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Mr Rayon

Is beauty heriditary?

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Do beautiful parents have a higher chance of conceiving beautiful children than ugly parents?

 

Or are the chances about the 50/50 regardless of the level of beauty of both parents?

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Why would it be 50/50? Is the ratio of beautiful to ugly people 50/50?

 

What is your cut off between beautiful and ugly? Attractiveness is pretty much a continuum.

 

Health and nutrition are major contributors to attractiveness, and some (not all, but some) indicators of attractiveness are culture-specific rather than being inherently attractive across all societies.

 

That said, yes, there are some heritable features that are considered more attractive than others. The trick is really that men and women have some differences in what those features are. So a woman that is considered less attractive may have very attractive sons because she passed down features that are considered more attractive in men than in women, and vice versa for fathers and daughters.

 

There is no beauty gene. It depends on what combination of features get passed down, which is a bit of a crap shoot, plus a strong environmental influence. Attractive parents may be somewhat more likely to have attractive children based on attractive features being available to be passed down and also based on the fact that they probably have a history of good health and nutrition themselves, which assumes some degree of affluence which is also heritable, although in a somewhat different fashion than your genes.

 

But it depends a lot on why a set of parents are considered attractive or unattractive rather than just being a single box that is either checked or not to determine their likelihood of having attractive children.

Edited by Delta1212

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Do beautiful parents have a higher chance of conceiving beautiful children than ugly parents?

 

Or are the chances about the 50/50 regardless of the level of beauty of both parents?

 

 

Genetics indisputably plays a part in determining if a person is endowed with physical characteristics that society thinks of as attractive, or beautfiul.

 

Thus, if both parents of the offspring ARE themselves endowed with physical traits that we think of as beautiful--a highly subjective term, mind you--than yes, of course, the chances that progeny also will benefit physically from the inherited genes are greater than is the chances an offspring of two parents whom were NOT imbued with desirous physical traits.

 

None of this is guaranteed, however. We have things like atavism and also genetic mutation that can be factors in determining how many of a parent's genes are visible in progeny. And contrary what a lot of people think, a child doesn't inherit a "50-50 mix" of their parents' genetic traits. Like for example, little Johnny's eyes are not a mix of those of his mom and dad. Rather, they are either or! That is, 100% of these genes he inherited to "code for" or "select in" to construct his eyes come from one parent or the other.

 

This is the case for ALL physical parts: eyes; hair; facial shape; ears; skin tone, et al. IT's one or the other, as in shuffling a deck of cards, a card for each trait. You get the card from either the "Mom" or the "Dad" stack. You don't get half a card from each stack for one trait.

 

I bring all that up so make the point that sometimes a certain combo of mom and dad traits may not necessarily result in an overall appearance that we think of as being attractive.

 

Yet, overall and generally speaking, the answer to your OP question is "yes." A kid of good-looking parents has a much better chance of being good looking themselves than does a kid from so-so or downright unattractive gene suppliers.

 

Thanks!

 

VB

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so you guys all agree that, putting everything constant:

(A) TWO ugly parents have sex and conceive a child. (B) TWO beautiful parents have sex and conceive a child.

 

(A) will definitely on average have more ugly kids

(B) will definitely on average have more beautiful kids

 

Are the outcome differences relatively negligible or are they noticeable?

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Looks are the sum of individual features which depends on if they match harmoniously with cultural or personal expectations of what constitutes 'beautiful'. I can picture a face where each feature is perfect but completely mismatched to make an ugly one. Of course it's hereditary, where else does information come from?

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There are two ways to look at this question. I'm quite sure that the answers given relate to the intended meaning.

But I think the other meaning is more interesting.

Is our "sense of beauty " inherited?

Is there an evolutionary advantage to recognising the beauty of inanimate objects?

It's clear that there has to be some sort of "mate selection" and that's one side of beauty.

But is there a heritable reason why I think a flower or a landscape is beautiful?

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Velocity-Boy: "You don't get half a card from each stack for one trait."

 

I agree with your point, but your statement isn't quite correct. You receive one full allele from each parent. Those two alleles, depending on the mix of dominance and or recessiveness (and even more complicated for polygenic traits) then determines the resulting phenotype. Thus, for each trait in the offspring there really is one- half from each parent. What I think you were trying to point out is that the expressed trait (the phenotype) will not be an average of the two contributions, with which I fully agree.

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Beauty changes with time and upbringing. So there IS no standard. Miss USA this year looked like a stick figure. That was quite difference from Greta Garbo or Cid Charisse. In China beauty was considered to be weight.

 

So no - YOUR idea of beauty might be hereditary but the definition of beauty is not static.

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Well of course "beauty" is hereditary.

 

There are certain features that are more or less seen as universally attractive (for whatever reason.) And these features will be passed down from the parents.

However one of the parent's features/genetics could counteract/ be dominant over the other parent's attractive features.

 

 

What is "beautiful" and what is "ugly" can essentially be tied down to specific physical features...two parents with 'unattractive' features are of course going to create a child that, for the most part, has those same 'unattractive' features.

 

It's not likely for 'ugly' parents to produce attractive offspring...(though of course what is "ugly"/unattractive can be slightly subjective.)

 

 

But because of genetic variation, two 'average' looking parents could have attractive offspring.

 

Since much of attractiveness on a basic level essentially equals facial symmetry and proper facial gender dimorphism, 'attractiveness' could also be somewhat random...that's why one kid of the same family might be more attractive than the other.

Edited by EvanF

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Humans have a poor sense of smell, but good eyesight.

So we mainly use our eyes to discern the suitability of a mate.

The things we look for are health, youth, and lack of damage. And also, we instinctively look for our own species, and are repelled by features that might be closer to a different, but related species. So we like people who look more human, whatever that means.

 

Having symmetrical features probably indicates a good mix of genes, and an easy birth.

Interbreeding often throws up some exaggerated features, and we instinctively shy away from that.

So maybe a pretty face indicates a low level of interbreeding.

Mixed race people are often considered attractive.

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None of this is guaranteed, however. We have things like atavism and also genetic mutation that can be factors in determining how many of a parent's genes are visible in progeny. And contrary what a lot of people think, a child doesn't inherit a "50-50 mix" of their parents' genetic traits. Like for example, little Johnny's eyes are not a mix of those of his mom and dad. Rather, they are either or! That is, 100% of these genes he inherited to "code for" or "select in" to construct his eyes come from one parent or the other.

 

This is the case for ALL physical parts: eyes; hair; facial shape; ears; skin tone, et al. IT's one or the other, as in shuffling a deck of cards, a card for each trait. You get the card from either the "Mom" or the "Dad" stack. You don't get half a card from each stack for one trait.

 

Eye colour is not determined by one gene, and it is not a clear case of dominant vs regressive genes, so eye colour is in a way a mix, although it can range from father's colour to mother's colour to anything in between to a colour neither parent has.

Most physical traits are probably polygenic, so they can be a mix, just not a 50/50 mix.

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Physical attractiveness is the perception of the most suitable mate for reproductive purposes. Ideal physical health is correlated with the golden ratio among the features of the body and high fertility is likely in the presence of high estrogen levels during puberty in females (resulting in stronger feminine features i.e. larger breasts, rounder facial shape) or high levels of testosterone in males during puberty (resulting in stronger masculine features i.e. broad shoulders, square jaw). This principle is simplified and well explained in this video:

 

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