Trust and mixed signals: a study of religion, tattoos and cognitive dissonance

Andrew Richard Timming, David Ian Perrett

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)


This paper examines trust judgements in the context of ‘mixed signals’, whereby the medium through which a signal is projected suggests untrustworthiness, but the signal itself suggests trustworthiness. Under conditions of ‘mixed signals’, trusters are left in a potential state of cognitive dissonance. The results of the research suggest that the presence of a tattoo lowers evaluations of trust across the board, but that Christian respondents rated faces with a Christian-themed tattoo significantly higher than non-Christian respondents. Nevertheless, among Christian respondents, there was no significant difference on trustworthiness ratings between a Christian-themed tattoo and non-Christian-themed tattoo. The results of the research have implications in relation to the psychological study of trust, religion and body art.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)234-238
Number of pages5
JournalPersonality and Individual Differences
Early online date2 Apr 2016
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2016


  • Body art
  • Cognitive dissonance
  • Perception
  • Tattoos
  • Trust


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