As we've previously reported, beer goggles are a real phenomenon. Well, according to this study, drinking doesn't just make other people more attractive--it also makes you more attractive. Here, researchers asked (sober) participants to look at photos of people who had been drinking and rank their attractiveness.
Turns out that drinking a moderate amount (equivalent to two small glasses of wine) made people more attractive, whereas doubling that amount made them less attractive. The authors hypothesize that the increase in attractiveness after drinking could be related to "an increase in red colouration, which in turn is known to be perceived as healthy and attractive." Hot! (perhaps literally?)
Aims Alcohol consumption is known to be associated with risky sexual behaviours, but this relationship may be complex and bidirectional. We explored whether alcohol consumption leads to the consumer being rated as more attractive than sober individuals.
Methods Heterosexual social alcohol consumers completed an attractiveness-rating task, in which they were presented with pairs of photographs depicting the same individual, photographed while sober and after having consumed alcohol (either 0.4 or 0.8 g/kg), and required to decide which image was more attractive.
Results Photographs of individuals who had consumed a low dose of alcohol (equivalent to 250 ml of wine at 14% alcohol by volume for a 70 kg individual) were rated as more attractive than photographs of sober individuals. This was not observed for photographs of individuals who had consumed a low [sic] dose of alcohol.
Conclusion In addition to perceiving others as more attractive, a mildly intoxicated alcohol consumer may also be perceived as more attractive by others. This in turn may play a role in the relationship between alcohol consumption and risky sexual behaviour."