How Important Is the Nose in Attractiveness?

Rhinoplasty or a nose job is one of the most common plastic surgery procedures. But just because everyone is doing it doesn’t necessarily mean fixing the nose will make you significantly more attractive.

The nose is relatively important in facial attractiveness. It is in the center of your face, and how it looks can affect your facial symmetry. A good nose is inconspicuous, and so the worse your nose is, the more important it is for you to fix it. 

Check out the Looks Theory episode on the nose for a primer on the nose’s role in facial aesthetics:

The Nose and Facial Symmetry 

Rhinoplasty Before/After

Symmetry has a significant impact on perceived beauty. For instance, female breast symmetry gets positively correlated to fertility, even if it does not guarantee that it makes a woman more fertile (Little et al., 2011).

So, how does symmetry affect facial attractiveness? Facial symmetry has positive correlations to respiratory diseases (Thornhill et al., 2006). While facial attractiveness and symmetry do not significantly impact our health, it changes how people perceive us. 

The nose is vital to facial symmetry because it is the central organ of our face (Carvalho et al., 2012). For instance, if the tip of your nose is crooked, it can throw off your facial symmetry. 

Another example is if your nose is too large for your face or you have a bulbous tip, it will bring all the attention to your nose, making you look less attractive because it is a distraction from your other features. A good nose is average-looking and allows the eyes to easily pass over it to move on to more important features such as the eyes and jaw

One study showed that people’s beauty ranking increased after rhinoplasty (Chinski et al., 2013). In figure 1 shown in the study, the rhinoplasty was not drastic, but there was less attention drawn to the nose, which enhanced the patient’s overall beauty. 

In the same study, the average age that people guessed the individuals were before surgery was 30-31 years old. After surgery, it was 24-30 years old.

Nose Shape and Personalities

Your nose shape can make people have certain assumptions about you. It can vary based on people’s preferences and cultures. This is called physiognomy, and while it is largely pseudoscience, you can still make some broad generalizations.

For instance, some people want smaller noses to get an angelic look, making them seem kinder and optimistic. People with shorter noses may seem sweet and sensitive.

A long nose could show people that you have excellent leadership skills. If you have a Roman nose, others may think that you are ambitious.

What Is The Most Attractive Type of Nose?

What gets considered to be the most attractive nose shape can vary. Some people have different opinions based on their cultures, preference, etc. However, there are nose shapes that are greater in popularity.

A celestial nose is similar to a snub nose, but it has a subtle and up-turned tip. Many women want this nose shape because it is uncommon and creates an “angelic” appearance. Here is an example of a celestial nose.

Another popular nose shape for women is the Duchess. Kate Middleton is an excellent example of this nose shape. Hence, this nose shape got dubbed “the Duchess.” 

The Duchess featured a straight-edged nose with a small bump at the tip. It is a nose with perfect proportions, but that does not look too perfect, making it an ideal nose shape for many women. But it can also work for men.

The aquiline or Roman nose looks good on men as well. It is a straight nose that usually sits at an almost 90-degree angle. An excellent example of this nose shape is Daniel Radcliffe. 

To learn more about nose shapes, see our guide.

Is It Bad if I Do Not Have the Ideal Type of Nose?

It is essential to know that the most popular type of nose may not suit your face. There are many other things to consider if you want to know what kind of nose will suit your face. 

For instance, if you have a very wide face, a tiny and thin nose may not suit you. If you have a tiny and slender face, a very pointy and long nose may seem oddly large for your face. 

People may also have different ideas of what they consider to be the perfect nose. It can vary based on your culture, personal preference, etc. 

Most cosmetic surgeons agree that the less attention your nose brings to itself, the better. Ideally, your lips, eyes, and cheeks should capture people’s attention, not the nose. So if your nose is too large, it may distract the observer from your other features. 

However, some people have very prominent noses that positively capture people’s attention. Take Gisele Bundchen, for example.

Her nose is not a typical small nose, but she gets called one of the world’s most beautiful women. Her nose is straight, the tip adds symmetry to her face, and the overall shape suits her face. 

What Kind of Nose Shape Should I Choose?

Honestly, there is no “one size fits all” nose shape. Everyone has different features and preferences that will determine their ideal nose shape. Therefore, it would be best to consult with a plastic surgeon to find your perfect nose. 

Most plastic surgeons will encourage their patients to choose a nose shape that suits them or adjust their noses to be in harmony with their faces. While you may love Scarlett Johansson’s nose, it may not suit you, so a plastic surgeon can help you choose the best one. 

Some plastic surgeons may suggest that you do not need a completely new nose shape. For instance, if they notice that you only need to readjust the tip of your nose to improve facial symmetry, that can be a tremendous yet subtle enhancement. 

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