Impact of face proportions on face attractiveness

J Cosmet Dermatol. 2018 Dec;17(6):954-959. doi: 10.1111/jocd.12783. Epub 2018 Oct 5.


Background: Proportions of face components appear to play a role in facial attractiveness.

Aims: The aim of the study was to establish the best proportions of face components in relation to whole face shape for facial attractiveness.

Methods: Only one face component (eye, nose, or lips) of a model in a series of photographs was altered using a computer program. Alterations consisted of size reduction or augmentation by 5% or 10%. Each photograph depicted a particular face component altered to either 90%, 95%, 100%, 105%, or 110% of its original size. Collages of photographs were shown to 167 individuals (male and female) for a fixed period of 7 seconds. Their task was to indicate the most attractive photograph of a model in a presented collage.

Results: In total, 48.1% of individuals preferred enhanced eyes both in males and females. We found that the preferred mean eye size in women was statistically significantly higher than that in men. In total, 64.8% of respondents preferred reduced nose proportions in women (27.5% found a reduction to 90% of the original size more attractive while 37.3% preferred a reduction to 95%). It was demonstrated that the preferred mean nose size was statistically significantly lower in females in comparison with males. Respondents expressed a greater preference for nose reduction in women in comparison with men. 38.4% of respondents (in regard to both male and female mouth) preferred reduced mouth. 40.7% of respondents preferred reduced mouth in the female model.

Conclusions: Our work delivers statistically significant evidence that facial attractiveness increases together with the enlargement of the uncovered eye surface as well as the reduction in nose and lip size. Data were obtained using modern collective intelligence methods of validation. Written consent was obtained from all study participants.

Keywords: attractiveness; eyes; face; mouth; nose; proportions.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Beauty*
  • Eye / anatomy & histology
  • Face / anatomy & histology*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Lip / anatomy & histology
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Nose / anatomy & histology
  • Photography
  • Sex Factors
  • Young Adult