Puffy-cheeked babies, wide-eyed puppies and staggering kittens: we know cute when we see him. However, we are still learning what it does to our brains and behavior. Once thought to elicit a programmed, primarily maternal, nurturing response, researchers are now learning that cuteness actually triggers unique brain activity in women and men, that goes beyond making sure Junior wants nothing.
Marketers and product designers have known for decades that attractiveness sells, but a number of recent studies show that it’s less about caring and more about empathy, community, and sharing. In fact, understanding what attraction is and how it affects us can help us use its power for good.