9 tricks to appearing more attractive, according to science

Getty Images / Pascal Le Segretain / Staff

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, but who would say no to a little help along the way?

We've compiled a list of small, science-backed changes you can make to help you appear a little more attractive.

1. Hang out with friends - or anyone you can find

A 2014 study found that people looked better when they were in a group.

Basically, our brain takes the group of faces as an aggregate, making each face look more 'average' and attractive as a result.

2. Smile

This will give you something to smile about.

A 2013 study revealed that, when shown identical faces that only differed in their facial expression, people preferred the smiling face.

In fact, 'less attractive' but happy faces were judged as equally or more attractive than 'attractive' but less smiley faces for both men and women.

Relationship therapist, educator and author Shadeen Francis told Business Insider:

As social creatures, we are programmed to notice the body language of others and scan for cues of safety and welcome.

Smiling is a universal signal for warmth, approachability, and attractiveness.

But this also works for yourself; if you smile at yourself in the mirror, you receive very similar neural cues as you would if a familiar friend smiled at you. 

No wonder we endlessly scream 'cheese!' when taking photos - smiling really does make you look better.

3. Skip the small talk

In 2015, 36 questions that claimed to make you fall in love with anyone from a 1997 study were doing the internet rounds.

The key to these questions is creating closeness by gradually revealing increasingly personal information.

Basically, whatever you do, don't talk about the weather. The deeper the questions you ask and answer, the study found, the more likely a couple is to fall in love.

4. Get a dog

Including a dog in your Tinder profile is a well-worn trick to get more matches - and this is why.

A 2015 study suggests that your furry friend can help make you appear more attractive, though this is far more effective if you're a man.

The study authors theorised:

Put in terms of evolutionary and life history theory, females allocate a higher proportion of their reproductive effort to parenting while males expend more energy on mating.

5. Eat carrots

This one takes a lot of carrots - probably more carrots than you'd ever actually want to eat - so, maybe you should save this for a once-in-a-lifetime event.

A 2011 study got volunteers to rate the attractiveness and healthiness of 51 Caucasian faces. They found skin with a yellow hue helps you look more attractive and healthy, and apparently not like a Simpsons character.

Carrots, which produce carotenoids (aka yellow pigments), make your skin more yellow

6. Women, rock some red

Yep, it's a pretty easy swap that can instantly make women more attractive to men.

A study found that men are more likely to be attracted to women wearing red rather than, say, green.

Joe Thoden, founder of the personal style site Your Color Style, told Business Insider that red:

represents passion, power and sensuality.

7. Nod your head

Nodding your head can make your personality more attractive and likeable by up to 40 per cent, according to a study, as it makes you appear more approachable in social interactions.

8. Women, arch your back

A slight arch in women's back makes her more attractive, finds research.

This might help explain why high heels are so popular, as they cause women to arch their backs slightly - and only a small change in how much a woman's back is arched is needed to make her more attractive to men.

9. Men, grow a beard

Women judge fully bearded men to be a better match for long-term relationships, according to research.

Other research claims that women find men with stubble more alluring when it comes to short-term flings.

More: Women who want to keep their looks 'should only have two children', study suggests

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