Step aside, pink-cheeked pansy boys — real women crave scruff.
Lusty ladies are just more turned on by men with facial forests, according to a new study published in the Journal of Evolutionary Biology.
“Beards may be more attractive to women when considering long-term [rather] than short-term relationships as they indicate a male’s ability to successfully compete socially with other males for resources,” the research says.
As part of the experiment, male subjects were first photographed clean-shaven, followed by snaps after five and 10 days of going natural. Finally, they posed in full manly glory after one month of growth.
Researchers tasked 8,500 women with rating the men on their appeal as a “long-term romantic partner.” Heavy stubble (10 days) was ranked most attractive, while full beards grown over four weeks came second.
A 5 o’ clock shadow was considered third-rate — and clean-shaven men constituted the dregs of the dating pool.
“Beards consistently render men with an older, more masculine, socially dominant and aggressive appearance,” the study says.
First Movember moustaches — the annual November celebration of men’s health awareness — and now this? With the spotlight’s glare so laser-focused on man fur, what better time for a little celebratory beard bling than the season of giving?
Firebox to the rescue: The online gift shop now offers a personal holiday light show for your man’s facial fur. For $14, you can deck your hunk with 18 multicolored LED lights. The tiny heat-less bulbs are strung on a 35-inch wire that clips discreetly into their burly aphrodisiac.
Oh, and don’t feel bad if you lack a luxurious chin mane, guys. It doesn’t mean you’re not packing testosterone — it just means you can’t process it.
Men who can’t cultivate a full bush don’t produce enough dihydrotestosterone, or DHT, a hormone that “causes the body to mature during puberty and is responsible for many of the physical characteristics associated with adult males.”
But not all men are created equal.
“DHT is a modified, more active form of testosterone,” Dr. Joshua Zeichner, a director of clinical research in dermatology at Mount Sinai Hospital, tells Men’s Health. “In your body, testosterone is transformed into DHT, which exerts stronger effects than testosterone itself.”