ドヤ顔 (どやがお, doyagao) is a casual Japanese word that illustrates a face you make when you show off your success or achievement. The equivalent English phrase is ‘a smug face’, but slightly different from ドヤ顔 in that ‘a smug face’ usually refers to a smirking face while ‘ドヤ顔’ can be either a smirking or serious, confident face. For instance, the moment you make a ドヤ顔 includes when you play a goalkeeper and make a fantastic save in a match; when you say ‘See? I told you.’ to your friends; and when you brag about your fine educational background to others.
To make a verb meaning ‘make a ドヤ顔’, you can say ‘ドヤ顔する’, or more casually ‘ドヤる’.
ドヤ顔 consists of the two words ‘ドヤ/どや’ and ‘顔(がお)’. The first word ‘ドヤ/どや’ is a Kansai dialect of ‘どうだ’, which sort of means ‘See?’ or ‘How was it?’ in English. Usually, it is used when you show off your success to others. For instance, when you have succeeded in something that your friends thought would never be possible, you might say ‘どや’ or ‘どうだ’ to them; however, it actually sounds a bit like acting or anime-ish. The second word ‘顔 (がお/かお)’ means ‘a face’ in English.
（ドヤッ）: Casual Representation of ドヤ顔 on the Internet
On the Internet, some people put ‘ドヤ’, ‘ドヤッ’, ‘どやぁ’ or stuff like that at the end of the sentence when they brag about something in a playful way. These expressions are often used with brackets and basically play the same role as the emoji of a smug face 😏.
Every time I say ‘Actually, I’m a graduate of Todai (The University of Tokyo)’, I cannot help making a ドヤ顔 (confident/smug face)’
Why the heck are you ドヤ顔して (making a smug, confident face) just because you happened to know the answer of the quiz?
I want to get 100 marks (full marks) in exam and ドヤる (make a smug face).
A: How was the exam? Wasn’t it a bit difficult?
B: Really? I thought it was sooo easy (ドヤ) ( = 😏 )
A: Damm you
Synonyms: 得意げな顔 (a smug face; more formal than ドヤ顔), 偉そうな顔 (a condescending face)
Synonyms in English: a smug face, showing-off face
Related words and phrases: ドヤ, ドヤる