What Jennifer Lopez and Ben Affleck's Steamy PDA Means, According to A Body Language Expert
Even though their reunion has been rumored since the spring, Jennifer Lopez and Ben Affleck made it crystal clear during the multi-hyphenate's birthday weekend in late July that the sequel to "Bennifer" has officially arrived. While celebrating her 52nd birthday aboard a luxury yacht in St. Tropez, Lopez nearly broke the internet after sharing a series of stunning bikini photos with her Instagram followers. Nestled at the end of her epic photo dump was a shot of the beauty mogul kissing 48-year-old Affleck — seemingly confirming that the mega-watt couple of the early aughts is officially back on, nearly 17 years after their initial split.
But one photo of a passionate kiss wasn't all "Bennifer 2.0" admirers got to snack on during Lopez's luxurious birthday weekend. As images of Lopez and Affleck's PDA-filled adventure continued to spread across social media, fans were also left drooling after the duo appeared to recreate the infamous butt-grabbing scene (you know the one) from Lopez's 2002 music video for her chart-topping single, "Jenny from the Block." Modeling an orange-and-yellow Valentino bikini (Buy It, $650, valentino.com) this time around, Lopez was seen lounging on her stomach while Affleck placed his hand on her well-earned peach. (Related: The Psychology of Getting Back with an Ex, According to a Relationship Therapist)
Although Lopez had recently — and artfully — dodged questions about her sudden surge of happiness, it's clear that she and Affleck could not keep their hands off one another during her big weekend. Not only did Lopez and Affleck sing along to "Jenny From the Block" at a St. Tropez nightclub (!), but they engaged in even more public snuggles aboard the yacht, according to People. Communication and body language expert Karen Donaldson gave Shape the scoop about what these cozied-up vibes might mean about the couple's chemistry and potential longevity the second time around.
"As Ben kisses J.Lo, you will see that his head is tilted to the right," explains Donaldson. "When someone tilts their head to the right during a kiss, it tells us that it's heavily romantic — that means that they're highly interested in being your romantic partner. For right-handed people, the left side of their face expresses more emotion than their right (and vice versa), therefore exposing their left side as they kiss."
She added, "Both J.Lo and Ben's eyes are closed as they kiss, which tells that they're blocking out everything else going on around them, that they want this moment to last, and they're only focusing on kissing each other." (Related: Jennifer Lopez and Ben Affleck Are Reportedly "Starting to Talk About" Their Future)
As for those paparazzi photos of Lopez and Affleck getting cozy aboard the yacht, Donaldson indicated that the two seem to feel safe in each other's embrace. "In this image, Ben pulls and holds J.Lo in his intimate space — his fingers are interlaced with one another as he hugs her," she says. "If we have a close look at his fingers, they appear relaxed, which is telling that he is at ease with her. This gesture also emulates a safety rope — Ben has created a safety rope around J.Lo, with his arms, hands, and interlaced fingers, and the ease of this hold is also telling that he is ready and wants to be her safety rope." (Here's what relationship science can teach you about love.)
Even in the non-kissing shots, Lopez and Affleck are steaming things up. Donaldson notes that Lopez seems "extremely comfortable as she sits in Ben's embrace — her shoulders are relaxed which indicates her high level of comfort with and around him."
Then, of course, there are those yacht shots that were published Sunday by the Daily Mail. Donaldson said, "Ben's right hand sits on J.Lo's derrière, but his shoulder is held in an unnatural position which may imply that it was a staged photo," or simply that he was caught mid-movement.
What's more, "Ben's facial expression doesn't match the essence of the sensual act (placing his hand on her derrière)," she added. "Jennifer appears to be looking out somewhere else and not emotionally or physically connected to what Ben is doing. I would lean toward this being a staged photo." FWIW, it could be assumed that the duo totally played it up for the cameras on purpose — they know how to give the people what they want.
Based on their overall body language in the various photos, Donaldson believes the couple has "a high level of comfort and ease with and around each other. The 'let me impress you stage' might be long gone, but a deeper connection clearly exists between them." Of course, while no one but Lopez and Affleck know the inner workings of their bond, it's clear that these two share some sizzling chemistry. Fans will have to stay tuned to see what's in store for the couple — in the meantime, check out these relationship tips from divorce experts.