Apparently, women do not fear the beard. In fact, a recent study suggests that women (and men) actually prefer men with a 10-day beard over a clean-shaven face.
A study of 351 heterosexual women and 177 heterosexual men rated health, attractiveness, masculinity and parenting ability based on looking at photographs of men at different stages of facial hair growth—from clean-shaven to "light" stubble, to "heavy" stubble, and fully bearded. The study found that both men and women rated men with beards more attractive, and as better parents.
The study was conducted by researchers from University of New South Wales and published in the journal journal Evolution and Human Behavior. "Our findings confirm that beardedness affects judgments of male socio-sexual attributes and suggest that an intermediate level of beardedness is most attractive while full-bearded men may be perceived as better fathers who could protect and invest in offspring," the researchers wrote.
So even though some say that Real Men Can't Grow Beards, it seems that for some, a bearded man connotes a tough, aggressive, masculine persona—and an ideal romantic partner.
Source: Nature World News
Image of Young Man with Beard courtesy of Shutterstock