February 9, 2011

German, Greek, or French?

In "And the Country with the Most Beautiful Women Is ..." Roissy calls attention to one of those efforts at averaging together lots of pictures of people's faces. This one has 41 different nationalities of young women [click on picture to get 1370 x 1240 full size picture of 41 composite faces]. 

As usual, taking the average of young faces makes for a pleasing effect. Much of facial attractiveness is lacking random defects, which creating composite digital images washes out. (On the other hand, while averaging can get you pretty close to, say, Britney Spears at age 20, it doesn't seem able to get you to, say, Audrey Hepburn.)

In commenting, please keep in mind that Roissy's post is a good place for Roissyesque comments, while this is a good place for discussing the various high-minded epistemological issues I will bring up below.

Unfortunately, I can't find the source of all these pictures. (I'd guess yearbook pictures. If so, we're dealing with young women from above the dropout class. Or maybe they are beauty contest participants. Maybe one country's photos are beauty contest winners and another country's are mug shots from county jail. I don't know, so don't be too quick to decide the women of Country X are more beautiful than the women of Country Y based on these composites.)

One thing that's interesting is the difference in facial expressions, which has a lot to do with social attitudes. For example, the composite West African girl looks sweet, while the composite African-American girl looks like the cast of Waiting to Exhale is telling her, "You go, girl!" And the poor composite Afghan girl looks like she's kind of worried that the Taliban will at any moment break in and set the photography studio on fire.

On the other hand, a lot of differences in expressions may just have to do with what the individual photographers asked for, and other non-national semi-random characteristics.

Still, you can definitely see national "types:"
For example, which is the German composite, which the Greek, and which the French? (This is not a trick question.)

I'm not sure why the middle face is shorter in the vertical dimension than the other two -- this probably has more of a technical explanation involving how the pictures were taken or the images recopied than a physical anthropological explanation. I wouldn't be too excited about comparing the composites versus each other since that's so dependent upon how pictures from around the world were taken.

Instead, what I think is interesting is how much each composite is fairly recognizably traceable to relatively close to its country of origin. For example, while looking at one of the composites above, the name "Marianne" suddenly sprung into my mind:
When French artists draw Marianne, an emblem of the Republic for over 150 years, they use French girls as models. Conversely, French girls tend to try, in a wide variety of ways, to look French. (As 2Blowhards pointed out, the French get up in the morning looking forward to a whole day of being French.)

It would be an interesting experiment to do on a large number of people to see how much more accurate their national identifications are when using the 41 averaged composite faces. But also test how well people do on identifying the nationalities of 41 individual faces from the underlying samples.

The existence of types is quite unpopular in the human sciences these days. For example, the Field Museum has a stupendous collection of 104 sculptures they commissioned from sculptress Malvina Hoffman in 1930 to illustrate "The Races of Mankind." In 1999s, I asked a Field Museum official why the museum didn't treat this amazing resource with more respect. She said they weren't realistic because they were "types."

In other words, when Hoffman sculpted, for example, her Nuer tribesman of the Southern Sudan, she sculpted an extremely Nuery-looking fellow imaginable -- about 6'8" and 140 pounds. In reality, by no means is the average Nuer 6'-8". On the other hand, the Nuers, like their archrivals, the Dinkas, are among the most "elongated" people on Earth, so Hoffman definitely caught their particular tendency.

On the other hand, these newfangled composites validate the existence of types.

This is actually an important question to understand both sides of. 

Taxonomists rely upon types -- typically a single stuffed animal or preserved plant (known as a holotype) in a prominent museum -- to classify creatures they find. (Any experts in this rather arcane subject, please feel free to correct me.)

For example, say you are a local homeowner and don't like your neighbor's plan to subdivide his land because it would hurt your view and lower your property value. So, you hire some biology grad students to search your neighbor's property for anything that might get him in trouble under the Endangered Species Act. They bring back a dead bird. Is it the officially endangered California gnatcatcher?!? Or is it merely the common Baja gnatcatcher? Huge amounts of money could be riding on this question. You compare it to the type for each and decide based on which it's closest to in looks.

That, however, raises the question of what type of type should be chosen: an average member of a population or a distinctively representative example of a population. Taxonomists have tended toward the latter as being more useful in settling subsequent classification quandaries. For example, a statue of a 6'8" Nuer would be more helpful than a statue of a 6'1" Nuer at helping people subsequently recognize Nuerness.

Somewhat similarly, Swedes tend to be more distinctly representative than, say, Slovenians of certain distinctive tendencies that distinguish Europeans from the rest of the human population. On the other hand, Slovenian are more likely to look like the average European than Swedes do, in part because Slovenia is more central and Sweden more peripheral in Europe.

Do you see the distinction?

Which way of thinking is right and which wrong?

Well, both ways can be useful. It's helpful to be able to remember that there are two different approaches. It's also useful to remember, however, the shortcomings of either approach.

In general, I'm not that big of a fan of the classical taxonomical approach to human beings. Instead, I prefer to think genealogically. For example, instead of trying to match, say, Tiger Woods to his closest type, you just ask him what his family tree is.

P.S. Here's Dienekes's composites of 2006 World Cup soccer players, showing that if you average enough healthy young people together, even Wayne Rooney's team comes out looking all right.

130 comments:

Anonymous said...

French, German, Greek.

Anonymous said...

These girls were chosen from WAY ABOVE AVERAGE. It's like a beauty contest.

Anonymous said...

Peruvian and South African. ROTFL. Only whites need apply?

Anonymous said...

Fascinating topic... and I'm glad you qualified the "Roissyeque comments" a bit. But still, it just doesn't seem fitting for Steve Sailer to associate himself with a character as deviant as Roissy (or Chris Brand for that matter.) There are some taboos which are best left unchallenged.

Anonymous said...

I think I like the French girl the most. The Filipina girl is the cutest of the Asians, which reflects reality quite nicely. The Vietnamese girl having lighter skin than the Chinese girl does not reflect reality at all though. You can see a hint of head covering on the Afghan girl. And Roissy is indisputably right about the Samoan girl's looks.

Anonymous said...

German, French, Greek says I.

I once dated a German girl in high school. Her family had come over to the U.S. in the 40s. She was very pretty with high cheek bones, a refined mouth and huge green eyes. They were East Prussian refugees and there was a bit of the Slavic about her I always thought. She was totally different from the Southeastern U.S. gene pool that was all around us.

Several years ago, I was looking at a German news website and there was some girl that was being interviewed about "How fun to live in Berlin or is it a sad bore?" and her picture looked EXACTLY like my old girlfriend. They could have been twins really.

Anonymous said...

Peruvian and Burmese...

Anonymous said...

The German face is obviously severely squashed in the vertical dimension, as are some of the others. That makes me doubt the quality of these composites.

Anonymous said...

Yes, I also like the French girl the most. She looks the softest and most feminine. Then in this order: German, Israeli, Russian, Welsh, and Swiss. The rest of the Europeans next.

Of the non-whites, I think the Mexican is most attractive and the Samoan the least attractive. No blacks and Asians catch my eye, although I've always thought petite Asian girls looked great.

