To be fair, reusing an old doll head is more eco-friendly than buying a new pot. It’s up to you whether or not it’s worth it. For us, we’ll take a larger carbon footprint in exchange for not being menaced by these tiny monstrosities found via #DollPlanters Instagram trend. If you wish to take part in this nightmare-inducing trend, but don’t have a creepy baby doll head laying around, you can purchase these planters from hell from various Etsy stores.
Why are dolls so creepy anyways? It begins with how we see faces at all. Humans pay special attention to them, and have done so since we were babies, and we are very good at it: it only takes us 170 milliseconds to recognize a face. In this rapid face recognition, our brains are not very picky. That’s why we often see faces in inanimate objects. Yet we must be able to discriminate faces worthy of our thoughts, feelings, and actions from false alarms that are not actually faces. Enter the dolls…
We already know the first stage: that a face is rapidly detected. But there’s another, longer process where our brains try to determine if a face has a mind. If the brain decides that face does, your attention stays with the face. If you deem something not to have a mind, then your attention wanes. And that’s where the creepiness can come in. With dolls your brain is searching for a mind and not finding one. But it’s getting a lot of the same cues (eyes, mouth, expressions) that it would receive in faces with minds. There are these signals that are telling our brain this thing is alive, but we know it is not alive. And that juxtaposition is really creepy.
Don’t have a creepy baby doll head? Not into DIY projects? These Etsy stores got you covered.