University Study Concludes Hairstyles Make or Break Your First Impression

Evidence Reveals Different Hairstyles Are Linked

To Perceived Personality Traits



Feb 21, 2001, 00:00 ET from Procter & Gamble

    NEW HAVEN, Conn., Feb. 21 /PRNewswire/ -- Within three seconds of meeting
 you, people form a first impression about the type of person you are, and it's
 not your face that gives you away -- it's your hairstyle!  A recent study
 validates that your hairstyle dictates the first impression you make,
 significantly overpowering the impact of facial features.
     We all know how important it is to make a good first impression, whether
 you're looking for a new job, getting ready for a first date, or meeting the
 potential in-laws.  Your choice of hairstyle might project an image of
 intelligence and self-assurance, or one of insecurity and conceit, so make
 your style work for you.  If celebrities can change their hairstyles to play a
 part or make a statement, why can't you?
     Dr. Marianne LaFrance, director of the study First Impressions and Hair
 Impressions and Professor of Psychology and Professor of Women's and Gender
 Studies at Yale University, asserts that until now there has been no
 investigation of the unique effect hairstyle has on first impressions.  "We
 wanted to learn whether the frame around the face -- the hairstyle -- can
 significantly alter how a person is seen," says Dr. LaFrance.  "We found that
 different hairstyles quickly lead others to 'see' different kinds of people."
 First Impressions and Hair Impressions was commissioned by the team for
 Physique(R), a styling-based haircare line.
     So what does your hairstyle say about you?  Dr. LaFrance's study confirms
 that no style is all good or all bad, and that we do, in fact, judge a book by
 its cover.  The following key findings demonstrate that different hairstyles
 are linked to perceived personality traits.  Those range from positive
 qualities to the not so flattering:
 
     KEY STUDY FINDINGS FOR WOMEN'S HAIRSTYLES
 
     *    Can women have it all? -- It appears that this is not the case, as
          the study showed that any hairstyle (relative to base) increases a
          woman's perceived sexiness, but decreases a woman's perceived
          intelligence.  We wonder how stereotypes start.
 
     *    Short tresses = successes -- Women wearing short, tousled hairstyles
          (think Meg Ryan and Charlize Theron) are seen as the most confident
          and outgoing, an asset when meeting new people or starting a career.
 
     *    Does length matter? -- It is no surprise that women with long,
          straight, blond hairstyles, like Gwyneth Paltrow and Christina
          Aguilera, are perceived as the sexiest and most affluent.  By
          contrast, women with medium-length, casual-looking hairstyles, like
          Liv Tyler or Sandra Bullock, are viewed as more intelligent and
          good-natured.
 
     KEY FINDINGS FOR MEN'S HAIRSTYLES
 
     *    Who's the sexiest of them all? -- Men wearing short, front-flip
          hairstyles (think Brad Pitt and Matthew LeBlanc) are perceived as
          most confident and sexy.  It is not surprising that men with this
          hairstyle are also perceived as the most self-centered.
 
     *    Why Wall Street men walk tall -- Men with medium-length, side-parted
          hair are viewed as the most intelligent and affluent -- great for
          that job interview.  However, men with these styles are also seen as
          the most narrow-minded.
 
     *    Fabio ain't so fab after all -- Bad news for long-haired Fabio types.
          The study validates the myth that men with long hair seem to be all
          brawn and no brains.  They are perceived as least intelligent and
          most careless.  But all is not lost -- they are also seen as the most
          good-natured.
 
     "Working with Dr. LaFrance and her team last year (An Experimental
 Investigation into the Effects of 'Bad Hair,' January 2000), we confirmed that
 hairstyles have a profound psychological impact," says Diana Shaheen, North
 American Marketing Director for Physique.  "This year the Physique team
 commissioned the study to understand whether your choice of hairstyle impacts
 your first impression.  We now have clear evidence that hairstyle does
 dramatically affect first impressions and is linked to perceived personality
 traits.  You might even say, projecting the right image depends on creating
 the hairstyle that's right for you."
 
     Physique, from Procter & Gamble, is a hair care collection of products for
 men and women that is scientifically designed to help you create a volume,
 straight, curly or controlled style and keep it for 20 hours.  Physique is
 available at grocery, drug and mass market retail locations nationwide.  For
 more information, product samples or styling tips,
 visit http://www.physique.com.
 