Rain And said...

The averages are from Dragon Horse's blog

http://pmsol3.wordpress.com/

agnostic said...

Neat: more support for my hunch / theory that females from herding (or pastoralist) cultures are better looking than ones from farming cultures, all other variables held constant.

Animal domestication and good looks

Look at East African vs. West or Central African, Greek or Italian vs. English or German, Indian vs. South Indian, Uzbek or Mongolian vs. Chinese or Taiwanese, and Peruvian vs. Mexican.

(The first ones in the comparison are more pastoralist, the second ones less.)

Shawn said...

Interesting post. Thanks. How can we be certain that the choosers choose a representative sample of women from their country.

This isn't racial averaging of any sorts but you men's soccer teams definitely show that each country has their own racial type:

http://racialreality.110mb.com/footballers.html

Nanonymous said...

I remember Deinekes ran a number of such comparisons. Korean, Japanese and Chinese girls were distinguished rather reliably. North/South Europe for men was a slam dunk but things were becoming tricky on a finer level.

Anonymous said...

The North Indian girl looks pretty good. I like the Afro-American girl too.

Anonymous said...

Surprisingly, Israel looks best and Greek is # 2 - no one else even comes close.

Steve Wood said...

I hope it isn't too Roissy-esque to point out how beautiful the Eastern European women are. All the composites are pretty - as Anonymous 2 said, the images are way above average for any ethnicity - but the Polish, Russian and Lat/Lith composites are gorgeous.

Some stereotypes, it seems, are true.

Anonymous said...

Worst 2 are Samoan and South Indian, with honorable mentions to Filipino, Taiwanese, Hungarian, Irish, Ethiopian, Cambodian, Mongolian, Burmese, and Chinese - and I actually like a fair # of Chinese chicks I see, so that's a bit odd...

Anonymous said...

South India and Samoa - not known for good looking women

Anonymous said...

A little off-topic, but I swear to goodness that I have come to be able to see "smarts" in a chick's face.

Probably I always could, but maybe it's just that I am so hyper-aware of it nowadays.

Anonymous said...

OK, this seems to be the source.

When you click on the individual posts, you get more faces than there are in the composite picture that Steve linked to.

This one, for example, shows the Americas, including the average White American man and woman.

Reg Cæsar said...

I nailed 'em-- er, I mean, I got them all right-- using expressions as much as features.

But I have to say that the Poless and the colleen look more like Arianna than the Grecian lass does. (As does the Afghan, which may explain why their men prefer boys. Let's see that composite!)

TheAbyssinienne has a rounder face than the many I see in my city, suggesting that ours might be drawn from a different stratum of Amharicity. Incidentally, "Ethiopian" and "Eritrean" mean "burnt face" and "red", respectively, in Greek.

Anonymous said...

Interesting link.

Among east Asians, the female ranking seems to go (in my eye at least)

Korean > Japanese > Chinese.

Now the curious thing is that the male rankings are the opposite

Chinese > Japanese > Korean.

http://pmsol3.wordpress.com/2009/10/10/world-of-facial-averages-east-southeast-asia-pacific-islander/#more-2476

Anonymous said...

If this blog gets any lighter it'll simply float away. How about some comments on the NY Times story about whites becoming a minority among preschoolers?

Mercer said...

In the link provided by anonymous above, WHY DON'T YOU PEOPLE USE A PSEUDONYM!!!!!, the Argentine woman looks identical to the South African in Steve's link.

Whiskey said...

Think about what it takes to produce beautiful women.

You can't have the populace on the edge of starvation. And too much food and indolence produces obesity and related problems. There is therefore a "sweet spot" which would include off the top of my head:

1. Burning calories from COLD!
2. Urbanization but not too much, no Mexico City/Lagos megacities that don't function.
3. Competition among women for top guys -- not just hooking up whatever; a payoff for looking good and selecting partners that look good.
4. Avoiding the "Rumor Willis effect" of too masculine guys producing daughters with unfortunately masculine jaws/brows.

It would seem to me that a sweet spot of moderation, no uber-manly man preference, with bulging jaws and foreheads (Arnold types) and no uber-dainty effete guys either, and women in competition for the top guys but not too much nor harems either (gene pool spreads around as more guys have kids and more variation prevents Saudi style birth defects).

Anonymous said...

Surprisingly, Israel looks best and Greek is # 2 - no one else even comes close.

Are we allowed to point out that Jewesses are incredibly hot right up until about the age of 30, at which point they suddenly become just unbelievably hideous?

Or would that be anti-semitism?

Anti-semitic or not, it's a really weird phenomenon.

Over the years, I've witnessed it repeatedly in my own personal life - Jewish chicks whom I dated back in the day, who were phenomenally gorgeous at the time, are now more than a little difficult to look at.

Reg Cæsar said...

In Racial Realities in Europe, Lothrop Stoddard had a chapter on "Composite France". So is this model a composite of composites?

Funny, but the French composite lady comes a lot closer than the others do to my own wife, who's 1/4 French-Canadian. But she spent 2/3 of her childhood with that grandmother, so maybe this is enviroment speaking.

more support for my hunch / theory that females from herding (or pastoralist) cultures are better looking than ones from farming cultures --Agnostic

I always though the difference was due to relative isolation, the multistrained peoples of the Mediterranean, North Africa and Middle East being more likely to produce a mismatched (and hence uglier) face than the moderately inbred folks of Scandinavia, East Asia, or the many island nations around the world.

But Agnostic is right about the Horn of Africa. Though their supermodel strength lies not only in their features, but in how they present themselves. Like the French and Italian chicks of a couple generations ago. Buy a coffee in Minneapolis, and you'll see what I mean.

Ladies, you can be sweet, sexy and friendly, all at the same time-- it just takes practice!

Anonymous said...

"How about some comments on the NY Times story about whites becoming a minority among preschoolers?"

Sailer's not all that interested in preserving the white population. Instead, he's demonstrating his loyalty to his Asian fembots who absorb everything neocon Jews tell them and regurgitate it as their own ideas. See Chua & Malkin.

This post is probably to demonstrate the inbred & shallow nature of the white female along with being a dig at Western style representational government.

So sorry I didn't marry that Chinese guy 20 years ago, Steve, will your Asian mouthpieces ever forgive me? Too bad you couldn't just cane me & lock me up for the rest of my life for that slight.

Fascist.

Hey, what if we let you NEOCONs run the foreign relations? Can we have the domestic rule then, huh, can we?

What you are, my God, what you are...

Anonymous said...

"Somewhat similarly, Swedes tend to be more distinctly representative than, say, Slovenians of certain distinctive tendencies that distinguish Europeans from the rest of the human population."

This is probably true facially. Certainly, the Swedish girl's face on the big composite pic you linked to is the most extremely European face of any of them. However, I've long thought that emotionally the most extremely European people are actually the Finns.

Hidden Shade said...

I'd suggest that you check out the originals at the blog that was mentioned above by one of the Anonymous commenters:
http://pmsol3.wordpress.com/

The graphic that Roissy posted seemed to have some vertical distortions for some of the images and they are all of lower resolution.

