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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.
Study - Women - Photos - Lice - Injuries
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.
Researchers - University - Queensland - Australia - Hair
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.
Scientists - Group - Women - Images - Ticks
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.
Researchers - Paper - 'We - Participants - Images
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.'
Research - Women - UK
The research focussed on women aged between 18 and 44 from the UK,...
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