This exploratory study investigates how consumers perceive age using objective and subjective approaches. It was found that younger graders rated subjects younger than their actual age. Conversely, older graders perceived subjects to be slightly older than their actual age. Results of this study suggest that when a subjective approach is implemented for age determination, subjects affix their emotions to the evaluation. The reverse logic was applicable for the expert and naïve grader methods. They did not harbor personal stances as they were not evaluating themselves. Finally, expert and naïve grader results appeared more neutral than the self-assessment as both groups were not swayed by the implications of an anti-aging prototype, whereas subjects may have been influenced after continued use to perceive a younger skin appearance (as a direct result of its assumed efficacy).
Age and Identity
Age is astutely classified as both a physiological and psychological aspect of one’s total identity. Physiological age is chiefly defined as one’s physical condition as affected by genetics and environmental stresses. These factors are not readily controlled by the individual. Conversely, psychological age relates more to how old one feels; that is, psychological age is tied closely to one’s emotional state, which is inevitably prone to fluctuation.