SOURCE: Durham University, news release, May 12, 2015
THURSDAY, May 14, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Men may be regarded as angry and aggressive when they wear red clothes, a new study suggests.
"We know that the color red has an effect on the human brain. This is embedded in our culture, for example the idea of wearing a red tie -- known as a 'power tie' -- for business, or issuing a red alert," said study co-author and doctoral student Diana Wiedemann, of the department of anthropology at Durham University in England.
Findings from the small study might have you rethinking your wardrobe choices for certain situations, she said in a university news release.
For the study, researchers showed 50 men and 50 women images of men in different colored t-shirts. Participants rated those in red as more aggressive and angry than those in blue or gray.
While men also tended to consider men wearing red to be dominant, women did not, according to the study published May 12 in the journal Biology Letters.
"The implications of our research are that people may wish to think carefully about wearing red in social situations and perhaps important meetings, such as job interviews," Wiedemann said in the news release.
"Being perceived as aggressive or dominant may be an advantage in some circumstances but a disadvantage in others, for example where teamwork or trustworthiness is important," she explained.
Previous research by Durham University investigators found that wearing red in sports promotes aggression and competitiveness.
The study authors suggested that this reaction to red is possibly related to the role of facial reddening as a natural sign of anger.
The American Psychological Association offers anger control tips.