From the second we turned the legal drinking age, there have been constant reminders from our elders about the negative effects of drinking.
It’s true, booze might not be the healthiest thing to put in our bodies, but it does have some benefits. For starters, it’s been suggested that consuming red wine can decelerate aging and even provide heart benefits. Not to mention alcohol can ease all awkward social interactions and instantly boost confidence.
Liquid courage, anyone?
And now, according to a new study, there’s another beneficial reason to consume alcohol: engaging in social drinking can make you seem more attractive to the opposite sex (when consuming in moderation).
Researchers at the University of Houston discovered that social drinkers were seen as the most attractive (think Don Draper in Mad Men) while heavy drinkers were seen as the least attractive (think Frank the Tank in Old School).
The study examined 594 heterosexual undergraduate students who were shown 25 images of the opposite sex that were accompanied with a random label depicting their drinking habits: ‘This college student frequently drinks heavily’ or ‘This college student drinks socially on occasion’ or ‘This college student never drinks’, and ‘This college student is a recovering alcoholic and therefore abstains from using alcohol’.
The students were then asked to rate each photo to decide how appealing each face was. Students were required to rate on a scale of 0-7 for attractiveness, intelligence, likeability, and approachability.
The results indicated that social drinkers appeared as the most attractive, receiving a median score of 3.69. Recovering alcoholics came in second with a score of 3.42, while people who abstained from alcohol received a score of 3.27. Heavy drinkers placed dead last with a score of 2.86.
So what’s the reasoning behind this? Researchers believed it’s because of a psychological phenomenon called homophily, which is our tendency to bond with people of a similar nature. This definitely holds some truth, as anyone that attended university can tell you, students who drink hang out with other students that drink.
Remember though, at the end of the night it’s safe to assume that most ladies would rather be leaving the bar with Don Draper than Frank the Tank.
Regardless, it would be interesting to see the results of this study when performed on people in their 30s and 40s. We’re guessing social drinking would start to look a little less appealing at that point.