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Smoking makes you less attractive

Most people can identify smokers just by looking at their face, and find them less attractive. Researchers at the University of Bristol in England discovered this.

The researchers generated two pictures of a woman and two pictures of a man, using computer software, which can show how a face changes due to factors such as aging, BMI change and smoking. The researchers created a picture of a man and a woman that didn't smoke, and a picture of the same man and woman that had been been smoking for some years.

Smoking makes you less attractive

The pictures [prototypes] were shown to a group of six hundred participants.

Roughly 70 percent of the subjects could see which face belonged to the smoker, and which did not. Almost all of the subjects also found the face of the smoker less attractive than that of the non-smoker.

Smoking makes you less attractive


"Our results provide evidence that smoking may negatively impact facial appearance, and that facial appearance may provide information about smoking status", the researchers write. "The findings [...] have the potential to be of utility in developing and improving smoking behaviour change interventions."

"One type of smoking behaviour change intervention targeted at young people is the use of applications illustrating the changes in facial appearance likely if they age as a smoker and a non-smoker. These work on the basis that young people are particularly sensitive to the potential negative effects smoking has on their attractiveness as they age."

"Applications of this kind, which have been shown to be effective in changing behaviour and attitudes towards smoking in young adults, currently use transformations produced using the faces of unrelated groups of smokers and non-smokers."

"Basing these face transformations on prototypes produced from identical twins discordant for smoking instead would mean they illustrate changes in appearance that are truly representative of the effects of smoking, and address the potential criticism that they may reflect inadvertent differences in intrinsic individual differences such as genetic disposition to ageing between smoking and non-smoking groups."

R Soc Open Sci. 2017;4:161076.

Strength training increases success of attempts to quit smoking 10.06.2014


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