August 04, 2004

The Ideal Female Nose

A recent study looks at the "ideal nose", discovering that patients who seek a nose reduction and the general public generally agree on what constitutes such a nose:

Both groups preferred a nasal profile with a slight scoop (P = .005 for the public and P<.001 for the rhinoplasty group), slight overrotation (P = .08 for the public and P<.001 for the rhinoplasty group), and slight underprojection (P<.001 for both groups). However, the degree of underrotation preferred by the public did not differ significantly from that of the averaged nose.

While the results are not very surprising, one look at the computer-manipulated images in the paper, shows that they do not only deviate from the average, but appear to be unnatural and unconvincing.

Arch Facial Plast Surg. 2004;6:257-262.

The Ideal Nasal Profile : Rhinoplasty Patients vs the General Public

David C. Pearson et al.

Objectives To evaluate whether patients seeking reduction rhinoplasty hold a different concept of the ideal nose than does the general public, and to determine what features characterize the ideal nasal profile.

Methods Twenty-seven patients seeking reduction rhinoplasty and 15 randomly selected members of the public evaluated a series of computer-manipulated photographic profiles using a pictorial visual analogue scale to rate their preferences for several variables. Center-scale images were created from mesh-warped ("morphed") computer averaging of 12 white women. Differences between the rhinoplasty group and the public group were then compared, as was each group's deviation from the center of the scale.

Results Both groups preferred narrowly distributed differences from the "average" profile to a high degree of significance. No statistically significant difference was found between the ideal nasal profiles selected by the rhinoplasty group and the public group.

Conclusions Reduction rhinoplasty patients do not appear to have a different concept of the ideal nose than does the public at large. The ideal nose, as it pertains to the ideal white female profile, has characteristics that differ from a mathematically averaged nasal profile.


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