Clothing color value and facial expression: Effects of evaluations of female job applicants

Mary Lynn Damhorst1, J. Ann Pinaire Reed2
1Iowa State University, United States
2The University of Texas at Austin, United States
Cite this article:  Damhorst, M., & Reed, J. (1986). Clothing color value and facial expression: Effects of evaluations of female job applicants. Social Behavior and Personality: An international journal, 14, 89-98.

Volume 14 Issue 1 | e491 | Published: February 1986 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.2224/sbp.1986.14.1.89

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Color value (light vs. dark) of clothing and facial expression (smiling vs. serious) were varied in photographs of 6 female job applicants. Male and female business persons (N = 208) judged the photographs on 14 semantic differential scales. Facial expression significantly affected evaluations of character-sociability characteristics. Clothing color value was more important in influencing perceptions of potency, i.e., competence and boldness, but only for male interviewers. Results indicate that clothing color may have significant but not substantial impact on hiring decisions made by male business persons..
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