 

SOURCE Procter & Gamble
    NEW HAVEN, Conn., Feb. 21 /PRNewswire/ -- Within three seconds of meeting
 you, people form a first impression about the type of person you are, and it's
 not your face that gives you away -- it's your hairstyle!  A recent study
 validates that your hairstyle dictates the first impression you make,
 significantly overpowering the impact of facial features.
     We all know how important it is to make a good first impression, whether
 you're looking for a new job, getting ready for a first date, or meeting the
 potential in-laws.  Your choice of hairstyle might project an image of
 intelligence and self-assurance, or one of insecurity and conceit, so make
 your style work for you.  If celebrities can change their hairstyles to play a
 part or make a statement, why can't you?
     Dr. Marianne LaFrance, director of the study First Impressions and Hair
 Impressions and Professor of Psychology and Professor of Women's and Gender
 Studies at Yale University, asserts that until now there has been no
 investigation of the unique effect hairstyle has on first impressions.  "We
 wanted to learn whether the frame around the face -- the hairstyle -- can
 significantly alter how a person is seen," says Dr. LaFrance.  "We found that
 different hairstyles quickly lead others to 'see' different kinds of people."
 First Impressions and Hair Impressions was commissioned by the team for
 Physique(R), a styling-based haircare line.
     So what does your hairstyle say about you?  Dr. LaFrance's study confirms
 that no style is all good or all bad, and that we do, in fact, judge a book by
 its cover.  The following key findings demonstrate that different hairstyles
 are linked to perceived personality traits.  Those range from positive
 qualities to the not so flattering:
 
     KEY STUDY FINDINGS FOR WOMEN'S HAIRSTYLES
 
     *    Can women have it all? -- It appears that this is not the case, as
          the study showed that any hairstyle (relative to base) increases a
          woman's perceived sexiness, but decreases a woman's perceived
          intelligence.  We wonder how stereotypes start.
 
     *    Short tresses = successes -- Women wearing short, tousled hairstyles
          (think Meg Ryan and Charlize Theron) are seen as the most confident
          and outgoing, an asset when meeting new people or starting a career.
 
     *    Does length matter? -- It is no surprise that women with long,
          straight, blond hairstyles, like Gwyneth Paltrow and Christina
          Aguilera, are perceived as the sexiest and most affluent.  By
          contrast, women with medium-length, casual-looking hairstyles, like
          Liv Tyler or Sandra Bullock, are viewed as more intelligent and
          good-natured.
 
     KEY FINDINGS FOR MEN'S HAIRSTYLES
 
     *    Who's the sexiest of them all? -- Men wearing short, front-flip
          hairstyles (think Brad Pitt and Matthew LeBlanc) are perceived as
          most confident and sexy.  It is not surprising that men with this
          hairstyle are also perceived as the most self-centered.
 
     *    Why Wall Street men walk tall -- Men with medium-length, side-parted
          hair are viewed as the most intelligent and affluent -- great for
          that job interview.  However, men with these styles are also seen as
          the most narrow-minded.
 
     *    Fabio ain't so fab after all -- Bad news for long-haired Fabio types.
          The study validates the myth that men with long hair seem to be all
          brawn and no brains.  They are perceived as least intelligent and
          most careless.  But all is not lost -- they are also seen as the most
          good-natured.
 
     "Working with Dr. LaFrance and her team last year (An Experimental
 Investigation into the Effects of 'Bad Hair,' January 2000), we confirmed that
 hairstyles have a profound psychological impact," says Diana Shaheen, North
 American Marketing Director for Physique.  "This year the Physique team
 commissioned the study to understand whether your choice of hairstyle impacts
 your first impression.  We now have clear evidence that hairstyle does
 dramatically affect first impressions and is linked to perceived personality
 traits.  You might even say, projecting the right image depends on creating
 the hairstyle that's right for you."
 
     Physique, from Procter & Gamble, is a hair care collection of products for
 men and women that is scientifically designed to help you create a volume,
 straight, curly or controlled style and keep it for 20 hours.  Physique is
 available at grocery, drug and mass market retail locations nationwide.  For
 more information, product samples or styling tips,
 visit http://www.physique.com.
 
 SOURCE  Procter & Gamble