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A new face recognition method based on Mahalanobis distance and Support Vector Machine (SVM) using skin color information is proposed. According to face skin color distribution in YCbCr color space,The Mahalanobis distance map of the image is obtained and use Independent Component Analysis (ICA) to extract features and establish Eigenfaces space. A novel SVM method is proposed based on loop-symmetrical division for solving multi-classification problem. This algorithm is loop-arranged and symmetrical divided classes of multi-classification problem, and constructed error-correcting codes matrix. The class of an unknown sample is obtained by the decode function based on error-correcting codes matrix. Experiment shows the new face recognition method is effective.