Sure, actress Amber Heard is a total babe, but now, apparently, science has “proven” that she has the most beautiful face in the world.
British cosmetic surgeon Dr. Julian De Silva used the Golden Ratio of 1.618—an ancient Greek measure of physical perfection—to map out the ideal placement and proportion of facial features, and then rank which stars look best. Heard matched the mathematical face mask the closest, with Kim Kardashian and Kate Moss a very close second and third. Emily Ratajkowski (fourth) got the top spot for lips, Kate Moss scored for best forehead, and Rihanna (not in the overall top 10) ranked highest for face shape, according to the researcher.
While this study claims to calculate the ideal “beauty standard,” it actually equals a whole lot of BS. The study uses geometry and science to measure women’s faces, but the true results are social, not scientific.
“This is nothing more than a re-inscribing of certain beauty ideals being propped up at the expense of others,” says Jill Andrew, Toronto-based body image advocate and co-founder of the Body Confidence Canada Awards, with a sigh, after scrolling through the images of celebrities with measurements drawn over their faces.
The “others,” Andrew explains, are those whose physical appearance doesn’t conform to Eurocentric ideals of beauty (for example, a nose that’s 1.618 times longer than it is wide, and lip length 1.618 times your nose width). Selena Gomez (eighth), whose father is Mexican, is the only woman on the study’s top 10 with roots outside Europe, the UK or the US.
Growing up as an African-Canadian woman in Scarborough, Ont., Andrew remembers being told that she was “beautiful for a black girl,” or that she looked like a “black Mona Lisa”—statements she now realizes come from a society that celebrates the Jennifer Lawrences over the Jazmine Sullivans of the world.
“Not only does it exclude certain women who may not have such fine features or chiseled faces, but it also perpetuates this idea that there is an ideal, which is just not the case,” says Andrew. Instead, she says, this method simply “homogenizes beauty,” pushing women to contour their face like a Kardashian or strategically use lip liners and fillers to get as close as possible to a Ratajkowski pout, rather than seeing themselves as beautiful, just the way they are.
A ranking based purely on physical appearance puts women into a competition where no one wins. “The study encourages the idea that I’m not good enough as I am,” says Andrew. After all, according to the study, even Heard is 8.15 per cent away from perfection.