Extracting facial Feature is a key step in facial expression recognition (FER). Inaccurate feature extraction very often results in erroneous categorizing of facial expressions. Especially in robotic application, environmental factors such as illumination variation may cause FER system to extract feature inaccurately. In this paper, we propose a robust facial feature point extraction method to recognize facial expression in various lighting conditions. Before extracting facial features, a face is localized and segmented from a digitized image frame. Face preprocessing stage consists of face normalization and feature region localization steps to extract facial features efficiently. As regions of interest corresponding to relevant features are determined, Gabor jets are applied based on Gabor wavelet transformation to extract the facial points. Gabor jets are more invariable and reliable than gray-level values, which suffer from ambiguity as well as illumination variation while representing local features. Each feature point can be matched by a phase-sensitivity similarity function in the relevant regions of interest. Finally, the feature values are evaluated from the geometric displacement of facial points. After tested using the AR Face Database and the database built in our lab, average facial expression recognition rates of 84.1 % and 81.3% are obtained respectively.