws as it gives sense of high achievers, and Gandy is more jaws than anything else so reeking with this aspirational image.

His face is not perfect, but because he is a male he can get away with such features like a prominent nose and in a modeling career where the intention is to capture attention some of these disfigurements can add character, a bit of interest, and become advantageous. More perfect faces may appear too generic…

And as Mike suggests such features were more rare in the past and features such as hook nose and bit of lengthened face like Hugh Grant were considered noble traits and desirable.


Compared to the past my lower mandible is beginning to square off, and this is one feature that has taken on definite noticeable changes as of late. As well as I had few readers send me their pictures of progress of their mandible squaring off. Now there still is anti-gonial notch which is indication that the maxilla is still quite a ways down and back.

Beginning of this month I wrote about breakthrough with tongue posture I had, and interestingly when I went to my monthly appointment last week on December 24th, Dr. Gibbs’ assistant (whom has been involved with orthotropics for a long while) asked me if I had gotten good at keeping the tongue on the palate, as she noticed big changes take place to my face last appointment in November but she noticed even bigger changes taking place this month.

Interestingly it was October 17th when I learned about the push advanced tongue practice and I felt I was starting to make some leaps of progress in my resting tongue posture, but my ortho assistant was confirming that there was bigger changes taking place than I thought as the changes to the face were noticeable exactly 1 month later which was around November 24th, the ortho assistant told me she has the benefit of only seeing me once a month so she is better able to take notice of the physical changes.

I had noticed some subtle changes but it is encouraging to get some outer feedback.

I had tried practicing tongue posture for months before this, but the significant change now is that I am now getting the posterior tongue up more consistently which seems to be the big key.

Difference in breathing

She also noted a difference in my breathing, that my breathing was once more shallow but now they were deeper and slower and I seemed calmer. Because she studies Buteyko Breathing Method she is tuned to these thing, and this is another interesting point as Buteyko Breathing has been invaluable and I feel that combination of great tongue posture leading to lip seal, my body is re-adjusting to nasal breathing which is increasing CO2 levels & giving better oxygenation. I used to get stuffed nose all winter long, with chronic congestion but now I breathe quietly and through the nose, both nasal passageway is clear which feels great. My breathing is leaps and bounds better than where I was at before starting this journey 2.5 years ago or even just 1 year ago.

Having the understanding of Buteyko Method sometimes I regulate my breathing and slow it down when I notice slight congestion taking place or when noticing heavier breaths like coughing, sneezing, sighing, etc. I will even take small breath holds (holding the breath) from time to time. Which is counter intuitive as most people when they feel congestion they try to blow their nose out which is heavy breathing, breathing out more CO2 and worsening the situation which is definitely what I was doing before.

These small practices which barely takes a second and its more like just having the awareness of it is enough, has kept my nasal passageway clear and my breathing slow and quite, & although its bit difficult to quantify I do feel calmer than the past. Buteyko Breathing is something I am very grateful to have come across, after years of struggling with congestion, I love having clear nose to breath from.


13 thoughts on “The Hugh Grant Effect”

  1. Yeah, this Buteyko stuff is amazing. Although my nose was never that blocked in the first place, it certainly was on occasion. I definitely notice a difference now that I have learned more about the Buteyko method.

    I do have a question about David Gandy, though. Although we talked about this in the forum a little bit, I’m still a little confused how David Gandy came out looking so good even with his flaws. You say he looks good because of his strong jaws, but I disagree. His jaws are somewhat rounded and unimpressive (for a top model that is). It’s his cheekbones and eye area which seem to be the most impressive. So these are developed my muscle tone as well? I thought the front cheekbones and eyes had more to do with tongue posture than muscle tone.

  2. great article.

    CP why won’t you use biobloc stage 3? Or are you just trying to accomplish everything naturally?

    Also about Gandy is agree that his eyes/side cheek bones are what make him attractive. He does have an impressive jaw though. But even though it looks like he has no front cheek bones, he most likely does because of how forward is maxilla is no?

    Also looking at the picture of the kid who wore the stage 3 appliance. It took about 7-8 years for his jaw to remodel so itd no doubt probably take longer since we’re adults?

    1. reverse extraction case like me is bit different from orthotropics that gets into stage 3 towards the end of treatment. Although because of my commitment to this process from being old enough to understand, I believe I have successfully transitioned to keeping my mouth closed during sleep without stage 3.

      his maxilla only appears to be forward because he is tilting his head. He had vertical growth but developed side cheeks after and leveled his mandible. This is the Hugh Grant Effect.

      Age 11 to 15 changes all happened with stage 3 wear, it may happen quicker in adults if we build stronger muscle tone through daily chewing. or not. hard to tell at this point.

  3. Also just throwing this out there but what if one were to sleep with somthing wrapped under their jaw around the whole head at night wouldn’t this kind of squish the face?

  4. Just to clarity, side cheekbones are capable of being developed by massive amounts of chewing without necessarily perfect tongue posture? Obviously tongue posture is important but moving the maxilla seems more difficult naturally after adolescence where muscle can be worked on equally no matter our age which piqued my interest in this potential area for development

      1. Hmm, I wonder why some people have completely flat borders while others tapered. For example, brad pitt may have good cheekbones, but they don’t protrude. Its just a straight line from his temples down to his gonial angle. Others have side cheekbones that protrude significantly more than the jaws. Why does someone like brad pitt (who presumably chews a lot) not have protruding cheekbones?

        1. to say brad pitt “chews a lot” is a relative perspective from the fact that general population don’t chew at all.
          I doubt that brad pitt even chews anywhere close to what our ancestors were doing. Especially if you go back to Ancient hunter & gatherer man that had 52 mm inter molar width and really protruding side cheekbones.

          1. Yes, I believe it is. The premise of this effect is change occurring due to the muscles not the growth.

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