To address a point brought up by the same anonymous commenter, I think that it's strange that both he and Roissy prefered the Korean over the Chinese and Japanese. For me it's

Japanese > Chinese > Korean

And this is to the point that I suspect that there was some sort of sampling bias that chose ugly Korean women, so two citings of preference for the Korean image seems rather strange to me.

I must say that the East-West Eurasian admixture is rather striking and makes for a rather flattering image for the Uzbek average.

Anonymous said...

In fact, Wayne Rooney is of pure Irish descent.

Steve Sailer said...

Really?

Zhora Misha said...

You know, Steve, Dienekes is analyzing people's genomes (that they get from companies like 23andme) by obtaining their membership scores in ten Eurasian clusters. He also has a free downloadable calculator to break out your NW Euro, SE Euro and Ashkenazi heritage. Adoptees love it.

FWIW, the gals are French, German, Greek. Arianna dyes her hair, don't forget!

Among the composite footballers, that Serb is the cutest!

Silver said...

I hope it isn't too Roissy-esque to point out how beautiful the Eastern European women are.

Stating what is mere opinion as though it were incontrovertible fact is irredeemably Roissy-esque.

Personally, I've never been able to see this side of the eastern european.

If we're talking upper echelon beauty (the kind the average feller will never, ever lay eyes on IRL), where's the eastern Claudia Schiffer? Where's the eastern Liz Hurley? Where's the...I could go on.

If we're talking a more pedestrian level of beauty, the kind you might actually have a chance of meeting, things get mixed up pretty quick and personal likes and dislikes rule all.

As for what the "average" can tell you, it depends on how divergent the elements that make it up are. Consider income. Is an "average" income of $50k much like either an income of $100k or $10? Or a $30,000 income much like a $60,000 income? I'd say there are quite significant differences between them. But if the extremes of a $50k average were $40k and $60k then average is more descriptive. (I know, I know, I could have just said it depends on the standard deviation. But it's more illustrative to use actual examples, particularly if example is analogous -- imo real world (U.S.) income level disparities are quite similar to racial-type disparities among an ethnic group. And I'm not referring to beauty or "quality", just the degree of difference, eg the difference between Mizrahi and and Ashkenazi is rather like the difference between a $10k income and a $100k income in the sense that they're quite different, and yet both in the same ball park compared to incomes of $100 or $10 million; but just the average of $50k differs significantly from the extremes, so too does the "average Israeli".)

Anonymous said...

lol. Roissy's commentators are kind of amusing to me re: the English girl, basically as on the last forum I saw this posted (electronic music forum populated mainly by Brit guys to whom xenophilia is generally a point of pride and where Yanks and Euros diss English girls for fun) they were all dissing the English chick and saying how she was totally expectedly ugly. Go figure.

These are all taken from selected photos on an anthropology and international relations from an African American perspective run by a guy named Dragon Horse:

https://pmsol3.wordpress.com/

The pictures for the composites are pretty much randomly sampled from photos that people have uploaded onto the internet with a sample size I don't know (digging deeper into the site might help you find out).

I'm surprised by the facial length to breadth ratios of the Northern European faces and the narrowness of the Southern European faces - not inconsistent with the literature on faces in Europe, but something I haven't seen so dramatically in other composites based around a Northern European base.

Laban said...

"upper echelon beauty (the kind the average feller will never, ever lay eyes on IRL)"

Don't know about the States (I bet it's true there too), but in any English town you can find a few women who make every male head turn when they enter a room. Some realise what they have, are ambitious, and leave - a Liz Hurley or Zeta Jones. Some just marry guys and have kids.

(I was in the village shop one day and a tall, stunning girl walked in - not only very pretty but dressed immaculately. Turned out she was a dancer at the Crazy Horse in Paris, back visiting her parents).

Anonymous said...

Also I think the samples here are probably confounded by lighting and tanning to some extent - are English girls really that warmer toned than Irish girls? Probably not, and so on for lots of other faces.

Charlie George said...

As for Wayne Rooney, as someone has already pointed out, he is pure ethnic Irish.

If you want to think of what a typical ethnic English soccer player looks like, think underwear model, David Beckham.

Charlie George said...

are English girls really that warmer toned than Irish girls?

Yes.

I've read somewhere that the Irish have the palest skin in the world.

A lot of ethnic English girls will have that kind of germanic skin tone which goes bronze in the sun. The ones with the more 'Celtic' heritage go red and/or freckly.

The Irish have considerably more of the red and freckly variety than of the Germanic bronze type.

This is based purely on my own observations, but I bet someone could dig up some scientific links to support it.

Anonymous said...

My background is English Australian but I can see my family staring out the eyes of the French 'girl'.

Polistra said...

I'm pretty sure these are taken from a limited selection of pop-stars or similar. Hairstyles give it away. With the Korean, for instance, a true average of younger women would have curly 'poodle' hair, not straightened. The Latvian/Lithuanian and Polish images show one set of bangs, which wouldn't be obvious if the input came from a wide range of faces.

A more interesting study would be to look at the anime-ish cartoon images used in web or TV ads. These must appeal to the average woman as "looking like me", and thus can't depart too far from the real median.

Anonymous said...

Are we allowed to point out that Jewesses are incredibly hot right up until about the age of 30, at which point they suddenly become just unbelievably hideous?

Natalie Portman is going through "The Change" right now.

Apparently the child molesters all agree that she was smokin' hot in that kiddie pr0n flick, but, more recently, she's starting to look like the southern end of a north-bound mule.

Racial Reality said...

"This isn't racial averaging of any sorts but you men's soccer teams definitely show that each country has their own racial type:

http://racialreality.110mb.com/footballers.html"


I actually did make averages of some of those teams:

http://racialreality.blogspot.com/2006/09/caucasoid-phenotypic-variation.html

And then there are these from a different source:

http://racialreality.blogspot.com/2010/06/euro-2008-facial-composites.html

Shawn said...

I thought the English girl was hottest!

Mixed Mutt said...

Surprisingly, Israel looks best and Greek is # 2 - no one else even comes close.

Are we allowed to point out that Jewesses are incredibly hot right up until about the age of 30


This is seems a general Eastern Mediterranean phenomena that also affects Southern Italians, Greeks, and I suspect Turks/Arabs. I've met European-derived Lebanese who didn't not fit this rule.

Perhaps this effect spreads eastward throughout the Middle East but Persian women seem better preserved (Armenian too?).

Anonymous said...

I finally had a look at the entire gallery and I find that I am totally enamored of the Eastern Europeans; the Baltic states in particular including Finland. That surprised me.

About 35 years ago, I spent several months in Italy roaming around (I had put together a Renaissance military history tour). I went armed with a year of intensive Italian lessons (which did little good in Palermo and Venice) and had a lot of time to inflict my version of Italian on some extremely tolerant and amused natives. I had a lot of fun on that trip and I toyed with the ideal of getting a work permit. I could have done it, but it would have been a bureaucratic nightmare.

