Perfect symmetry : Does it make for a balanced woman?

Symmetry has always been a fashion obsession from the crazy Georgian’s fake doors to make their rooms balanced (visit a National Trust house if you don’t believe me) to Alexander McQueen’s Plato’s Atlantis collection, today’s ‘contouring’ make-up products and now an app that rates a person’s facial symmetry.

Scientists have said for a while that a person’s beauty is determined by how balanced their facial features are- the size and positioning of eye width of the nose etc. Apparently the more symmetrical the features, the more ‘beautiful’ a person looks and now there’s a website grabbing headlines as it will rate a person’s facial symmetry.

The Anaface website lets you ‘score your face’ by uploading a photo and placing various markers on designated facial features. It then gives you a score out of 10 and tells you which features are too big/small. In the name of science (well, curiosity) I gave it a go and found out that while my face’s length to width ratio was ‘ideal’ my nose is too wide and my mouth too narrow. Like most girls I have been paranoid about a spot or two and can always see room for improvement, but I can honestly say I’d never fretted about my nose to mouth ratio!  But now I look at it…it does seem a little ‘off’.

This is not me!

Enough of this madness. Do we really need another tool to tap into dissatisfaction and encourage women to compare themselves to ‘perfect’ models, or now, a scientific formula of ‘beauty’?  To quote the legend (and incredible beauty) that was Audrey Hepburn: “There is more to sex appeal than just measurements.” Well quite. If everybody looked ‘perfect’ and matched this supposedly scientific formula it would be boring and pretty pointless as there’s no accounting for taste! I’m not saying that a level of symmetry is unattractive (unless it’s a Picasso portrait) but unique features make people interesting and attractive. Cindy Crawford’s mole anyone?

According to a press release, Bryan Cooley, CEO of Atama Group LLC, which created the application, the app can be used to highlight a user’s most attractive features as well as those ‘that need improving’. Urgh.

“If you know what features of your face detract from your facial beauty, you can make corrections. Or you can accentuate certain features through cosmetics, different types of glasses, and in the more extreme case plastic surgery. This can have a direct impact on your love life, job performance, promotions and interviews.”

Ouch.  Snap Fashion was formed to embrace individuals’ shapes and sizes, not change them! Our app allows users to find clothes that suit their body shape. It tell users which shape they are (you know the ones- the sometimes confusing Apple and Pear etc) with positive tips to look and feel great without having to change anything about themselves.

It’s the one-size fits all idea of beauty that concerns me. I reckon it’s as important to feel ‘balanced’ and confident inside as it is to
have perfectly symmetrical features…and I won’t be telling you my Anaface score!


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