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Selfies Make Noses Look Bigger

Photo from Pixabay

Those who want a body part to look bigger in a photo merely have to take a selfie, or at least, an extreme camera close-up.

What differentiates a selfie from other kinds of photos is that this is a photo taken by a person, usually by stretching their arm out and holding the smartphone, tablet or camera facing them to take the picture. This means that in selfies, the camera will typically be closer to a person’s face than if someone else was taking the photo, Forbes reports. And doing so changes the way the face looks compared to real life.

A team of researchers from Rutgers New Jersey Medical School and Stanford University came up with a mathematical model using facial dimension data across various genders, ages, races and ethnicities from the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health.

The model helped identify how much distortion happens when taking a selfie, particularly for the nose, the closer one’s face is to a camera. When the camera is five feet away, for example, the nose and the rest of a person’s face is at the same angle away from the lens, so there is no disproportionate distortion happening.

But when the camera is closer, around a foot away from a person’s face, the relative nose size can increase by up to 30% for men, and 29% for women. So, people’s noses tend to appear larger in selfies than they really are.

In a publication in Facial Plastic Surgery, nose specialists discussed whether the surge in the selfie trend may be then contributing to the increase in demand for rhinoplasties, or nose jobs. According to a survey by the American Academy of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgeons, more and more cosmetic surgeons are getting patients who want their noses redone in order to approve their appearances.

The study was published in JAMA Facial Plastic Surgery.

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