25 Fascinating Facts About Human Attraction and Beauty

Posted by , Updated on March 23, 2024

Do aesthetics play a significant role in life? Does physical attractiveness offer individuals an upper hand in normal day-to-day interactions and within societal parameters? Often, people avoid answering these questions sincerely, even though the truth sits heavy in our hearts: Physical beauty does count. In the realms of human magnetism and relationships, our looks often serve as our primary currency. Even though it might sound hackneyed, in most instances, good looks pave the way for opportunities that would otherwise stay unreachable. There may be occasional instances where attractiveness could turn into a liability, but these outliers only strengthen the overarching principle.

In a highly superficial and competitive society that worships and values good looks as pointed to in film and TV, the fashion industry, and numerous beauty pageants where beauty is pretty much the only criterion to advancement, being attractive is definitely a gift from nature. But you might be wondering: How have so many average-looking people made it to the top in their fields, when in some of these areas looks are particularly important? Well, hopefully the list of 25 Captivating Facts About Human Attraction and Natural Beauty below will help you see that looks might be of value but aren’t everything.





Men are more attracted to women whose bone structure is similar to that of their mother’s. Researchers call this “sexual imprinting,” which means that faces we find attractive as adults are usually the ones we were used to seeing when we were children.

mother and sonSource: spinfold.com, Image: pixabay.com

People may look more attractive when someone is drunk because the drunk person is less likely to notice the asymmetry of a face.

beer-glassesSource: http://www.todayifoundout.com/index.php/2014/06/people-look-attractive-youre-drinking/, Image: commons.wikimedia.org

Women perceive men with beards as having “the biological and social qualities that would enhance their value as husbands” and also consider them “more potent and more active, suggesting virility as well as physical attractiveness.”

handsome-man-with-beardSource: Looks: Why They Matter More Than You Ever Imagined, Image: https://pixabay.com/en/man-beard-eyes-handsome-madel-657869/

According to most online dating sites, it seems that women are most concerned with a potential partner’s height, while men are more concerned with their potential date’s weight.

online-datingImage: https://pixabay.com/en/man-woman-love-dating-email-949058/

Humans usually agree on who is and isn’t attractive, regardless of race, ethnicity, and culture. Researchers have noticed that attraction is not merely in the eye of the beholder, but that there are universal standards of attractiveness.

attractive-womanSource: Looks: Why They Matter More Than You Ever Imagined, Image: https://www.pexels.com/photo/lady-female-woman-girl-59657/

Researchers have discovered that women prefer masculine-looking men when they are ovulating, but at other times they seek men with softer features because they consider them kinder in terms of social behavior.

muscles with childSource: Looks: Why They Matter More Than You Ever Imagined, http://www.apa.org/monitor/2011/03/hormones.aspx, Image: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Machismo#/media/File:Tattoo_withchild.jpg

To the ancient Hebrews and Christians, physical beauty was a reward from God and ugliness was a punishment. In fact, physical attraction is mentioned a number of times in the Bible. For example, in 2 Samuel 14:25, it says, “Now in all Israel there was no one who was praised as much as Absalom for his good looks.”

ancient-hebrewSource: A Journey Through the Old Testament, Image: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hebrew_language#/media/File:Aleppo_Codex_Joshua_1_1.jpg

Believe it or not, but becoming attractive has become a profitable industry in most of the West, with $200 billion spent annually globally. This “industry” includes weight-loss programs, cosmetics, skin and hair care, perfumes and cosmetic surgery, among other products.

cosmetics-counterSource: trade.gov, Image: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cosmetics#/media/File:Life_Pharmacy_Westfield_Albany_cosmetics_2013.jpg

Women are usually more attracted to older men than they are to younger ones. Researchers explain that this is because men are capable of fathering children for nearly their entire adult lives, and older men typically have more resources.

Sean ConnerySource: Looks: Why They Matter More Than You Ever Imagined, Image: Wikipedia

In most cultures, males find younger females more attractive than older ones, mainly because women are able to reproduce for only a limited time.

harrison_ford_and_calista_flockhart_at_the_2009_deauville_american_film_festival-04Source: Looks: Why They Matter More Than You Ever Imagined, Image: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Calista_Flockhart#/media/File:Harrison_Ford_and_Calista_Flockhart_at_the_2009_Deauville_American_Film_Festival-04.jpg

Dr. David Buss, an evolutionary psychologist, recorded mating preferences for more than ten thousand people from thirty-seven countries and cultures and concluded that a woman’s looks was at the top or near the top of every man’s list.