In Northern Italy especially, I was so impressed with the looks of the girls. A lot of it was their unfamiliar body language and sense of style compared to the U.S., but they really are a lovely people all in all. All these years later one image sticks in my mind. One day in Siena I saw three girls riding by on one of the larger scooters that are/were available there. They were all hanging on to each other and were dressed in conservative/sexy office outfits. One of them was gripping her purse in her teeth. I waved at them and the driver smiled and tapped her front teeth with two fingers as they went by. No idea what that meant, but I was enchanted.

Has to be said...

"Where's the eastern Claudia Schiffer? Where's the eastern Liz Hurley?"

If your category is "fashion models who became famous 20 years ago," than you're right, the Eastern European girls are few, for obvious reasons. But even then there were some high-profile Eastern Block escapees like Paulina Porizkova or Ivana Trump.

Mixed Mutt said...

In addition to physical looks, I'd give as much weight to:

* Intelligence
* Non-Neurotic agreeableness
* Femininity
* Physicality

Speaking of averages and acknowledging generalities aren't always true:

Israeli women traveling abroad seemed generally more attractive (but with a hard look) and less neurotic than American Ashkenazim, but are often abrasive, mannish and appear noticeably less intelligent and driven than their American counterparts.

American-born Chinese and Korean women rank relatively high wrt intelligence, non-neurotic, femininity, looks, but are less physical, less likely to be >3SD out, more conformist and can very disagreeable under specific situations (eg money).

European women may be more likely to have a combination of desirable features perhaps due to a more heterogeneous genetic mix. However, this also can lead to a regression to a lower mean for desirable traits that are partly genetic. Also, unlike NE Asians or Ashkenazim, Euro-Americans don't have the benefits of a tribe or culture to rally around.

There are always trade-offs.

How does animal husbandry inform HBD when selecting for a specific trait like intelligence, height or skin color that is mostly genetic?

What about selecting for a broad range of somewhat contradictory traits that are partly genetic (personality, neurotic, beauty) or a little genetic (behavioral tendencies)?

The wisdom of the elite crowds at places like Harvard, Cal Tech, MIT, etc seem to point to growing European-Ashkenazim-NEAsian pairing. Will their mixed offspring be more gifted genetically or are they diluting their strong suites?

Any informed expert opinions?

Although I've personally never explicitly thought in such terms when dating, I have known guys who have. It shocked me at first, but I came to understand their logic.

Anonymous said...

The first time I read that average face = beautiful face was (I seem to recall) in the NYT about 20 years ago. At that time computers had become good enough to average hundreds of faces. LR symmetry was the single most important factor determining conventional beauty, but researchers concluded that the most beautiful faces were not entirely average but had some slightly exaggerated (but symmetric) facial characteristic. I recall the punchline in this article being that, not only was beauty not in the eye of the beholder (all men could agree on which women are beautiful) but Western men could judge the most beautiful Eastern women and Eastern men could judge the most beautiful Western women. Whatever.

Anyway, since the average woman doesn't have the "average face" these computer studies are kind of pointless. You might as well take pictures of skulls, average them, then have a forensic anthropologist stick clay on on a model of the average skull to reconstruct the most beautiful face.

Attempts at facial averaging ignore a singular talent of all men -- the ability to sort women by looks. It's better to sort women by their average scores on a website like Hot or Not (the race of who votes apparently doesn't matter). Create an average of what's truly perceived as average. Then reconstruct what is +/-1sg, +-2sg, etc. Subsequently, figuring out what is typical or beautiful by race would then be possible, making interracial comparisons more reliable.

Kylie said...

There's a representation of the averaged African American but none for the European American.

Anonymous said...

What's wrong with South Indian?

Mel Torme said...

The Chinese girl is way, way prettiest, and makes the rest of them look like dogs! I guess this is kind of subjective, though.

I think the Uzbeki one is 2nd hottest, and I'd agree with Samoan on the bottom, just below S. Indian.

Is there any similar image-averaging technique that has been done for the same nationalities, only with 3-view (front, behind and profile) of the area between the belly button and the knees? I think that would be much more of a "value-added product" for all of us.

I look forward to a link to data described above. I can foresee, however, that it may be hard to gather up a collection of girls from around the world photographed in only daisy-duke shorts, tight jeans or short mini-skirts. I would hope this gets higher priority than high-speed rail, at least.

Anonymous said...

The theoretical work on description has been available for some time now. Apparently it just hasn't gotten to anthropology.

In elementary descriptive statistics we learn that we classify distributions with measures each of which is decreasingly less important. The first is central tendency, the second is dispersion and the third is skew. There is a fourth (kurtosis) but it's not important.

If we were to try to characterize the height of a group of men by picking one whom we thought of as representative, we would be engaging in the use of "types". That would obviously be an inferior method.

If we were to describe the height of Nuers we should at least use the arithmetic mean, and the standard deviation. These simple measurements eliminate the problem of which Nuer is "typical".

A population should be characterized by a population measure(s).

There is no such thing as a "Greek" looking woman. Individuals are not populations. We need a population measure that takes at least variation into account.

I suggest a a series of grids. The first dimension might be skin color. So the pictures horizontally might range from fair to dark. On the vertical dimension they might range from narrow faced to wide faced. There might be other dimensions too.

I should be relatively easy to create these grids with the right software. You would have a UI that allows you to manipulate the various parameters until you had a grid of images that fit an particular population. I recommend the team that created the Netflix UI grids.

Of course you must abandon the whole technique of using composite photos. Beauty is presumably a proxy for health and fertility. A person who has developed with symmetrical features is likely to be healthier and therefore more beautiful. So with composite photos you make everyone more beautiful first and then try to figure out who benefited most - hardly a sensible procedure.

Presumably populations vary on facial symmetry. We shouldn't just throw out that information. It may very well be that Lithuanian women include some of the very best looking women around but they are only a small percentage of the whole whereas Serbian women generally look much better but don't have any of those rare beauties you find among the Lithuanians.

Albertosaurus

Anonymous said...

They must have switched the German girl's face with the Swiss one, and then squashed it vertically. Isn't Renee Zellweger a "Swiss Miss"? They always have to make the Germans look awful.

Saint Louis said...

I mentioned at Roissy's, and I'll repeat it here, that I'd like to see a composite of some of the composites. For example, would a composite of the German, French, and Welsh photos look a lot like the composite English one? I bet it would.

By the way, the top 5 are Uzbekistan, Israel, Peru, France and Italy.

The bottom 5 are Ireland, Samoa, Hungary (wtf happened there?), South India, and Central Africa.

And Roissy must have very odd taste in women if he thought the Korean one was the best of the East Asians.

Abdullah Ibrahim Yamaguchi-O'Leary said...

Inspired by this, I began work on my own composite faces of college-aged girls for each of the U.S. states. Thus far I've only done Alabama, and 'Bama itself isn't likely finished:

http://1440minuteshate.blogspot.com/2011/02/what-does-average-alabama-girl-look.html

The asymmetry of the face is due to the last two girls' faces turned in opposite directions; I probably should either diffuse that effect with more faces or simply go back and take out one of them. Anyway, mine is a composite of 24 randomly-chosen college girls. I was going to do both large populations in 'Bama--but you can read about the software's problems with dark faces over at the link.

