Masked emotions: do face mask patterns and colors affect the recognition of emotions?

Blazhenkova, Olesya and Döğerlioğlu Demir, Kıvılcım and Booth, Robert (2022) Masked emotions: do face mask patterns and colors affect the recognition of emotions? Cognitive Research: Principles and Implications, 7 (1). ISSN 2365-7464

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Previous research has shown that face masks impair the ability to perceive social information and the readability of emotions. These studies mostly explored the efect of standard medical, often white, masks on emotion recognition. However, in reality, many individuals prefer masks with diferent styles. We investigated whether the appearance of the mask (pattern: angular vs. curvy and color: black vs. white) afected the recognition of emotional states. Participants were asked to identify the emotions on faces covered by masks with diferent designs. The presence of masks resulted in decreasing accuracy and confdence and increasing reaction times, indicating that masks impair emo‑ tion recognition. There were no signifcant efects of angularity versus curvature or color on emotion recognition, which suggests that mask design may not impair the recognition beyond the efect of mere mask wearing. Besides, we found relationships between individual diference variables such as mask wearing attitudes, mask design preferences, individual traits and emotion recognition. The majority of participants demonstrated positive attitudes toward mask wearing and preferred non-patterned black and white masks. Preferences for white masks were associated with better emotion recognition of masked faces. In contrast, those with negative attitudes toward masks showed marginally poorer performance in emotion recognition for masked faces, and preferred patterned more than plain masks, perhaps viewing masks as a fashion item rather than a necessity. Moreover, preferences to wear patterned masks were negatively related to actual wearing of masks indoors and perceived risks of COVID.
Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Angularity versus curvature; Black versus white; COVID-19; Face mask; Face mask perceptions
Subjects: H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
R Medicine > RA Public aspects of medicine
Divisions: Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences > Academic programs > Psychology
Sabancı Business School > Marketing
Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences
Sabancı Business School
Depositing User: Olesya Blazhenkova
Date Deposited: 23 Jun 2022 12:11
Last Modified: 22 Aug 2022 22:17

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