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Study Wins Ig Nobel For Proving Drinkers Feel More Attractive

Submitted by on September 14, 2013 – 1:15 pmOne Comment
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“Beer Goggles” have long been known to make other people look more attractive when you’re drinking. But it turns out, the goggles look inward too: a team of researchers from France, the Netherlands, and the US found that drinking raises self-perceived attractiveness as well. For their work, they were awarded this week with the ironically prestigious Ig Nobel prize, which honors scientific achievements “that first make people laugh, then make them think.”

Entitled “Beauty is in the eye of the beer holder,” the study comprised of two parts. In the first, the clientele of a bar was examined- and not surprisingly, the more alcohol patrons consumed, the more attractive they saw themselves. In the second part, participants believed they were taking place in a taste test. Half were given an alcoholic beverage and half were given a non-alcoholic drink, but half of each of those groups were told they were given the opposite beverage. And even those who falsely believed they were drinking alcohol found themselves more attractive afterwords. Finally, a panel of judges observed videotape of the participants and rated their attractiveness, showing that the participants’ self-rating was elevated after drinking (or believing they drank) compared to the more objective analysis.

“People have long observed that drunk people think others are more attractive but ours is the first study to find that drinking makes people think they are more attractive themselves,” Prof [Brad] Bushman [of Ohio State University] told the BBC.

“If you become drunk and think you are really attractive it might influence your thoughts and behaviour towards others. It illustrates that in human memory, the link between alcohol and attractiveness is pretty strong.”

The awards were presented during a sold out ceremony at Harvard University on Thursday. Other awards honored a study of the probabilities of cows sitting down and standing up; methods of penile reattachment (assuming the penis hasn’t been chewed by a pet duck) developed after a spate of angry wives cut of their husbands’ penises in Thailand; and the arrest of a one-armed man for applauding, after public applause was outlawed in Belarus.

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