Mr. Anon said...

From left to right - french, german, greek.

These composite photos however seem pretty well worthless. The "average mexican woman" doesn't look anything like the average mexican women I see around my town.

Mel Torme said...

"So sorry I didn't marry that Chinese guy 20 years ago, Steve, ..."

Why don't you just use "Gay Anonymous" as your handle next time. My Vulcan logic says: if you are a woman, why would you want to look at these pictures of beautiful girls, and what do you know about "hot"? If you are a guy, why were you even thinking of marrying a Chinese guy 20 years back? It was still illegal for you then.

Well?

Dana Thompson said...

I think we all have a basic biological urge toward exogamy, which conduces to the good of the species. After a few generations of marrying into neighboring farm families, within a few kilometers radius, the personalities and other attributes of our neighbors become blandly homogeneous, and the marriageable chicks are all dull as dishwater. But ahh, those exotic, alluring babes beyond the furthest range of hills! Time to pick up the lance and go in search of adventure!
I'm equal parts Scotch Irish and German Swiss, but I don't find the Irish or Swiss girls particularly appealing. But I certainly linger over the images of France and Spain. Do others have that same perception, that their own ethnicity is less appealing than that of a remote (but not too remote) region?

Anonymous said...

That English girl looks too sober to be English.

smead jolley said...

Has anyone noticed that Greeks tend to be somewhat deracinated, kinda like blacks?

ironrailsironweights said...

Best European: Italian
Best Asian: Taiwanese
Best black: West African
Best Latin: Peruvian.

Peter

Anonymous said...

Re: variation:

Yes, variation around the mean is not identical between populations, so these composites lose information.

A visual example of this can be found at http://www.faceresearch.org/demos/transform, which is the site the composite maker used to generate the composites. This demo allows users to transform faces by the difference between two other faces, and includes a set of racial ("Caucasian", "Afro-Caribbean", "East Asian", "West Asian") and male and female faces.

So in theory you could upload a picture of some person and get their "other sex" or "other race" version - however, in actual fact, because the structure of population variation is different between the groups (e.g. the racial groups) the output face will usually look subtley different to any actual face of that race or sex that you have seen, even though it is still recognisably of that group.

This would probably be the case even with the intra-European or intra-Asian composites here - i.e. stick in a picture of Monica Bellucci, transform her by the difference between Italians and Poles, and the output face wouldn't quite look like a *Polish* person. Or take say Zhang Ziyi and transform her between the difference between the Chinese and Korean faces - the output wouldn't look quite like any Korean actually would, although it would be close. Or more interestingly, if this were done with someone who had a very distinctive face for their nationality (I think De Gaulle is someone I remember you citing as like this, Steve).

Anonymous said...

I'll say this. Those black women sure look better than Michelle Obama.
I think Obama's biggest, truest, and most blatant act of black nationalism was settling down with Michelle. He could have had a good looking and very smart white woman, Jewish woman, or a mulatto woman. But, he went out of his way to marry a black woman from the South Side of Chicago. Sure, she got into Harvard but he must have known she's one of the affirmative action babies. She was and still is unmistakably black. The more white liberals try to dress her up and make her look more cross-over mainstream, the more her black features and demeanor sticks out.
Some black men marry blondes as trophies. To Obama, Michelle was a trophy of black authenticity.

I think Obama's choice of wife had more to do with ideology than love. He was into the 'rediscover my African roots thing' and decided to marry a real AFRICAN looking woman... like the light-skinned Malcolm X believed black men must return to their roots and choose BLACKNESS. Without such ideological fixation, Obama probably would have done what Tiger Woods did.

Aaron Baugher said...

The biggest surprise for me was how attractive I found the French composite. She appears to be looking into my soul. Maybe there's something to that storied French sensuality after all.

Severn said...

An interesting topic but a pretty meaningless way of going about it. How many pictures went into making these composite images? What effort was made to ensure that that those pictures were a representative cross-section of young women in their respective countries?

I'm pretty sure that the answer to that second question would be "None". In general all the composite women look suspiciously light-skinned - is that REALLY what the average Israeli woman looks like, or is it heavily drawn from the Russian sub-population?

The image quality is also quite poor. You have to do a little "filling in" in your own mind as to what these women would look like in the flesh.

Anonymous said...

What's wrong with South Indian?

I see her as terribly plain compared to almost all the other profiles. Do you see something else?

Severn said...

Are we allowed to point out that Jewesses are incredibly hot right up until about the age of 30

"Jewesses" can be, and usually are, of many different races. Some are hot, some are not.

Anonymous said...

Are we allowed to point out that Jewesses are incredibly hot right up until about the age of 30, at which point they suddenly become just unbelievably hideous?

This is true of all Semites and Mediterranean types. Girls in southern Italy and southern Spain are drop-dead gorgeous by 14, and suddenly turn fat, warty, and moustached at age 30.

corvinus said...

I thought Roissy's comments hilarious, and pretty much states a lot of what I thought when looking at the pics.

A few people (including Roissy) have mentioned there is no "white American", although there is "white South African". My impression of the average "white American" girl would be more or less the same as the English girl.

My brother was quite surprised at how good looking the averaged English girl was, and joked that this is how Australian girls look, since while English girls are a bit inbred, Australians were descended from convicts from all parts of England (and Ireland) thrown together.

It's funny how Polish and Russian women are very similar, except for the Russians having much finer features. This would confirm my observation that while Russian women can be smokin', Polish women don't do anything for me. The Baltic women just look plain weird.

I was a bit ticked to not have Dutch, Danish, or Norwegian, but I guess they'd be pretty close to the English, German, and Swedish. Scottish would have been interesting too. Also, I wanted to see Czech, Slovak, Croatian, and Austrian. Oh, and Georgian and Armenian.

Truth said...

"think Obama's biggest, truest, and most blatant act of black nationalism was settling down with Michelle..."

Yeah, or uh...maybe he liked her?

not a hacker said...

Haven't read every comment, sorry. Has anyone mentioned that the English composite is prettier than the French one? Who disagrees?

IHTG said...

Steve, you should update your post to link to the source of these images. People aren't reading the comments to find it and making uninformed statements.

Anonymous said...

"Are we allowed to point out that Jewesses are incredibly hot right up until about the age of 30, at which point they suddenly become just unbelievably hideous?

This is true of all Semites and Mediterranean types. Girls in southern Italy and southern Spain are drop-dead gorgeous by 14, and suddenly turn fat, warty, and moustached at age 30."

Too much sun and/or too many calories and/or too much androgen.

Doug1 said...

Steve--

The guy who created them can in and started commenting on that Roissy thread, and explains his method here:

http://roissy.wordpress.com/2011/02/07/and-the-country-with-the-most-beautiful-women-is/#comment-234634

Anonymous said...

"Avoiding the "Rumor Willis effect" of too masculine guys producing daughters with unfortunately masculine jaws/brows."

It's my belief that beauty will always be in short supply because masculine men prefer feminine women and vice versa.

Anonymous said...

