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The Most Honest States In The U.S.

The Most Honest States In The U.S.

Honesty is a tricky thing to measure. Most people would like to think they’re honest all the time, but even the most noble humans tell a white lie every once in a while. Nonetheless, Honest Tea has released something it calls the National Honesty Index–a ranking of states based on how honest people are when no one is around to see.

The scenario: unmanned kiosks selling Honest Tea beverages were set up for a week in cities throughout all 50 states. Buyers were asked to contribute $1, and unbeknownst to them, Honest Tea employees were actually watching their every move, recording details about the honesty of different groups of people (hair length, facial hair, hair color, etc.). So who was the most honest?

These were the top states:


Washington, D.C., West Virginia, and Texas rounded out the bottom of the list.

Some other results:

  • Women (95%) were more honest than men (93%).
  • People with medium length (93%) and long hair (94%) were more honest than people with short hair (91%).
  • Buyers traveling in groups (96%) were more honest than those traveling alone (91%), presumably because of the peer pressure.
  • Blondes (95%) were more honest than brunettes (93%), redheads (92%), and bald people (90%).
  • People with eyeglasses (94%) were more honest than people with sunglasses (93%).
  • Clean shaven people (93%) were more honest than those with beards (91%), mustaches (91%), and 5 o’clock shadows (88%). Beware the person with the 5 o’clock shadow, apparently.

Yes, this is little more than a clever marketing ploy. It’s also completely unscientific. But the Honesty Index is also a lot of fun–especially this tool that lets you compare your potential honesty to a friend based purely on physical features and location.

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