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The effect of red color on perceived self‐attractiveness

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European Journal of Social Psychology

Published online on


Recent research showed that individuals are perceived as more attractive when presented with the color red. We seek to extend these findings by studying the effects of red color on individuals' perception of self‐attractiveness, rather than the attractiveness of others. Based on the color‐in‐context theory, we hypothesized that individuals would perceive themselves as more attractive under red chromatic conditions. In three experiments, participants were asked to wear a red or a blue shirt and rated their own attractiveness. As expected, participants in the red shirt condition indicated a higher level of self‐attractiveness than participants in the blue condition. Moreover, the results showed that the self‐perception red effect was mediated by the individuals' self‐perceived sexual receptivity and self‐perceived status.