The White South African woman would fit in nicely in my extended family. As would the Swiss girl, if she darkened her hair a little. And my background is Irish, English and French. I think all the Northwest European composites don't have narrow enough faces. Their faces are all too round and wide compared to the people I see everyday (who come primarily from British/Irish/German/French/similar backgrounds)

Anonymous said...

Speaking of looks, who do you think are the ten most beautiful women since 1900? It seems me that the truly beautiful women have some 'defect', a feature that in most cases wouldn't be pretty but which, in just the right physical dosage, gives that extra distinction that elevates a woman from merely gorgeous to sublime. This may be why a lot of women reach their peak around 35. Age adds a certain character--multiple shades than the mere brightness of youth--to their beauty. Deneuve was conventionally prettier than Moreau, but Moreau had something unique. Moreau's features could even be ugly if they were a little more exaggerated, but they are just right on her face to make her a one-of-a-kind beauty. And she had a killer voice.

How about for top 10..

Jeanne Moreau
Lauren Bacall
Michelle Burke(late Rene Thomas)
Claudia Cardinale
Monica Bellucci(unforgettable in The Apartment)
Joan Crawford
Rita Hayworth
Judy Woodruff
Sarah Palin
And of course,
the Athena-like Kathryn Bigelow.

Anonymous said...

"http://1440minuteshate.blogspot.com/2011/02/what-does-average-alabama-girl-look.html"

Whoa. This composite is scary good. As someone who lives in the state, I can verify this is extremely close to what the average Alabama college girl looks like. I see similar faces every single day. The face shape and the coloring is accurate (brown eyes and light or medium brown hair, oftentimes dyed even lighter though)

Anonymous said...

"I finally had a look at the entire gallery and I find that I am totally enamored of the Eastern Europeans; the Baltic states in particular including Finland. That surprised me."

I finally had a look at the entire gallery, and I find that I am totally enamored of beautiful young women.

None of them look like they majored in physics or computer science. I have spent the past two decades toiling in the groves of hard science academe and the few women I know look like something the cat dragged in. I would drop my test tube in a jiffy to run off with any one of these fantasy averages.

Severn said...

I think somebody want to online dating sites from different countries, grabbed maybe a dozen or so pics of young women from each, and made a crude composite of them.

The results are just not an accurate reflection of what women in these countries look like. They are both better looking and in many cases a lot paler than they should be. Look at Puerto Rico - you think that looks like the average young Puerto Rician woman?

Abdullah Ibrahim Yamaguchi-O'Leary said...

"Whoa. This composite is scary good. As someone who lives in the state, I can verify this is extremely close to what the average Alabama college girl looks like. I see similar faces every single day. The face shape and the coloring is accurate (brown eyes and light or medium brown hair, oftentimes dyed even lighter though."

Yeah. I was struck by how the pointy chin really came through--I see that a lot in this state.

My so-far unfinished "Alaska" looks a lot like Alabama, unexpectedly...

Svigor said...

These girls were chosen from WAY ABOVE AVERAGE. It's like a beauty contest.

New to HBD? The meaning of average varies widely with context. In this context, it doesn't mean "average looks," it means "composite average formed with a selection of photos and morphing software."

Svigor said...

Do any of the girls look as much like a famous guy as the Samoan girl looks like Jay Laga'aia?

Svigor said...

Over the years, I've witnessed it repeatedly in my own personal life - Jewish chicks whom I dated back in the day, who were phenomenally gorgeous at the time, are now more than a little difficult to look at.

(Melanie Horowitz/Winona Ryder. Seriously hot in her youth, seriously degraded in middle age.)

Aren't the nose and ears the only parts of the body that keep growing throughout a person's lifetime?

Steve Sailer said...

"Steve, you should update your post to link to the source of these images"

Well, what exactly is the source? I've looked at PMSOL.com and Face Research and I'm having a hard time figuring out exactly how they are related.

Svigor said...

Stating what is mere opinion as though it were incontrovertible fact is irredeemably Roissy-esque.

Personally, I've never been able to see this side of the eastern european.


So true. I've never agreed with the Slavic chicks rule thing, at least, not based simply on looks. I've always had a thing for chicks with Celtic admixture. Not uber-Celtic (too-pale, too-freckled, dark red hair), but nicely-Celtic (pale, lightly freckled, strawberry blonde). There's a substantial element of Slavic populations that fit this description, and these are the ones I find most attractive.

JSM said...

"My Vulcan logic says: if you are a woman, why would you want to look at these pictures of beautiful girls, and what do you know about "hot"?"

I'm not Gay Anonymous.
But I'm a woman: Here are MY reasons: (A) Check out the competition.
(B) Beauty is objective. A woman can appreciate another woman's pretty face -- so long as she's not after your husband.

Mark said...

Man, I gotta get out more. There are some insanely beautiful chicks out there.

Anonymous said...

Here's a guy how downloaded photos from Hot or Not and averaged the girls in 15 classes, based on their attractiveness ratings.

The under-3.5s are still ugly, but not THAT ugly. The 9.5-pluses are quite pretty.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/pierre_tourigny/146532556/lightbox/

Cennbeorc

Anonymous said...

That Alabama girl is really odd. Pretty, but a bit of an outlier, I would have thought, with that pointy chin. Imagine a state where she is the average.

Cennbeorc

Severn said...

The meaning of average varies widely with context. In this context, it doesn't mean "average looks,"

In this context it pretty much DOES mean "average looks". The average girl looks, by definition, average. These girls are not average.

Anonymous said...

"think Obama's biggest, truest, and most blatant act of black nationalism was settling down with Michelle..."

"Yeah, or uh...maybe he liked her?"

He liked her racial attributes than her.

Svigor said...

"That Alabama girl" is just that; a girl from Alabama. No composite, no morph, no averaging, no collection of photos.

Just a picture of some chick, with the background modified in Photoshop.

Has to be said...

"Look at Puerto Rico - you think that looks like the average young Puerto Rician woman?"

It's the average Puerto Rican woman who posted her picture on the internet. I.e. middle to upper class. This probably explains why Miss South Africa looks so white.

It would be interesting to see what a composite of the lower classes looks like. Which brings me to this idea. Can someone download a bunch of mugshots (e.g. from thesmokinggun.com) and use them to create an average face?

Anonymous said...

How about for top 10..

Any Top 10 of the 20th Century begins and ends with Grace Kelly.

Ingrid Bergman would be a distant second, and then there'd be everyone else.

Truth said...

"He liked her racial attributes than her."

There just has to be a constructive use for that psychic ability you possess.

Anonymous said...

It would be interesting to see what a composite of the lower classes looks like.

That gets back to my point - that I swear I can see intelligence [or the absence thereof] in a chick's face.

And I suspect that chick's can see it in guys' faces, as well.

none of the above said...

Severn:

No, it really doesn't mean average in the sense you're thinking at all. Averaging the images together creates a more-symmetric face with no unusual features (ugly mole, big nose, cute dimple, whatever), which means a (generally) more attractive face, than most of the women in the picture.

