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Mirror experiment shows people are often their own harshest critics

Stare into the looking glass and what do you see?

BuzzFeed arranged an experiment where a few young adults got a chance to look into the mirror and speak candidly about their appearance on camera.

What the participants didn’t know, however, is that there were a few people on the other side who were gathering first impressions of each of the experimentees. Both sides could not hear each other during the experiment.

The video has garnered more than 1.1 million views on YouTube since being posted last month.

What the clip shows is that people often look at themselves and first notice their imperfections, while worrying about how they’re viewed by others. The group behind the two-way mirror, though, was much more complimentary of the insecure Millennials than they were of themselves.

A few days later, those who had to stand in front of the mirror were invited back to watch film of the comments from the other side. They seemed relieved, if not elated, to hear such praise.

“The mirror lies, man!” as one of them says in the clip. “Yeah, don’t trust the mirror.”