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    #MoVember Chronicles: This is what your beard says about you, according to science

    It has been mentioned that the beard can be a marker of dominance, status and even testosterone, but a recent study indicates that there is nothing behind it.

    Chances are you’ve ever heard that a bushy beard on a man is a sign that he has high testosterone. In fact, some studies have found that a man’s beard can lead others to think that he has some characteristics such as more marked masculinity, greater dominance, greater confidence, and even higher social status (depending on the type of beard ). This has led many to believe that the beard is actually a marker of these characteristics, however, a recent study indicates that it is not actually an indicator of anything.

    What does your beard say

    “Since men can easily alter their facial hair, beards could provide unreliable information about the characteristics of the beard owner, ” says the work published in the Archives of Sexual Behavior , which decided to do an analysis on whether what is think about beards is true. “We examined whether beards were honest signs of biological characteristics (such as testosterone levels) and psychological characteristics (such as self-reported dominance).”

    The study took a diverse group of healthy young men and had their beards measured directly and through self-report. Likewise, saliva tests were done before and after a session of intense exercise to be able to measure the levels of testosterone and cortisol , and the participants reported their level of dominance. And while – considering the stereotypes – we would expect to see the suspicions confirmed, it was not.

    “The results showed that beard length (directly measured and self-reported) was not related to testosterone levels or dominance, so there is no evidence to support the hypothesis that beards are honest or dishonest signs. of the testosterone levels or dominance of their owners ”. So actually the beard doesn’t say anything about us. Throughout history the beard has taken on different importance according to the cultural and religious traditions of certain areas, this being the reason why we could attribute certain elements to it in a social way, but there is no certainty behind its presence.

    The truth is that some people may have certain genes that drive a thicker and larger beard , however, this has nothing to do with other characteristics and not because a man has a beard will be more dominant.

    What the study does is talk about the reality of the beard and its link with testosterone taking the biological facts. However, it does not consider the opinion or perspective of other people. As we mentioned, there are different studies carried out on people’s perspective on beards and that is where some point out that –from their point of view– a man with a beard can appear more masculine or dominant, regardless of whether it is true or not.

    On the other hand, the study addresses the length of the beard as a factor, and not so much the style of the beards or the care of them , which could tell us something, at least about the man’s personality, but in a limited way. That is, we can imagine that those who take care of their beard and who use product are more focused on their image than those who wear thicker beards , however, we could be falling back into prejudice and a matter of perspective.

    Therefore, and taking into account the above, a man’s beard is not a sign of anything, other than the genes that prompted him to develop more marked or not so marked facial hair. Do you think your beard says something?

    Main Image: Aaron Wallace

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