According to a scientific study of attractiveness, ‘Plain Jane’ may have just taken on a whole new (evolutionary) meaning.
A study by Julien P. Renoult showed 169 men – with an average age of 39 – two sets of images of women and asked them to rate their attractiveness level.
Results showed ‘simpler’ faces were deemed more pleasing to the eye.
According to the study, the human brain is programmed to prefer things that are easiest, and quickest to process, which isn’t limited to face, but includes landscapes, and could actually explain the wide-spread use of emoji.
Furthermore, these preferences are not domain-specific, being expressed with faces, landscapes as well as simple abstract geometric forms.
This must mean that men prefer women without makeup, then, right?
University of Queensland School of psychology Professor Bill von Hippel told news.com :
My guess is lips and cheeks and eyes shaped in a prototypically attractive fashion are very easily processed themselves.
So if contouring or lipstick makes it a more prototypical face, I’d imagine that meets the definition of ‘simple.’
The study is one of many attempting to codify attraction, and while it did not take into account sexual orientation and different global ideas of beauty, it does add another layer of understanding what makes us attracted to one another.
Beyond the obvious, of course.