Face is the mirror of your soul, likewise, facial colors mirror your emotional state. Our faces mostly give away how we feel even with our slightest facial emotions. But a new study has found that even without the slightest of our change in facial emotions, we can convey our feelings through colors alone.
In general, we can identify our loved one’s feelings by their subtlest frown or a raised eyebrow even without speaking a word to him/her. This new study shows that it is possible to identify other people’s emotions only based on subtle color changes in their face almost 75% of the time.
The study segregated 100s of facial expressions into two color channels, a red-green channel and a blue-yellow one. Computer analysis showed that different emotions formed different color patterns which were identical irrespective of gender, ethnicity and skin tone. The study also monitored if individuals were able to guess emotions from facial expressions along with color or whether color alone was sufficient to convey the underlying emotion. To check this out, colors were super-imposed on neutral facial expressions and when the participants were asked to guess the emotion, the participants were able to guess 70% of the time when a photo conveyed happiness, 75% of the time when it conveyed sadness and 65% of the time when it conveyed anger. Even when vibrant colors were imposed on angry faces or subtle colors on happy faces, participants could identify the emotions or at least tell that something was different from the normal expression.
The researchers programmed an algorithm to recognize emotions and this algorithm detected human emotions much more precisely than humans- this algorithm detected happiness 90% of the time accurately, anger was detected 80% of the time correctly and sadness was found 75% of the time correctly. For example, disgust is characterized by a blue-yellow hue around the mouth and a red-green color on the nose and forehead. When analyzing the different colors corresponding to different emotions, researchers felt that these color patterns are due to changes in the blood flow or blood compositions triggered by the central nervous system.
Like we say, ‘red with anger’, ‘pink with pleasure’ or ‘turned white with fear’, facial colors denote different emotional states. Emotional health can affect our overall health and can also be rooted as the cause for mental disorders and stress-related problems, some of which are explained in detail at www.firsteatright.com. We blush when we are mentioned with the name of our favorite person, flush with anger or pleasure or turn pale when we experience fear or become frightened in some situations. A smiling person with red cheeks and temples (with a blue around the chin) is instantly branded as ‘happy’ but the same face with a slightly redder forehead and slightly lesser blue chin is branded as ‘surprised’. Such is the power of colors that can imply different emotions with the subtle changes in the shades and combinations.
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Dietitian & Nutritionist Dr. Nafeesa Imteyaz.