The Intersection of Gender-Related Facial Appearance and Facial Displays of Emotion

Reginald B. Adams, Ursula Hess, Robert E. Kleck

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

64 Scopus citations


The human face conveys a myriad of social meanings within an overlapping array of features. Herein, we examine such features within the context of gender-emotion stereotypes. First we detail the pervasive set of gender-emotion expectations known to exist. We then review new research revealing that gender cues and emotion expression often share physical properties that represent a confound of overlapping features characteristic of low versus high facial maturity/dominance. As such, gender-related facial appearance and facial expression of emotions often share social meaning and physical resemblance. Thus, stereotypic and phenotypic information conveyed by the face are intertwined - sometimes confounded, sometimes clashing. We discuss implications of this work for gender-emotion stereotypes, as well as for emotion and face processing more generally.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)5-13
Number of pages9
JournalEmotion Review
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 12 2015

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Social Psychology
  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)


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