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Why am I prettier on my period?

Many women report feeling more attractive during their menstrual cycle. The reasons for this are complex and multifaceted. Some research suggests that hormonal fluctuations during a woman’s cycle can physically alter her facial features and skin in subtle ways, making her appear more youthful and symmetrical when ovulating. Additionally, psychological and behavioral changes during this time of the month may boost confidence and enhance self-perception of attractiveness. Understanding the science behind these changes can help explain why you may genuinely feel prettier during your period.

Hormonal Effects on Facial Features

During a woman’s menstrual cycle, levels of estrogen, progesterone, and other hormones fluctuate dramatically. Studies show that around the time of ovulation, when estrogen levels peak, a woman’s facial features may become more symmetrical. Facial symmetry is associated with attractiveness.

Researchers using high-tech 3D scanners found that female faces were more symmetrical during the fertile window of the menstrual cycle compared to other times. Symmetry was greater in both vertical and horizontal planes of the face. Eyes, lips, cheeks, and ears showed more balanced proportions at ovulation when the chances of conception are highest.

Scientists believe that estrogen may promote facial symmetry by affecting bone growth, collagen production, and muscle tone in the face. The more even distribution of structural fat and collagen due to fluctuating estrogen could enhance the proportions of facial features.

Along with symmetry, estrogen may temporarily alter the shape and fullness of facial features like lips and cheeks around ovulation. Some small studies using facial measurement software have found that lip size and cheekbone prominence may increase very slightly during the fertile phase. Theoretically, these subtle shape changes could also contribute to an attractive appearance.

Key Points on Hormonal Effects

  • Estrogen levels peak at ovulation, which may promote facial symmetry.
  • Symmetry in eyes, lips, cheeks, and ears increases during the fertile window.
  • Estrogen may change facial proportions by affecting bone, collagen, and fat distribution.
  • Lip and cheek fullness may also increase around ovulation.

Skin and Complexion Changes

In addition to structural facials shifts, changes in skin quality and coloration occur during menstruation. This is also linked to hormonal fluctuations.

Right before ovulation, when estrogen levels rise sharply, a woman’s skin may become clearer, smoother, and more radiant. Studies using skin biopsies show that estrogen increases collagen production in the skin, leading to thicker dermal tissues. Estrogen also promotes fluid retention in the skin, increasing flexibility, moisture and fullness.

Additionally, the melanocyte-stimulating hormones in the body can darken and redden skin color as estrogen rises. This may lead to a subtle “pregnancy glow” like complexion near ovulation.

Conversely, when progesterone levels spike in the week after ovulation, it can increase sebum production and cause breakouts along the jawline, chin, and forehead.

So in the day or two when estrogen peaks around ovulation, you may notice your usually oily or acne-prone skin appears luminous. This temporary clarity showcases your natural beauty.

Key Points on Skin Changes

  • Estrogen increases collagen, boosts moisture and plumps the skin.
  • Rising estrogen around ovulation leads to a radiant, glowing complexion.
  • Later progesterone spikes can increase oil and breakouts.
  • Clearer skin at ovulation allows natural beauty to shine through.

Enhanced Confidence and Self-Perception

Beyond physical shifts caused by hormones, psychological factors also come into play. The surge of estrogen at ovulation is associated with increased confidence, flirtatiousness, and sexual awareness.

Being in this self-assured state can translate into changed behaviors. A woman near peak fertility may make more effort with her appearance, style her hair differently, wear more makeup, and choose more striking clothing.

She may also exude more charm and sexuality due to pheromones she subconsciously produces to attract a potential mate. This feminine radiance can get noticed by others and serve as a self-fulfilling confidence boost.

Seeing herself in this maximized light near ovulation influences a woman’s self-perception. She genuinely feels at her most beautiful due to how she presents herself and gets perceived.

Key Points on Psychological Factors

  • Surging estrogen boosts confidence, flirtatiousness and sex appeal.
  • Near ovulation, a woman may put extra effort into her look and style.
  • Increased charisma grabs attention and heightens self-confidence.
  • A woman feels at her best due to how she acts and gets treated.

Menstrual Cycle Phases and Perceived Attractiveness

To summarize, research indicates that self-perceived attractiveness shifts across the menstrual cycle in an objective way unrelated to self-esteem issues. But when exactly in the cycle is a woman likely to feel prettiest?

Menstrual Phase

In the first days of menstruation, hormone levels are low and collagen production declines. Facial symmetry and skin quality are reduced. Low energy and the hassle of periods can also dampen self-perception.

Follicular Phase

As the follicle ripens, estrogen slowly rises and skin may improve. But confidence is still rebuilding after menstruation.


Estrogen peaks abruptly right before ovulation, maximizing facial symmetry, skin glow and self-assurance. Objective and subjective attractiveness hit their peak.

Luteal Phase

Progesterone spikes in the week after ovulation, often causing breakouts. Higher testosterone can also increase oil and hair growth. Confidence and charm may decline somewhat as well.

So in summary, women tend to report feeling most beautiful right around ovulation when estrogen peaks and its physical effects on face and skin synchronize with the psychological effects. Understanding your own menstrual cycle can help you tap into and showcase your natural attractiveness.

Key Points on Menstrual Cycle Phases

  • Attractiveness is lowest during menstruation when hormones are minimal.
  • Estrogen gradually rises during the follicular phase, improving skin.
  • Ovulation represents a peak in objective beauty from facial symmetry and skin glow.
  • Progesterone after ovulation can cause breakouts, reduced confidence.
  • Women feel prettiest around ovulation when biology and psychology align.

Tips for Maximizing Your Ovulation Glow

Want to enhance your natural good looks around ovulation? Here are some tips:

  • Track your cycle so you know when ovulation and peak fertility is approaching.
  • Pamper your skin in the days beforehand by masking, moisturizing and exfoliating.
  • Boost hydration and nutrition to magnify the plump glowing effect.
  • Style your hair in a signature way to highlight your feminine confidence.
  • Play up your makeup and wear an outfit that makes you feel gorgeous.
  • Flaunt what nature gave you before your window of peak beauty closes!

The Takeaway

Feeling hot during your period isn’t just in your head. Research shows that hormonal shifts genuinely do make women more facially symmetrical and radiant around ovulation. Beauty is further boosted by the self-assurance and flirtatiousness that comes from rising fertility. By understanding and accentuating these natural effects, you can play up your attractiveness on your period. Just remember, true beauty always comes from within!

Menstrual Cycle Phase Hormone Levels Physical Effects Psychological Effects
Menstruation Low estrogen and progesterone Facial asymmetry, skin dullness Low confidence due to hassle of periods
Follicular Estrogen rising slowly Skin starts improving Confidence increasing but still rebuilding
Ovulation Estrogen peaks Maximum facial symmetry and skin glow Peak confidence and flirtatiousness
Luteal High progesterone Breakouts, oiliness common Mood shifts, slight confidence decline