Summary: Rather than trying to remember a face in its entirety, researchers say focus on the ears and specific facial markings like freckles, moles, or scars, to help build facial recognition skills.
Rather than focus on the face holistically—which is the usual way the human brain processes faces—participants were directed to look at two specific areas of the face that turned out to be the strongest diagnostic features.
“By looking at the ears and facial markings like moles, freckles and scars, people can boost their natural ability in this task, with training that lasts just six minutes,” lead researcher Dr. Alice Towler says.
“It turns out that breaking up a face into parts—like a jigsaw—is a useful strategy when matching unfamiliar faces. This is something that only a small number of face recognition professionals have been trained to do.”