To get an average-in-attractiveness picture from some set, you'd need to get people to rate the women, so you could decide on a *median* face in the set. (The girl who was in the middle; half the girls in the set are prettier and half are uglier than she is.) That median face would look less symmetric, and so generally not as nice, as the averaged face. But it would be a face you'd be unsurprised to see from that group.

ironrailsironweights said...

When I was working in Manhattan several years ago I noticed a group of five female flight attendants for Uzbekistan Airways waiting outside a hotel for their shuttle to JFK. All five of them were stunning, eights or above on the familiar 1 - 10 scale. Your chances of finding a similar number of similarly beautiful flight attendants on any U.S. airline would be, oh, zero would be a reasonable estimate.

What was interesting about the five beautiful Uzbek ladies was that they were from distinctly different ethnic backgrounds. Two of them were blonde Scandinavian-looking types, two of them were of a dusky Middle Eastern or Iranian appearance, and one was East Asian.

Peter

none of the above said...

As far as seeing intelligence in someone's face, you probably see:

a. Good nutrition and environment while growing up.

b. Enough money for cosmetic dental work and perhaps cosmetic surgery.

c. Lack of nose piercings, tattoos, etc.

d. Social class conveyed by proper grooming and makeup and dress.

None of those are intelligence, but all correlate with it to some extent.

Steve Sailer said...

I suspect there are several levels of selection for prettiness going on in the pictures: nice looking people are more likely to post their pictures on the web than not nice looking people, people post their best picture not their average picture, and Google Images is more likely to float the popular people toward the top.

So, averaging makes people look better, but it doesn't account for just how much better these look. For example, if the average person is above the aesthetically ideal weight, averaging can't make that go away.

Anonymous said...

Obviously beauty is a function of two things -- the hard, unchanging substrate (the skull), and the distribution of soft tissue (cartilage, muscle, fat, and collagen). Age tends to wreck the soft tissue but not the hard substrate, but in rather random ways. So averaging older women should result in a face not much different from younger women.

Pierre Tourigny has indeed shown this.

Beauty is a strong function of the hard substrate (the skull) and only somewhat dependent on the soft tissue, which has the capability of obscuring the hard substrate, in the case of obese women (as Steve points out).

http://www.flickr.com/photos/pierre_tourigny/146532556/lightbox/

Anonymous said...

d. Social class conveyed by proper grooming and makeup and dress.

None of those are intelligence, but all correlate with it to some extent.


"d)" would be the closest, but I think it's something much, much deeper even than that.

For instance, why does Sissy Spacek's countenance suggest regality [or even royal blood?], but Britney Spears's does not?

And I'm not even sure that it's learned behavior - I suspect that much of what we perceive to be "practiced insight" in these matters might actually be a kind of biological memory [or a biologically-based intuition] which is deeply & profoundly ingrained in our DNA.

PS: I just threw Sissy Spacek in there on a whim [I was trying to think of an American equivalent to Cate Blanchett], and, lo and behold, Wikipedia says that Sissy Spacek is a Mayflower descendant.

Which, in turn, very likely means that she's got royal blood in her.

I tell you, this "sixth sense" is really powerful.

PPS: The British equivalent to Britney Spears would be someone like a Geri Halliwell.

Steve Sailer said...

Sissy Spacek is from Quitman, Texas, which is the middle of nowhere. But, interestingly enough, she's the first cousin of another Texas farmtown kid, Rip Torn, who was always a little too crazy to fulfill his potential, but is still an astonishing "king" actor.

International Jew said...

This quiz tests your ability to identify different kinds of east Asians:
http://alllooksame.com/quiz.php?tid=1

I did no better than blind random selection.

Anonymous said...

But, interestingly enough, she's the first cousin of another Texas farmtown kid, Rip Torn, who was always a little too crazy to fulfill his potential, but is still an astonishing "king" actor.

I'm telling you Steve - this stuff goes deep into our bones.

The more I learn about the history of the modern world [and its genealogy from, say, the Magna Carta Sureties, down through the Plantagenets -vs- the Tudors, and on into the 100 Years' War and its aftermath], the more I feel as though there is something in our genes which just keeps bringing the same folks back into contact with one another - over and over and over again.

It's as though we are drawn to one another by some ancient, visceral force of nature - something deep within our DNA which is calling out from one to the other.

Severn said...

To get an average-in-attractiveness picture from some set, you'd need to get people to rate the women, so you could decide on a *median* face in the set.


That's one way of looking at it. Another way is simply look at the set of all female pictures, perhaps restricting for a given age range. For instance, the drivers license database(s) has the photos of many millions of women. No rating takes place, and none should.

Once you have a genuinely representative collection of pictures like this you can get a true average - one based on the truism that the average person looks average.

Asking people to rate a small sample of pictures introduces a multitude of errors into the process. The first source of error comes in selecting a group of raters. The second occurs in selecting pictures for them to rate. And a third takes place in the act of rating. Scientifically speaking, this process is just too suspect.

torpor said...

I am not too familiar with South African whites, but one man was wrote about the extraordinary beauty of the Afrikaans women (obviously not all.) He criticized the current choices of Ms. Afrikaans whatevers, and said people were too afraid to come out in the public and be themselves--if that self was Afrikaan I guees. Anyway, that picture of the white South African is not representative of the "extraordinary" type he was talking about. I'll have to do some research. Maybe the Theron girl? She pretty, but she's not quite what he meant, methinks.

Anonymous said...

Your chances of finding a similar number of similarly beautiful flight attendants on any U.S. airline would be, oh, zero would be a reasonable estimate.
30 years ago it was easy. Uzbek air hasn't discovered PC or gay flight attendants having to be hired for 'equality'.

PS i how is the look of orientals altered by plastic surgery? Isn't removing skin folds in the eye the number 1 cosmetic surgery for orientals/ And what about use of skin lighteners - young women would be likly to do both - and the latter would effect all non whites.

charlotte said...

I was once asked by a lively, curious, (and cute) young guy whether I was a psychiatrist, because I looked like one. Well, I was coming out of the university library and was not wearing glasses. I was too out of his age range to play doctor with him, but I took his observation as a compliment; however, now I'm not sure....maybe he needed a psychiatrist. Maybe it was a cry for help...
nah.

Anonymous said...

" I have spent the past two decades toiling in the groves of hard science academe and the few women I know look like something the cat dragged in. I would drop my test tube in a jiffy to run off with any one of these fantasy averages."

Really? I have a friend who works at NASA and some of the female scientists are very attractive. One was a teen beauty queen years ago and even got fake boobs. They're well dressed too. Not what I would have thought? What hard science are you in ?

globekicker said...

REALLY what the average Israeli woman looks like, or is it heavily drawn from the Russian sub-population?

Speaking as someone who lived in Israel (not Jewish), yes, that is a composite. Even nowadays, I'd say the Ashkenazi component is dominant partly because the Middle Eastern and Sephardic types are not as dark as some imagine. Even intermarriage produces children not drastically different from the Ashkenazis. And young Israelis are among the best looking people. It doesn't seem to last though, for either gender.

Anonymous said...

