I See Psychology… Everywhere

The Science of Beer Goggles

All the fun research takes place in Scotland! Seems researchers there have explored the neuroscience of the effect that alcohol has on the perception of attractiveness in other people. Here’s the formula:

β =

(An)2 x d(S + 1)

√L x (Vo)2

      • An is the number of servings of alcohol

      • S is the smokiness of the area on a scale of 0 – 10

      • L is the lighting level of the area, measured in candelas per square meter, in which 150 is normal room lightning

      • Vo is Snellen visual acuity, in which 6/6 is normal and 6/12 is the lower limit at which someone is able to drive

      • d is the distance between the observer and the observed, measured in meters

The formula works out a “beer goggle” score ranging from 1 to 100+. When β = 1, the observer is perceiving the same degree of beauty he or she would perceive in a sober state. At 100+, everybody in the room is a perfect 10.

h/t Billy, who asks how this works if you’re too drunk to do the math!


9 February 2007 Posted by | Physiological, Sensation & Perception | Leave a comment