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In Japan, it’s quite a common sight to see people walking around or going to work wearing surgical masks. The reason is so they don’t spread germs to others, or potentially catch others’ germs, and they’re all over the place this time of year when people tend to get colds.

However there’s another reason you might see women wearing a surgical mask: research from Hokkaido University says that wearing a mask makes a woman appear significantly more attractive. And if they’re wearing a pink mask, then they basically turn into a supermodel.

Here’s how the researchers at Hokkaido University went about testing this phenomenon:

Researchers had 33 male and female participants rate the attractiveness of woman photographed without masks, wearing white masks, and wearing pink masks. Several of the women in the photographs were the same person, just with a different facial accessory, so the researchers could see how much of a difference wearing a mask would make.

The results were astounding. Women who rated “average” for attractiveness while mask-less skyrocketed to 104 percent more attractive when they were wearing a pink mask, compared to when they were wearing a white one.

And the same went for women who rated “attractive” while mask-less, increasing to 105 percent more attractive when they were wearing a pink mask, compared to when they were wearing a white one.

The study’s obvious conclusion: if you want to look more attractive, wear a pink mask.

▼ Am I doing it right?

However, the next question is why would a pink mask make someone look more attractive? The only theory so far is that the color resembles a young, healthy skin color for Japanese people. That plus the lure of the unknown that gives plain white masks their appeal could just be the one-two punch that makes people’s brains work in this mysterious way.

Here’s what Japanese netizens had to say about this pink peculiarity:

“Hokkaido University, don’t you have anything better to do?”
“I dunno, people wearing masks always look like thieves to me.”
“It only works if everything about you is already attractive except your mouth.”
“So you’re saying if I just cover my whole body I’ll be more attractive?”

That last comment hits the nail on the head. Instead of covering up our imperfections and trying to hide them away, we should embrace them, love them, and turn them into our strengths instead. Or, barring that, we could all just get plastic surgery like lots of people in Korea. That’s fine too.

Source: Hokkaido University via My Game News Flash
Featured/top image via Rakuten