If you’re stressing out about going bald, stop — your thinning hair might be doing you a favor.
That’s because a new study from researchers at the University of Pennsylvania, titled “Shorn Scalps and Perception of Male Dominance,” found that bald men are viewed as more confident, dominant and taller.
Researchers gave three major tests to college students, both men and women, asking them to rate images of men in terms of attractiveness, confidence and dominance. Some of the images were of the same man twice, one time with a full head of hair and another time bald, according to CBS Philadelphia.
Those surveyed rated bald men as the most confident and dominant. Oh, and they were viewed as nearly an inch taller on average, and a bit stronger as well.
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“Because only their hair was altered in these photographs,” researchers wrote, “other factors cannot account for these differences.”
However, in terms of attractiveness, the bald men didn’t fare quite as well, receiving a significantly lower rating than their thick-haired counterparts on the final two tests, according to researchers.
“This may be because a shaved head is atypical or unusual, whereas attractiveness is correlated with what is prototypical or average,” researchers wrote. “Shaving therefore appears to have complex effects on how men are perceived.”
Because of these findings, researchers wrote that bald men “will fare better economically in negotiations” because of their dominant appearance.
Aside from dwindling attractiveness, that’s good news for a lot of men. According to the American Hair Loss Association, 85 percent of men will have significantly thinning hair by the age of 50. And for those of us destined to lose our ’dos, it starts early: 25 percent of men who have male pattern baldness will start to lose hair by age 21.
There’s more bad news, however. The study also found that balding can also make a man look four years older on average.
Still, if your hair is starting to thin, the researchers have a bold suggestion — toss out that Rogaine and just shave it all off.
“Instead of spending billions each year trying to reverse or cure their hair loss,” they write, “the counterintuitive prescription of this research to men experiencing male pattern baldness is to shave their heads.”
“These men might better improve their well-being by finishing what Mother Nature has started.”