By: Fanny Pack ‘23

Photo illustration for “Psych Student Discovers Masks are the New Hottest Fashion Trend”

This just in. The Psychology Department finally found some useful information through one of the way-too-many email surveys they are constantly begging us all to do: people who wear masks are scientifically hotter. We here at The YowlTM didn’t believe it either, ‘til we began to hear some of the stories.

Sophomore Jake Chinstrap was excited to finally connect with a girl that he’d met from his one flex class. They shared numbers for a group project and began flirting with puns about political parties and how folklore saved them in quarantine. One thing led to another, and after several more failed attempts to progress any Fika friend dates into the real deal, Jake asked his partner out for lunch at Commons (daring, we know). All things considered, “the date had been going great. She told me she thought I was cute, and we accidentally bumped hands while waiting in line for the nuggets… we both used hand sanitizer afterwards, but that was the first time I made physical contact with anyone in a long time. It was crazy. It was –– surreal.”

Now, we must warn our readers that the following description may be a bit graphic, and those who are light of heart may want to skip to the psych study’s findings marked below.

Jake continued, “Like I said, things were going great until we both sat down on the light side at one of the tables for two, except it wasn’t awkward this time because I was sitting with someone else…Anyways, we both made eye contact and giggled for a few seconds. I swear I could see our future together. Kissing at the well, and President Quillen officiating our wedding…but then…we both reached to take our masks off at the same time. And as that white cloth uncovered the nose, I realized that I wished we’d met through Zoom because what her mask was hiding below was nothing like I imagined. I thought I knew what to expect under there. And she wasn’t ugly or anything –– I don’t simp, but I do respect women –– and she was cute, but I just thought I knew what her face would be like. But it was just…normal? And kind of flat-ish? I couldn’t help myself, but I felt so disgusted at not seeing what I had expected her to look like, and I began to gag. Apparently she felt the same way when she saw my chinstrap, which I only began growing during quarantine since this is the only time in my life when it would be covered for most of the time…except for when I was eating. Anyways, I puked on my nuggets. She tried to hold it in…but she puked in her mask like a little bucket. Then one by one, the puking spread as others smelled and saw the mess. Within two minutes I’d say that Commons was a health hazard, and not from their food. Everyone was puking. Except for Edwin…I don’t think he puked. He came up and handed me a rag to clean myself up and went back to handing out to-go cups for people who needed some water. What a nice guy.”

Jake abstained from revealing his date’s name, and he asked us to do so as well. This really was a tragic incident, but due to the large quantity of first-years who thought they were applying for a work study and ended up serving yogurt at Commons, they had plenty of staff to help clean up the mess. Union even sent over a few of those workers who just stand there behind the counter waiting to hand out meals doing nothing, even though when you try to order online, the next available time slot isn’t for another few hours.

Anyways, a recent study from the Psychology Department sheds some light as to why this horrendous event may have occurred.

IF YOU CAN’T CHOKE IT DOWN, START READING HERE

Junior Mary Maria ‘22 was eager to publish the results of her study as soon as she found out. “I consider it my civic duty to encourage people to wear masks on campus. I consider the safety of my peers during this pandemic my number one priority.”

The results from the study concluded that when two groups of people are asked to rate the “hotness” of an individual, photos of the same person wearing a mask are found to be rated on average 35 percent higher than a similar photo without the same subject wearing a mask. 

Translation: MASKS = HOT

The study couldn’t identify a clear cause for this phenomenon, but several unique theories exist. Some suggest that the eyes and hair are the most seductive features, while the nose and mouth are the least. This theory suggests the act of wearing a mask tends to hide our worst parts while highlighting our best features. The researchers went on to suggest “that a tight fitting mask can highlight a nice jawline while obscuring blemishes in the skin” as well as “even subjects whose masks were looser and more pointy in the nasal region display features of a more forward face that is much more attractive than their naturally unmasked flat face’s.”

These findings seem to suggest that it may be working in our favor to wear a mask not only during a pandemic, but also during mating season as well. Forget dick pics and nudes, what your Snapchat messages might be missing is a nice masked shot to highlight your eyes while obscuring the odd shape of your nose.

When considering your newest thing, consider this, dear reader: you’ll have to take your mask off eventually. Masks are in season, and it might be a little quirky and kinky to keep it on while you’re getting down. But no matter what, please: be safe. Be sexy. And strap on your mask.