Special Report

What’s the Difference between Pathological Liars, Psychopaths & Natural Liars?

June 01, 2022 by Seppi Esfandi in Special Report  
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The Different Types of Liars

Every human being, at one point or another, has told a lie. Whether it is to protect someone’s feelings or avoid an uncomfortable situation, everyone tells a lie every now and then.

However, the frequency with which someone lies will depend on the type of liar they are. Some liars will usually lie more often than others. Some lie with remorse, while others have no feelings of guilt when lying.

In this article, we put liars into three different categories natural liars, pathological liars, and psychopaths, and try to figure out the difference between each type of liar.

Natural Liars

This is the type of liar we are most familiar with. Natural liars are simply people who have excellent lying skills. Think people like salesmen, actors or even lawyers. They can lie easily and show great success at being able to convince people of their lies. They usually lie often, so they have gained the confidence to come up with a good lie on the fly. Plus, they have also mastered their emotions, facial expressions, and body language to ensure they do not have any distinct tells that may signal an individual they are lying.

Nonetheless, while natural liars may be very skilled at telling a fib. They are not devoid of any emotion. They do not lie simply because they can and have no malicious intent while telling a lie. They can fill guilty about the lies they tell and, in most cases, do not intentionally tell a lie to cause harm to another person.

Natural liars don’t necessarily believe their own lies, they’re just really good at lying.

Most natural liars usually use their skills to deceive to thrive in professions such as acting, sales, negotiating, espionage or politics.

Pathological Liars

You have probably heard at one time or another someone being described as a pathological liar. A pathological liar has become the go-to name for people when trying to describe someone who lies often. From movies to real life, when someone mentions a pathological liar, their minds automatically think of someone who lies often.

Pathological liars are prone to believing their own lies.

However, this does not fully encompass exactly what a pathological liar is. While it is true that pathological liar is someone who lies compulsively, they usually have no reason to do this. Most people lie because it benefits them in some way or another. Some people lie because they want to avoid blame, and others lie to protect another party’s feelings. But pathologic liars lie simply because they can. The lie serves them no clear benefit and yet they choose to do it anyway.

Plus, their lies can sometimes tend to be dramatic and exaggerated. They sometimes go over the top with their stories even if these lies would be easy to disapprove.

Pathological liars also are more prone to believing their own lies. This is because they can have a false sense of reality. Hence even when confronted with their lies, they get defensive and refuse to admit that they are liars.


Psychopathy is a personality disorder characterized by antisocial behavior, such as a lack of empathy, remorse, and truthfulness. Thus, it is no surprise that a person on the psychopathic spectrum is a good liar.

Psychopaths usually lie to exert their control and domination of others. Most of the lies they tell are meant to manipulate another party and get what they want. Most psychopaths believe they should get what they want, whenever they want and how they want it. Hence if they hit a roadblock, lying is just one of the tools of manipulations they will use comfortably to ensure they get what they want.

Psychopaths have no empathy or remorse, and lie to get their way or manipulate others.

Plus, since psychopaths usually feel little remorse for the lies they tell, it can be very hard to detect whether a psychopath is lying or not. This is what makes it possible for psychopaths to pass lying detection tests such as polygraphs.

You should also know that psychopaths do not have the natural capacity to lie like natural liars. However, they are better at learning how to lie.

How To Catch A Liar

With natural liars and psychopaths, you cannot depend on the natural cues used to catch normal lies since these types of liars know how to train their facial expressions to prevent them from getting caught for lying.

However, the are some cues that even the most talented and skilled liars cannot hide, and that’s micro-expressions. Micro-expressions occur even without the knowledge of the individual, which is what makes them the easiest way to detect natural liars, pathological liars, and psychopaths.

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3 types of liars infographic
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