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The Beauty for Life Study

What do people find attractive about themselves and each other?  The answers are surprising.  Recently, the American Society of Plastic Surgeons and the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery conducted a survey asking these very questions.  People in their 20s, 30s, 40, 50s, and 60s were each asked a series of questions.  Their answers are as follows.  They are not what you would expect!

“What aspect of physical beauty do you find most appealing in another person?”

People in their 20s-40s responded that they considered a fit, well-proportioned body to be most important.  For those in their 50s and 60s, youthful skin was the most important.

But when people were asked, “Which part of your body are you most concerned about,” the answers were different.  Only those in their 30s responded that they were most concerned about their body.  Everyone else was more concerned with their face!


Beauty standards that we have for ourselves are apparently not the same as those we have for others.

Other interesting findings in this study include the fact that in regards to the body, more people were concerned with their abdomen and hips than their breasts for each decade.  And when asked what “the most important reason to maintain your physical appearance” was, the overwhelming reason across all decades was to boost self-confidence.  The second most popular reason for those in their 20s was “to attract potential partners.” For those in their 30s, 40s, and 50s, the number two reason was “to increase professional opportunities,” and for those in their 60s, it was “to help make friends.”

You can access the original summary from the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery at

And the actual Beauty for Life survey results at

Dr. Carolyn Chang, San Francisco Plastic Surgeon