There isn’t much that makes a bigger first impression than a good masculine voice. While you can’t see it, your voice is something that is one of the first things that people notice when meeting you. Together with the handshake it’s a huge part of the first impression you give off. You want to be perceived as masculine. How can you make that happen?
The following questions will be answered in this post;
- What makes a voice masculine?
- How much can you change?
- What to do?
For further information on outward masculinity, check out the following posts;
- How to look more masculine [7 Tips]
- What makes a man masculine?
- 9 Confident Masculine mannerisms and body language
- 8 things confident men never do.
What makes a voice masculine?
Before we can say HOW to make your voice more masculine, we first have to know WHAT makes your voice sound masculine. If we don’t know the “what”, it’s impossible to go in the right directions.
There are two things that make up a voice. Sound and how you use it. Let’s see what makes those things masculine.
Obviously the first thing people think about when they think about a masculine voice, is the depth. Think of a manly voice. Chances are you are thinking of someone with a very deep voice.
So you can see that the average pitch of a man is quite a bit lower than a woman although there is a little overlap. The range is also quite big.
The deeper a voice is, the more masculine it is perceived. And as an added bonus, women also rate deeper voices as more attractive.
How you use it
The pitch is not the only variable though. How you use the voice you’ve got also has a big impact on how you are perceived.
There are a few variables to using your voice;
- How fast do you speak? There is a huge difference in perception of someone who speaks fast vs. someone who speaks slow.
- Speaking fast makes you seem insecure. Speaking slower makes you seem more in control and by extension more masculine.
- How much variation is there in the pitch of your voice. People don’t speak at a single pitch all the time. They vary the pitch based on their mood, energy levels and what they’re saying at the moment. Also in different settings you use different variations. In a Business meeting, you use your voice in a different way than when telling a story to children.
How much can you change?
With some work, how much can you expect to change your voice?
Once your vocal chords develop in puberty, there is not a whole lot you can do to change them. Imagine your vocal chords as the strings on a guitar. Make them tighter and the pitch gets higher and vice versa. Unlike a guitar, there isn’t a tuning peg on your vocal chords you can turn to change the pitch.
On the other hand, you have much more control over how fast you speak and the pitch variations. These can have a big impact as well.
That doesn’t mean there isn’t anything you can do at all though. Most people will be making at least some mistakes that are impacting their voice. Correcting these mistakes can make a pretty decent impact on how you sound.
All changes you make will be relative to where you start off. Not everyone can become Barry White. While you can’t really change the natural pitch of your vocal chords, there are some things you can optimize to make the most of your voice.
Want to become more masculine on the inside as well? Check out; The Masculine Mindset
How to change your voice?
So what can you actually do to make your voice more masculine? Here are some things that might help you. They might take some time and effort but if you keep at it, you’ll see success. Keep in mind that all progress will be relative to where you start from.
1. Don’t force it
First off, don’t force your voice to sound much different than comes naturally. If you force your vocal chords to work outside their normal frequency range, it can have detrimental effects. There is a possibility that you damage your vocal chords if you force your voice too much. This won’t happen quickly but it can over time.
If you’re forcing your voice, chances are it doesn’t sound natural either. Sounding unnatural will not help you sounding more masculine.
Also, you’ll have to stay on top of it at all times. If you forget to force your voice for a moment, it will be quite surprising to your listening.
2. Speak up. Deal with what you’ve got
Nothing says inconfident like someone mumbling. You have something to say, say it! Speak up. Not many things are as frustrating as having to listen to someone who’s hard to understand.
It’s better to use the voice you have well than not using it at all. You might feel insecure about the voice you’ve got. Get over it. By all means try to create a voice you’re comfortable with but, not using your voice because you’re insecure about it makes the problem so much worse.
Accepting and becoming comfortable with the voice you’ve got is one of the best things you can do. It might not be the perfect voice but it’s yours. When you feel comfortable with your voice, you will speak with more confidence. People will react to this more than the actual sound of your voice.
3. Speak slower
Most people should slow down their speaking. Maybe you’ve got a lot to say but speaking faster isn’t doing you any favors in the way of appearing masculine. Speaking quickly makes you look insecure and stressed. It makes you look like a hunted animal not the hunter.
Slowing down a little also gives you some opportunity to think more about what you are saying and pay attention to some of the other point of using your voice.
- Take a breath after every sentence. This creates some natural pauses for people to process what you’ve said.
- Increase the time between your words. If you’re naturally speaking very quickly, imagine. There’s. a. period. After. Every. Word. Don’t breathe or make any other noises in between.
- Another thing you can do is to stretch out the stressed syllable of every word slightly.
- It takes some practice to get it right. You don’t want to sound like a robot. Record yourself speaking if necessary. You might hate to hear yourself speak in the beginning but you’ll hear very quickly what you have to improve.
4. Stay hydrated
When you don’t drink enough water, your vocal chords turn into little raisins. OK maybe not that extreme but you get the point.
Dehydration makes your vocal chords lose volume and tightens them up. This makes your voice higher and squeaky. So if you know you’ve got an important event coming up where your voice is important, drink! And if you’ve got an event where you have to use your voice for an extended period of time, make sure you’ve got some water within reach.
Who knows more about a voice than singers? They might not necessarily be aiming for a deep voice but, they know how to get the voice they want. What do they do? They do some warm up exercises before performing. Loosening up and warming up your vocal chords is important.
Check out a list of great exercises here (Click)
Breathe from your diaphragm. Before speaking breathe deep into your belly a couple of times. 5 seconds in, 5 seconds out. This relaxes you, your muscles. Breathing into your chest means you have less air to project your voice and it will likely sound more nasal.
You want your abdomen to move while breathing not your chest.
7. Reduce pitch variation
Pitch variation is very important in how your voice is perceived. Interestingly, a voice with less pitch variation is perceived as deeper than the same voice with more variation.
The most obvious example of this is Clint Eastwood. His voice isn’t actually that deep. His way of speaking makes it seem much deeper than it actually is. I don’t think anyone will deny that Clint Eastwood has a masculine voice.
Neck posture is something you might not think about immediately when thinking about voice. The way you carry your head, has a similar impact as your neck strength. Many guys have a posture problem known as “nerd neck” or forward head posture. Besides making you look bad, it also has an effect on your voice.
By putting your neck in the forward position, it puts extra tension on your vocal chords since you have to flex some of your neck muscles. Think back to the guitar, more tension means higher pitch.
Fixing your head posture will improve your voice and improving your posture in general is great for a multitude of reasons.
9. Neck strengthening
Neck strength is related to the previous point about neck posture. Stronger muscles will likely improve your posture if done right. Stronger muscles will also have to flex less for the same result. Again, less tension means a lower pitched voice. It also has the added bonus of giving you a bigger neck which makes you look stronger.
Keep in mind it will take a while before you will see results. In the beginning your voice might even go up a little. That’s because when you start training a muscle, it needs time to recover. During this time the muscle is actually weaker until it’s recovered.