Brown eyed faces look more trustworthy than blue eyed faces

Researchers have found that the faces of the people with brown eyes look more trustworthy.

This research has been published online in the journal PLoS ONE.

Researchers in this study asked 238 participants, from both the genders with different colors of the eyes and shapes of the faces, to rate the male and female faces of 80 students for trustworthiness, attractiveness, and dominance on the basis of eye color and face shape. They found that the three measures correlated well with each other, so that if one scale is high the other ones also got higher ranking.

Brown eyes (Credit:

Researchers found that the participants viewed brown eyed faces as more trustworthy than the faces with blue eyes whether the faces were male or female, except the broad faces with blue eyes. Change in the shape of male faces show variation in the trustworthiness but the shape of female faces didn’t have much effect as they were considered more trustworthy than the male ones.

Researchers found that the participants rated rounded male faces, with bigger mouths and larger chins as more trustworthy as compared to the narrow ones.

To check, which of the two features are more important to rate the trustworthiness, researchers carried out another test. In this test, participants were presented with photographs except for one difference i.e. eye color. They found that both the eye colors were considered as equally trustworthy.

Researchers wrote, “We concluded that although the brown-eyed faces were perceived as more trustworthy than the blue-eyed ones, it was not brown eye color per se that caused the stronger perception of trustworthiness but rather the facial features associated with brown eyes.”


Kleisner, K., Priplatova, L., Frost, P., & Flegr, J. (2013). Trustworthy-Looking Face Meets Brown Eyes PLoS ONE, 8 (1) DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0053285

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