According to a study from 2020, results revealed women consistently favored men’s beards. Researchers at the University of Queensland showed male faces with and without facial hair to female participants. The data collected measured the attractiveness to women and their higher likelihood for partner selection.
So why do women like beards over a clean-shaven man? Women in long-term relationships say that attractive facial hair includes long beards, heavy stubble, and light stubble. A man’s beard is a sign of strength and virility.
Is it just a trend or has it always been that women prefer facial hair? We explore why women find beards more attractive with the help of some experts on human anthropology, sociology and psychology.
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Do Women Like Beards (Attractiveness Study)
The study focused on 919 American test participants, who were all women and ranged in age from 18 to 70. The women rated 30 pictures of men with varying degrees of facial hair. Some men had full beards, others had light stubble, and then there were pictures of clean-shaven men.
The leader of the study, PhD student Tessa Clarkson, wanted to see whether photographs depicting men with facial hair would be attractive to the participants. Also, introducing digitally altered photos depicting men with skewed facial features to elicit a reaction.
Photos ranged from unaltered bearded and non-beard men to altered photos with more feminine features and a beard or more masculine without a beard.
The study found that women are attracted to men with facial hair, and they find them to be more attractive due to perceptions of physical and social dominance.
While the main goal was to see which men were most attractive to women, the study also wanted to see whether facial hair changed the perception of a man with feminine features. Were men with facial hair seen as more masculine?
The study found that women associated more masculine faces with beards, as well as physical strength and social confidence. These men were deemed more assertive and dominant, and they believed these men would also have a healthier immune system.
What Types of Beards Do Women Like Most?
So it’s true. Girls like beards because it makes men seem more masculine and healthy. Most women also agree that it’s more attractive to grow a beard when men have a grooming routine, such as applying a beard oil and brushing their facial hair.
That’s a good thing, right? Well, not all women agree that lots of facial hair is attractive, and there are some beards that have more esteem than others.
Whether you decide to grow a beard in the short term, here are some of the more attractive beards:
The most attractive beard according to a nationwide poll was the short stubble beard, such as the Jason Statham beard style. Here’s a quick beard attractiveness chart from PrimandPrep.com to show you what women really think.
The lesser attractive beards included bushy beards, circle beards, mustaches, and yeard beards.
Bushy, unruly beards may be viewed by some as a sign that a man lacks a hygiene routine. That’s not always the case, but the study also explored what turned women off in regards to facial hair.
For example, some women found bigger, bushier beards to be a problem because they believed these beards could old parasites or old food particles. These unruly beards were a sign of poor maintenance and grooming habits to women who were disgusted by beards.
The study also noted that single and married women who expressed a desire to have children also tended to like full beards.
Beards vs. Clean-Shaven Faces
Another poll by Prim and Prep measured women’s responses to beards and clean-shaven men only, finding that beards were also preferred to clean-shaven men, but there was a large percentage of responses that were neutral to either facial hair style.
It’s important to consider that the study only surveyed women from one country, and it’s not indicative of all worldly cultures. For example, another poll conducted by My Navi Woman in Japan asked Japanese women, “Do you like guys with beards?”
The answers unequivocally pointed to “No” with 85 percent of the respondents saying that they prefer clean-shaven partners. One respondent said, “Beards just seem unsanitary. Hardly any guys look good with one.”
To Shave or Not To Shave
Every fall, men consider the No Shave November challenge. Is it worth it? Thanks to these studies and polls, it’s clear that women find beards attractive, so why not?
We think it’s important for every man to grow out their facial hair at least once, if only to see what kind of beard you can grow. After all, what if you have a magnificent thick beard just waiting to break free of your razor?
If you need help styling a new beard, we have some amazing guides with step-by-step approaches to shaving, fading, and trimming your facial hair.