Many performers overlook the importance of hydration when trying to conjure up tears on the fly.
Because your body won’t waste water to manufacture tears if you’re thirsty, drinking water — a lot of water – is a requirement for ever effectively crying on cue.
Try Everything but the Tears
Make a sobbing face, change your breathing rhythm to imitate the uneven and heavy breathing of a real crier, add whimpering noises… anything mechanical that someone would do when crying.
You can also do some light workout before the scene to make your breathing more natural. Practice crying in front of a mirror to see how you really seem when you’re upset.
The Staring Technique
Refraining from blinking is another strategy to reliably create tears.
While it can be difficult to resist, most individuals will spontaneously cry after around 30 seconds if they don’t blink, which you can use in a scene.
After 30 seconds, you should notice tears forming – and no one will be able to tell the difference.
Try laughing while covering your face with your hands or averting your gaze.
You can also rub your eyes with your hands.
Just make sure you’re not smiling when you take your hands off the table or turn around.
Stay Calm and Yawn
Yawning alone can sometimes give your eyes and face the sad look needed for emotional moments, especially if you yawn frequently.
The Menthol Method
Here’s a technique that professional actors commonly employ.
Menthol tear sticks and menthol tear-producing sprays are devices meant to induce tears and are frequently used by actors in movies and television shows.
Simply place them under your eyes and the residue will release menthol fumes, which will make your eyes wet. Just don’t use too much and avoid getting it in your eyes.
Chop the onion (Seriously)
Everyone knows how it feels to cry while chopping onions, and there’s no reason you can’t utilize this as a way to cry on command.
Chop it up and inhale the vapors from the freshly cut side, making sure to get some in your eyes.
Use the part of the onion near the end with the hair like strands: this is the part that causes the most tears.
Remove a hair from your nose
Michael Landon, who played Charles Ingalls on Little House on the Prairie, was frequently forced to cry, and it is reported that this was his preferred manner of eliciting tears.
However, be careful not to rely on this one too much, as it may leave you without a nose hair to pluck!