Research has shown that judgment on who is attractive varies depending on who is nearby and how attractive they are when compared.
Published in the journal Psychological Science, research from Royal Holloway
, University of London shows that a situation can influence how attractive you may look.
According to the author of the study
, Dr. Nicholas Furl from Royal Holloway’s Department of Psychology, "Rightly or wrongly, the way people look has a profound impact on the way others perceive them. We live in a society obsessed with beauty and attractiveness, but how we measure and understand these concepts are still a grey area.”
"Until now, it's been understood that a person's level of attractiveness is generally steady. If you saw a picture of George Clooney today, you would rate him as good-looking as you would tomorrow. However, this work demonstrates that the company we keep has an effect on how attractive we appear to others."
According to the research
, an average attractive face that is surrounded by undesirable faces will be more attractive than it would on its own.
During the study, they found that a less attractive face would make viewers more critical when placed between a beautiful face.
Dr. Furl said, “the presence of a less attractive face does not just increase the attractiveness of a single person, but in a crowd could actually make us even more choosey! We found that the presence of a 'distractor' face makes differences between attractive people more obvious and that observers start to pull apart these differences, making them even more particular in their judgement."