Like the fedora, seapunk and Hitler youth haircuts, beards, according to science, are less attractive the more popular they become. Who’s to blame? Let’s take a look back at some of the culprits:
Yesterday, the Telegraph published a study that claims Planet Earth has reached “peak beard.” Turns out, as facial hair becomes a bigger part of mainstream fashion, it gets less and less attractive. Why? Because one too many basic bros decided they’d dip their toes into beard-dom, which was previously exclusive to Jake Gyllenhaal and that guy you always made eyes with on the L train in the summer of 2008.
But those were the days when November was just another month out of the year, Matt Lauer’s facial hair hadn’t yet spurred a billion trend pieces and the world was innocent of the most disturbing plastic surgery phenomenon we’ve ever heard. Now, it appears women are over it:
After being shown a succession of pictures of bearded men, women consistently rated clean-shaven men more attractive, researchers at the University of New South Wales found.
Equally, women who were shown a series of pictures of clean-shaven men tended to find those with beards more attractive afterwards.
Think of it this way: In Game of Thrones, the men with beards aren’t especially attractive (unless your name is Kit Harington), they’re just average. But the clean-shaven ones (with the exception of Joffrey…) stand out.
What might be the most interesting tidbit the article implies is that all those studies that claimed to provide scientific proof that beards were naturally more attractive to women were kinda bullshit. Like most measures of sex appeal, culture is the most important determining factor for what we find attractive, not “evolution,” no matter what lame Netflix documentaries say.
But on whom can we pin the blame? Al Roker? Brad Pitt? Prince Harry? Brooklyn itself? No: The real culprits for co-opting the facial hair best associated with our borough and turning it into a staple for all bros in their sophomore year Urban Outfitters stage are professional athletes. Because if there’s anything that says “it’s okay guys, no homo,” it’s the Red Sox.
Follow Rebecca Jennings on Twitter @rebexxxxa