New research suggests that women are hard-wired to love men with beards, such as actor George Clooney (pictured), as well as faces with masculine features

Women really ARE hard-wired to love beards

They are a popular facial accessory for hipsters and lumberjacks alike, but it seems having a beard really does make you more attractive.

New research suggests that women are hard-wired to love men with beards, as well as faces with masculine features.

The study found that even when women were shown gruesome photos of facial lice and injuries they still picked out bearded men as the most attractive.

Previous research has found facial hair is ‘riddled with bacteria’ which may spread germs and trigger infections.

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New research suggests that women are hard-wired to love men with beards, such as actor George Clooney (pictured), as well as faces with masculine features
David Beckham is known for his facial hair, but could it be the secret to his sex-appeal?

New research suggests that women are hard-wired to love men with beards, as well as faces with masculine features. George Clooney (left) and David Beckham (right) are two celebrities known for their facial hair

BEARD GERMS

Experts have previously warned beards are ‘bacterial sponges’ riddled with thousands of microbes, and a perfect way to pass on germs.

Carol Walker, from the Birmingham Trichology Centre, previously said having facial hair can lead to frequent skin infections.

Beards harbour more germs because facial hair is courser than other hair, so traps dirt and germs more easily, she said.

She told MailOnline at the time: ‘Beard hair; it’s courser. It has the shape of a bayonet, a round, convexed bottom and then comes up the side to a point.

‘It becomes curly and smooth, it tends to have more bends and kinks which trap dirt.

‘The cuticles on the hair – which are like layers of tiles on a roof – trap the germs and grease. Hair around nostrils and mouth is well-placed to harbour bacteria.

Researchers at the the University of Queensland, Australia, thought that facial hair might reduce male attractiveness in some circumstances.

They argued that beards are a possible breeding ground for bacteria disease-carrying parasites, which could switch some women off.

The scientists tried to ‘disgust’ a group of 688 women by showing them images of burrowing ticks, body lice, and open infected cuts.

But the women still rated bearded men as ‘more attractive’ than their clean-shaven counterparts.

The researchers wrote in their paper: ‘We primed female participants using images depicting various species of lice and ticks on or burrowing into the skin and attached to body hair, which were judged as significantly more disgusting compared to control images.

‘However, we did not find women’s preferences for beards were reduced following exposure to ectoparasites, or any of the other pathogenic conditions.’

The research focussed on women aged between 18 and 44 from the UK, America, Australia, Canada and New Zealand.

Participants were found to be both more attracted to bearded men and to men with more masculine features.

The researchers wrote: ‘There were significant main effects of facial hair and facial masculinity on attractiveness ratings.

The study found that even when women were shown gruesome photos of facial lice and injuries they still picked out bearded men - such as actor Chris Hemsworth (pictured) - as the most attractive
Participants were found to be both more attracted to bearded men, such as Leonardo DiCaprio (pictured), and to men with more masculine features

The study found that even when women were shown gruesome photos of facial lice and injuries they still picked out bearded men – such as actors Chris Hemsworth (left) and Leonardo DiCaprio (right) – as the most attractive

‘Beards received higher ratings of attractiveness than clean-shaven faces and high masculinity received higher ratings of attractiveness than low masculinity.’

Previous research from the Queensland team has suggested that women find beards more attractive because they enhance a man’s masculinity.

This provides a signal to women that suggests they are more fertile and better adapted to survive.

But experts have also warned beards can be ‘bacterial sponges’ riddled with thousands of microbes, and a perfect way to pass on germs.

Researchers thought that women would find men with beards less attractive after looking at infections and body lice, but found the images made no difference. Actor Ben Affleck is pictured
Previous research from the Queensland team has suggested that women find beards, such as that sported by Ryan Reynolds (pictured), more attractive because they enhance a man's masculinity

Researchers thought that women would find men with beards less attractive after looking at infections and body lice, but found the images made no difference. Actors Ben Affleck (left) and Ryan Reynolds (right) are pictured with beards

Carol Walker, from the Birmingham Trichology Centre, previously said having facial hair can lead to frequent skin infections.

Beards harbour more germs because facial hair is courser than other hair, so traps dirt and germs more easily, she said.

She told MailOnline at the time: ‘Beard hair; it’s courser. It has the shape of a bayonet, a round, convexed bottom and then comes up the side to a point.

‘It becomes curly and smooth, it tends to have more bends and kinks which trap dirt.

‘The cuticles on the hair – which are like layers of tiles on a roof – trap the germs and grease. Hair around nostrils and mouth is well-placed to harbour bacteria.

Posted on; DailyMail>>

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