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Does Beauty in design perceive us to think that a product is easier to use?

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“Aesthetic designs look easier to use and have a higher probability of being used, whether or not they actually are easier to use” (Lidwell, Holden, & Butler (2003)

We live in a society where first impressions play a large part in our long-term attitude to a product. As researchers Masaaki Kurosu and Kaori Kashimura found during a study of how people use computers at the Design Centre, Hitachi in Tokyo 1995. Designers should Make an effort not only to improve the inherent usability of a product but to also ensure that the the aesthetic aspect of the interface is appealing.

This is why Aesthetics are so important to consider when designing a subject.

Creativity block

According to Lidwell, Holden and Butler, unaesthetic designs create a more negative attitude as people tend to be less tolerant of design problems.

This negative relationship has been found to limit thinking and suppress creativity. While The positive relationship between a design and it’s user was found to promote creative thinking and problem solving.

“Such personal and positive relationships with a design evoke feelings of affection, loyalty, and patience.” (Lidwell, Holden & Butler 2003)

creativity freedon

Most of us use the internet on a daily basis, if not multiple times in a day, design aesthetics are largely responsible for how we navigate through a website. This is centered around having a Balanced Website Design (BWD). “There are three components that need to be considered carefully and comprehensively – aesthetics, usability and purpose” (Lawrence & Tavakol, 2007)

These are all elements which play a very important role in the long-term usability and success of any design. It is essential that we strive to achieve this positive relationship between our design and it’s user to help alleviate further fatigue and reduction in cognitive performance, already apparent through stress caused in our everyday lives.


Kurosu,M., & Kashimura, K. (1995). “Apparent Usability vs. Inherent Usability.” Conference Companion: 292-293.

Lawrence, D., & Tavakol, S. (2007). Balanced website design: Optimising aesthetics, usability and purpose. London: Springer.

Lidwell, W., Holden, K., & Butler, J. (2003). Aesthetic-Usability Effect. In Universal Principles of Design (pp.18-19). Massachusetts: Rockport.