Infographic: Why We Trust Certain Faces and Distrust Others

Smart celebrities know when to be in the spotlight and when to avoid attention. A master of finding this middle ground: Tom Hanks, our No. 1 scorer.

“We trust Hanks because we know that we won’t see his face in the tabloids,” says Robert Thompson, founding director of the Bleier Center for Television and Popular Culture at Syracuse University. “Hanks’s roles have also helped his reputation—his movies [Saving Private Ryan and Forrest Gump] are about the American adventure.” According to experts who study the relationship between traits and trust, Hanks may also have a biological advantage: his face shape.

Trust poll winner: Tom Hanks is America's most trusted manJordan Strauss/AP images

Sources: Karel Kleisner, Charles University, Czech Republic; facial-compositing expert Chris Solomon, PhD, University of Kent; Garnier Nutrisse survey; Erik Schlicht, PhD, Wellesley College; and Alexander Todorov, associate professor of psychology and public affairs, and Nikolaas Oosterhof, research specialist, Princeton University

Photo Credit: Jordan Strauss/AP images

Become more interesting every week!

Get our Read Up newsletter

how we use your e-mail
We will use your email address to send you this newsletter. For more information please read our privacy policy.