Effects of crowd on facial attractiveness judgement and adaptation
Date of Issue2017
College of Humanities, Arts, and Social Sciences
In everyday circumstances, we are seldom in isolation from our environment. Thus, the context inevitably biases our physical appearance. In this study, we investigated whether people appear more attractive or less attractive depending on the company they encounter. Experiment 1 investigated face attractiveness when an individual face appeared together with a crowd of faces. While Experiment 2 adapted subjects to a crowd of faces and then tested on their judgements of subsequently presented individual face’s attractiveness. Experiment 1 revealed the cheerleader effect where the presence of crowd increased an individual’s attractiveness, regardless of the attractiveness of the crowd. Subsequently, Experiment 2 revealed that when the individual appeared temporally after the crowd, the cheerleader effect diminished and contrastive aftereffects were found. Generally, after being adapted to an unattractive crowd, an individual’s attractiveness increased and after being adapted to an attractive crowd, an individual’s attractiveness decreased. These results suggest the importance of social context and how different encounters with a crowd would influence attractiveness perceptions differently.
Final Year Project (FYP)
Nanyang Technological University