Science explains the magic allure of pretty Faces
by FFE Relationship News Staff
There is a biological reason why Julia Montes and Kathryn Bernardo landed in the front cover of Yes! Magazine after topping the magazine’s list of 100 Most Beautiful Stars for 2013. According to a study on beauty published in Molecular Psychiatry, our brains are rewarded whenever we gaze at pretty faces.
To reach their conclusion, researchers tried to pin down how the μ-opioid receptors (MOR), the reward centres of the brain, work. 30 heterosexual men were invited to rate the beauty of a number of pictures that were flashed on screen. Before doing that, they were each given a dose of a drug that would either activate or suppress MOR. MOR activation leads to a feeling of intense happiness that rewards the brain.
The researchers found out that those who took the MOR-activating drug morphine stared longer at the faces they rated as beautiful. The beauty ratings they gave were also more extreme. Meanwhile, those who took the MOR-suppressing drug naltrexone showed the opposite behaviour.
The study concludes that gazing at pretty faces can lead to rewarding feelings in our brain. This further leads to the idea that evolution plays a very important role in how we find potential partners and why we are attracted to pretty faces.
But if some are worried that this natural attraction to pretty faces may put a strain in their relationship, a separate study might just give them comfort. Psychologist Jon Maner and his team from Florida State University discovered that those in a committed relationship subconsciously stop looking at attractive faces.
They said this is probably nature’s way of helping men and women stay in monogamous relationships, eventually enhancing their reproductive success.