December 2022
Volume 22, Issue 14
Open Access
Vision Sciences Society Annual Meeting Abstract  |   December 2022
Colour predictors of facial preference differ in Caucasian and Chinese populations
Author Affiliations
  • Yan Lu
    Leeds Institute of Textile and Colour, University of Leeds, UK
  • Kaida Xiao
    Leeds Institute of Textile and Colour, University of Leeds, UK
    School of Electronics and Information Engineering, University of Science and Technology Liaoning, China
  • Jie Yang
    Leeds Institute of Textile and Colour, University of Leeds, UK
    School of New Media, Beijing Institute of Graphic Communication, China
  • Michael Pointer
    Leeds Institute of Textile and Colour, University of Leeds, UK
  • Changjun Li
    School of Electronics and Information Engineering, University of Science and Technology Liaoning, China
  • Sophie Wuerger
    Department of Psychology, University of Liverpool, UK
Journal of Vision December 2022, Vol.22, 3121. doi:https://doi.org/10.1167/jov.22.14.3121
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      Yan Lu, Kaida Xiao, Jie Yang, Michael Pointer, Changjun Li, Sophie Wuerger; Colour predictors of facial preference differ in Caucasian and Chinese populations. Journal of Vision 2022;22(14):3121. https://doi.org/10.1167/jov.22.14.3121.

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      © ARVO (1962-2015); The Authors (2016-present)

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Abstract

The impact of colour characteristics on facial preference has gained much attention in recent years. With various colour characteristics being examined individually, it is unknown how these characteristics taken together would affect facial preference and what are the most important colour predictors in determining that preference. In this research, colour characteristics including average/local skin colour, skin colour variation, and facial colour contrast were measured using non-manipulated images of both real Caucasian and real Chinese faces. A rating study was conducted, using both Caucasian and Chinese observers, to obtain preference evaluations including facial attractiveness, perceived healthiness, and visual age. We first made a comprehensive examination of the relationship between the various colour characteristics and facial preferences. We then, using multiple regression analyses, evaluated and compared the importance of different facial colour characteristics in predicting each of the three separate preference attributes. On the one hand, our study revealed a moderate role for colour characteristics in determining facial preference within an evolutionary meaningful parameter space. Although the averaged skin colour of facial areas played a limited role, together with colour variation and contrast, there were stronger links between colour and facial preference than previously revealed. On the other hand, different facial colour cues were found to be utilized by different observers according to the different preference attributes they were accessing. Generally, Chinese observers tend to rely more heavily on colour cues to judge facial preference than Caucasian observers. The results highlighted the importance of examining various facial colour cues to obtain the full picture of colour predictors utilized in facial preference evaluation and also demonstrated the cultural difference between Caucasian and Chinese observers.

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