I guessed wrong. I thought the French composite was the Greek composite and the German composite was the French. The actual French composite looks a lot more like some of the Greek women who were on my floor when I was in college, etc. Most of the actual German women I've met -- and I grew up in an area with people mainly descended from Germans or Scandinavians -- have very solid looks. They tend to have high cheekbones, brown hair, green or hazel eyes, fairly tall and robust bone structure. Some of the German women I know look not unlike Katarina Witt, the '80s ice skater. I wouldn't say the German composite much resembles her. The Swedish and the Finnish composite are pretty much what I would expect, though they're both better looking than your average Swede or Finn. I'd agree that there's something off about the length of face in some of the composites. As a woman, I can't really look at them and see that any of them are "hot" or not. They're all unusually attractive looking 20-year-olds.

Anonymous said...

100 Years' War

Oops - meant to say the 80 Years' War.

Charlie George said...

Wikipedia says that Sissy Spacek is a Mayflower descendant.

Huh? She may look like one of ours (British) but what sort of name is Spacek? It sounds like something from the bowels of the Soviet Union.

PPS: The British equivalent to Britney Spears would be someone like a Geri Halliwell.

Britney is also one of ours. Britney's Grandmother was a G.I. bride from Tottenham, North London:
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/tvshowbiz/article-1056674/exclusive-first-photos-britney-spears-newly-discovered-british-family.html

bleach said...

Heey that Swiss 'composite' pic is just a headshot of a 30ish Jodie Foster!

I wouldn't call them the HOTTEST but I can definitely see why a lot of people (ok, liberals) push the idea that racial hybrids are better looking on average...you can see that these admixed types are quite attractive and unique. look at the Uzbek (Caucasoid/Mongoloid) Ethiopian (Caucasoid/Negroid) northern Indian (Caucasoid/Australoid/Mongoloid?) Peruvian (Caucasoid/AmInd), they are all very striking, better looking than a lot of the 'types' on either side of the racial fringe

Anonymous said...

"Really? I have a friend who works at NASA and some of the female scientists are very attractive. One was a teen beauty queen years ago and even got fake boobs. They're well dressed too. Not what I would have thought? "

NASA warehouses a lot of scientists and subcontractors; the occurrence of a handful of lookers is inevitable. Give us some statistics instead of hearsay evidence. Better yet, have your friend use the photo directory for NASA Ames or NASA GSFC and post a picture of the average face for a female PhD working at NASA.

I predict it looks like the average for the lowest decile of Hot or Not.

Anonymous said...

"The Swedish and the Finnish composite are pretty much what I would expect, though they're both better looking than your average Swede or Finn. I'd agree that there's something off about the length of face in some of the composites."

In order to do facial averaging I'm guessing that each sampled face needs to be distorted so the eyes, nose, mouth can be skewered on a four point template. This may be the reason for all the faces averaged by nationality looking so similar. It's why you need an a priori rating system (like in Hot or Not), so you can determine the templates for uglier and prettier before averaging, no?

Referring back to the Pierre Tourigny face galley showing averages of female faces binned by hotness score, I think I now understand the progression from ugly to pretty. Ugly women have larger jaws and maxilla, beadier eyes, and smaller foreheads. As jaws and maxilla become smaller and more delicate, eyes and foreheads become more pronounced, and women appear more "hot." I also see some evidence of the eyes becoming somewhat more widely spaced as women become hotter.

Of course, I'm totally pulling all this out of my ass, but you'd think plastic surgeons already know stuff like this and talk about it endlessly at conferences.

Anonymous said...

"I predict it looks like the average for the lowest decile of Hot or Not."

I'd prefer my friend put that effort into averaging out the male faces at NASA, as I am a female and would find the results more interesting. The female scientists in question are over 25, except for one brilliant, blonde, Aspergerish type who is maybe 23, so maybe it's a moot point around here. You know -- usual vampire vibes whenever there's a Pretty-Young-Thing post/thread.
But there are not THAT many female scientists on the level spoken of by my friend. So the fact that there are at least FIVE who were, is impressive. If there are so many more female scientists at NASA as to bring the average prettiness down, well, I'm still favorably impressed.

Sideways said...

These composite photos however seem pretty well worthless. The "average mexican woman" doesn't look anything like the average mexican women I see around my town.

Well, given the method he used to get the pictures, it's the face of the average Mexican woman who puts front facing pictures of herself online. Not likely to be your average computerless peasant

Anonymous said...

"I'd prefer my friend put that effort into averaging out the male faces at NASA, as I am a female and would find the results more interesting."

Nobody really cares what men look like except gay men. All a man has to do is stay fit and healthy and make a decent living, and the beautiful women will beat a path to his door.

Anonymous said...

"Well, given the method he used to get the pictures, it's the face of the average Mexican woman who puts front facing pictures of herself online. Not likely to be your average computerless peasant"

Mexicans access the internet through mobile phones, I thought. Ever see a Mexican woman without a mobile phone?

Just asking.

Anonymous said...

"I predict it looks like the average for the lowest decile of Hot or Not."

That's doubtful. Genuinely ugly people are usually members of the "lumpenproletariat", not the cognitive elites. Nerds are usually just average people who don't spend as much time on their appearance. A random woman from "people of Wal-mart" is more likely to resemble the lowest decile of hot or not than a female scientist is. The average female scientist probably falls somewhere between 3-6.

Abdullah Ibrahim Yamaguchi-O'Leary said...

""That Alabama girl" is just that; a girl from Alabama. No composite, no morph, no averaging, no collection of photos.

Just a picture of some chick, with the background modified in Photoshop."

Er, no...it really is a collection of photos. 24 photos, in fact. I made sure to reduce "bias" by using any Alabama girl's photos I could find, as long as they were more or less facing the camera. I've followed the same "protocols" on all the states I've done so far, with each state represented by 24 photos (nothing special about this number...it's just the number of faces I used for the Alabama one before I got tired).

Anyway:

http://1440minuteshate.blogspot.com/2011/02/more-college-girl-faces-from-states.html

Note the differences in the faces of the CA girl and the AZ girl. The CA girl's face was at least half Latin/Asian but still comes out as a blonde, which surprised me. I don't think AZ was more than about a third Latin, but it seemed those features built up over time.

Anonymous said...

"Nobody really cares what men look like except gay men. All a man has to do is stay fit and healthy and make a decent living, and the beautiful women will beat a path to his door."

As the British say, "You do need telling a lot of times."

As I said, I'm female. I find composite faces of good looking men more interesting. I am not any different from most females, and I dare say the prettier, the pickier.
Females do care, even if their criteria is more flexible. The ones who don't care at all are pretty strange. Beware of that kind.

Severn said...

Nobody really cares what men look like except gay men. All a man has to do is stay fit and healthy and make a decent living, and the beautiful women will beat a path to his door.


There are some really stupid people commenting on this site.

Justthisguy said...

Sadly, I just found out that Google gives exactly one result for "hot aspie chick."

David said...

>How about for top 10..

Jeanne Moreau
[...]
Rita Hayworth<

The fattest man in show biz, Orson Welles, was married to Hayworth and tight with Moreau.

It ain't hopeless, fellas. Get out there.

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