Study Shows Beauty Is Aggregate--not Separate Features

Buttock and Breast Augmentation (NYC), Park Plaza Plastic Surgery New York (NY)

As part of their drive to create catchy headlines that will hopefully inspire clicks--or sell magazines and papers--media outlets commonly misrepresent scientific studies, and the articles describing a recent study by researchers from Australia, Hong Kong, and China are no exception. Consider, for example, this Daily Mail headline: "It's not legs or breasts that make men go weak at the knees--to catch a fellow's eye, show a bit of arm."  And went on to say that "long shapely arms . . . are considered more attractive than endless legs." However, before you go out and sign up for arm lengthening surgery. the study showed nothing about baring arms, and its results prove more than the importance of a single feature.

Instead, the study, published in the Journal of Evolutionary Biology's September issue, focused on testing whether sexual selection for attractiveness is governed not by one or two simple ratios, but by a more complicated nonlinear selection system. They showed how a nonlinear response surface model outperformed every individual ratio, including waist-to-hip, age indicators, and body mass index (BMI) in predicting how men and women rated the attractiveness of models. One of the advantages of the model is that it is able to incorporate abdominal contour with bust size and other factors to give a sense of how men and women judge attractiveness, whereas many previous studies only looked at one or two specific features.

The study highlights again the importance of working with a doctor who has a good sense of the proportionality of beauty. The goal of procedures like breast augmentation and tummy tuck, while focusing on specific features that are important to beauty, is to create a more proportionate overall form.

To learn more about how plastic surgery can help your overall appearance, please contact New York plastic surgeon Dr. George Lefkovits today.