Main Article Content

Hiu Tung Tiffany Leung
Joanna Wincenciak


First impression, Facial Trustworthiness, Stereotype, Attitude, Experimental Psychology


Purpose: Both facial appearance and behaviors could respectively contribute to impression formation towards an indi- vidual. However, when there is congruence between information decoded from facial appearance and behaviors which may determine impression in different ways, effect of both factors will be altered. This study aimed to investigate the discrepancy between the information carried by the face, i.e. facial trustworthiness and social description, and how these two factors influence individuals’ attitude towards a newly-met person, and their judgment with regard to warmth and competence.

Methodology: An experiment was conducted, asking participants to rate their impression in terms of warmth and compe- tence towards an individual whose facial appearance was manipulated either to be trustworthy or untrustworthy, and whose behavior was described in a short vignette.

Main Findings: The results indicated that social description had a significant influence on both warmth and competence impressions. Facial trustworthiness had no effect. It was also discovered that competence was found to be generally judged more positive than warmth, which implied judgment of warmth was made more reservedly.

Implications: The study would serve as an antecedent to further investigation on managing people’s impression towards oneself, in which such management aids in developing and maintaining positive personal relationship amongst human beings. The study will demonstrate a new vision to the researchers in cognition and perception on exploring approaches to define the mechanism involved in impression formation or attitude.

Novelty: Researchers trust that currently there is still no related research that would determine the direction and strength of effect from facial trustworthiness and social description.


Download data is not yet available.


Metrics Loading ...
Abstract 176 | PDF Downloads 116 XML Downloads 0 ePub Downloads 8


Anderson, E. and Siegel, E. (2012). Out of Sight but Not Out of Mind: Unseen Affective Faces Influence Evaluations and Social Impressions. Emotion, 12(6):1210–1221.
Blais, J. and Forth, A. E. (2014). Potential labelling effects: influence of psychopathy diagnosis, defendant age, and defendant gender on mock jurors’ decisions. . Psychology, Crime & Law, 20(2):116–134.
Fiske, S. T., Cuddy, A. J. C., Glick, P., and Xu, J. (2002). A Model of (Often Mixed) Stereotype Content: Competence and Warmth Respectively Follow from Perceived Status and Competition. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 82(6):878–902.
Fiske, S. T. and Neuberg, S. L. (1990). A continuum of impression formation, from category based to individuating processes: Influences of information and motivation on attention and interpretation. In Zanna, M. P., editor, Advances in experimental social psychology, volume 23, pages 1–74, New York. Academic Press.
Greenberg, J., Solomon, S., and Pyszczynski, T. (1997). Terror management theory of self-esteem and social behavior: Empirical assessments and conceptual refinements. In Zanna, M. P., editor, Advances in experimental social psychology, volume 29, pages 61–139, New York, NY. Academic Press.
Jack, R. E. and Schyns, P. G. (2015). The Human Face as a Dynamic Tool for Social Communication. Current Biology, 25:261–634.
Lundqvist, D., Flykt, A., and Öhman, A. (1998). The Karolinska Directed Emotional Faces - KDEF (CD ROM). Stockholm: Karolinska Institute, Department of Clinical Neuroscience, Psychology.
Oosterhof, N. N. and Todorov, A. (2008). The functional basis of face evaluation. PNAS, 108(32):11087–11092.
Rowland, D. A. and Perrett, D. I. (1995). Manipulating facial appearance through shape and color. IEEE Computer Graphics and Applications, 15(5):70–76.
Sun, W., Wang, G., Jiang, Y., Song, Y., Dong, S., Lin, Q., Deng, Y., Zhu, Q., and Jiang, F. (2016). Six-month-old infant long sleepers prefer a human face. Sleep Medicine, 27(28):28–31.
Tiddeman, P. B., Perrett, D. I., and Burt, D. M. (2001). Prototyping and transforming facial textures for perception research.
IEEE Computer Graphics and Applications, 21(5):42–50.
Willis, J. and Todorov, A. (2006). First Impressions: Making Up Your Mind After a 100-Ms Exposure to a Face. Psycho- logical Science, 17(7):592–598.
Wilson, S. and MacLean, R. (2011). Research Methods and Data Analysis for Psychology. McGraw-Hill Education, Berkshire.
Xu, M., Run, Y., Wang, Z., Liu, J., and Tao, X. (2018). Saliency Detection in Face Videos: A Data-Driven Approach. IEEE Transactions on Multimedia, 20(6):1335–1349.