Dr. David BussSource: The Evolution Of Desire: Strategies of Human Mating, Image: http://liberalarts.utexas.edu/psychology/faculty/profile.php?id=bussdm

In order to become more beautiful or to maintain their beauty during the Middle Ages, wealthy and noble females would swallow arsenic or dab bat’s blood on their skin to improve their complexion.

arsenic-bottleSource: The beauty business: Pots of promise, Image: https://pixabay.com/en/bottle-medical-pharmacy-1503898/

Aristotle was one of the first people who realized and recorded the importance of human attraction; he noted that “personal beauty is a greater recommendation than any letter of reference.”

Aristotle and Alexander the GreatSource: brainyquote.com, Image: commons.wikimedia.org

TV news producers will usually report on the case of an attractive victim rather than an average-looking individual.

news-vanSource: Gendered Media: The Influence of Media on Views of Gender, Image: https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:WOOD-TV_News_Remote_Van_Novi_Michigan.JPG

To a child, physical attractiveness is often associated with being smarter and friendlier. That’s why when a child picks their friends, they usually go for the smarter and kinder ones.

boy and girlSource: parents.com, Image: pexels.com

Attractive politicians typically receive more news coverage than less attractive ones.

Enrique_Peña_Nieto_-_World_Economic_Forum_on_Latin_America_2010Source: nytimes.com, Image: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Enrique_Pe%C3%B1a_Nieto#/media/File:Enrique_Pe%C3%B1a_Nieto_-_World_Economic_Forum_on_Latin_America_2010.jpg

Someone who is accused of raping an unattractive victim is less likely to be found guilty than one accused of raping an attractive victim.

fist-violenceSource: Looks: Why They Matter More Than You Ever Imagined, Image: https://pixabay.com/en/fear-woman-stop-1131143/

Physically attractive people tend to have better-paying jobs in higher-level positions than their less attractive counterparts. This preference is usually referred to as “beauty bias.”

attractive-professionalSource: Looks: Why They Matter More Than You Ever Imagined, Image: https://pixabay.com/en/laptop-woman-coffee-breakfast-943558/

Researchers suggest that a highly attractive woman is perceived as less capable of meeting a job’s requirement concerning its masculine qualities than an unattractive woman.

fashion-1063100_960_720Source: Mysteries Of Women Hidden Treasures, Image: https://pixabay.com/en/fashion-beauty-model-portrait-girl-1063100/

A study has shown that college students tend to rate their teacher’s performance more on the basis of physical attractiveness than on their ability to communicate.

teacherSource: http://www.lookstein.org/online_journal.php?id=198, Image: https://pixabay.com/en/smiling-teacher-female-college-1280975/

The offspring of a couple in their thirties or even older tends to find mature faces more attractive than a child born to parents in their twenties.

woman-with-childSource: http://www.fitpregnancy.com/pregnancy/pregnancy-health/does-age-really-matter, Image: https://pixabay.com/en/mom-daughter-woman-girl-lady-kid-863055/

Birth control pills can affect both a woman’s hormone levels and to whom they are attracted.

birth control pillsSource: http://time.com/3596014/attraction-sex-birth-control/, Image: commons.wikimedia.org

Men with more masculine characteristics are linked to having higher testosterone levels, being more aggressive, and having higher-than-average divorce rates.

Jason StathamSource: Looks: Why They Matter More Than You Ever Imagined, https://dima.stefantsov.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/02/urovni-testosterona-chto-vliyaet-na-testosteron.pdf, Image: https://www.flickr.com/photos/tonyshek/6929604553

Regardless of how many sexual partners someone has been with, the more attractive a new sexual partner is, the less likely a person will be interested in using protection during sex.

couple-in-grassSource: http://www.sciencealert.com/mens-willingness-to-use-condoms-might-depend-on-how-attractive-their-partner-is, Image: https://pixabay.com/en/snow-white-print-march-love-story-1478801/

Teachers expect better-looking students to perform better than the rest of the class; a fact that often leads to less punishment and better grades.

Source: http://www.alfiekohn.org/article/degrading-de-grading/, Image: en.wikipedia.orgSource: http://www.alfiekohn.org/article/degrading-de-grading/, Image: en.wikipedia.org

Photo: 10. By <a rel="nofollow" class="external text" href="https://flickr.com/people/15237218@N00">World Economic Forum</a> - Copyright originally posted to <a href="//commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/Flickr" class="mw-redirect" title="Flickr">Flickr</a> as <a rel="nofollow" class="external text" href="https://flickr.com/photos/15237218@N00/4500517377">Enrique Peña Nieto - World Economic Forum on Latin America 2010</a>. Photo by Edgar Alberto Domínguez Cataño., CC BY-SA 2.0, Link