Is there an ideal face and how does ethnicity play a role in facial beauty.

Part of figuring out the answer to facial beauty is determining whether there is an ideal.  The idea of facial beauty and a Facial Beauty to explain it would have to mean that there is an ideal in order to define it.  The mere idea that there is beauty would indicate that there are some people who are more beautiful than others and vice versa.  Then further reasoning would lead us to say that there are extremes.  At the one extreme is the most beautiful and the other is the least beautiful.  Hence, there is an ideal at the most beautiful extreme.

If there is an ideal then how does the mantra “beauty is in the eye of the beholder” play into a theory on beauty.  When finding a mate, my personal thoughts on this is that people are still attracted to people who are extremely beautiful but not all people are able to fall in love with these people and have them fall in love with them back.  Many times, a person can end up with a companion that is equally attractive as compared to themselves because they are able to tolerate that particular level of beauty because a person usually can appreciate self beauty to a significant degree.  Herein, lies some of the truth to the eye of the beholder popular saying.  But, true beauty is not really in the eye of the beholder and there is an ideal out there that a large proportion of the population will concomitantly agree is beautiful.

This same principle applies to ethnicity and beauty.  There is a fairly well known research paper that took a population of Japanese and American people and they were asked to rate a group of women that were Japanese and another group that were Caucasian.  Both the Japanese and American populations found the same Japanese and Caucasian women attractive.  Other studies support this, that there is beauty that transcends ethnic variations.  Also other research, have shown that children that are 3 months old (who have not developed cultural influences that could affect there appreciation of beauty) spend more time looking at people who are more attractive than those that are not as attractive. This further supports that there is a true beauty out there that we can define better.

How does ethnicity fit in?  My theory is that ethnicity can enhance beauty by showing the person determining whether it exists in the face they are looking at a variation of something that is very close to the ideal.  You can have very small changes from the ideal and have a remarkably different looking face yet still look extremely attractive.

Thanks for reading, Dr Young

Dr Young specializes in Facial Cosmetic and Reconstructive Surgery and is located in Bellevue near Seattle, Washington

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