From mobile personality quizzes to in-depth questionnaires, there are a lot of ways to determine someone's personality traits. While some are rooted in science, others are harmless fun.
For years, people have speculated that a person's palms or even finger length could reveal who they are as a person, and while it's been regarded as pseudoscience, new science has revealed there might actually be some truth to it—and it all begins with our hormones.
Fun With Fingers
My apologies for the crude-sounding subtitle, but I had to get your attention somehow.
Fingers! Five digits on each hand, and without them, our lives would look quite different. From grasping and manipulating objects to texting close friends, pointing at things, and using our middle fingers to tell people what we really think of them, they're pretty great and underappreciated.
Before we begin, I'll hazard a guess and say that everyone loves a good personality quiz (do I want to know what kind of potato am I? You bet your butt, I do!).
Anyway, aside from being fun to do, sometimes these quizzes are actually pretty accurate. It makes us wonder what aspects of our personalities are distinguishable by our physical appearance or seemingly innocuous choices on a quiz.
Imagine you're filling out a personality quiz. A lot of the ones you do go a little something like this, "Pick Your Favorite Desserts And We'll Reveal The Career You Should Have." Ten questions later, and you get your results: engineer or doctor???
If you're anything like me, the answer is often wrong and you tell yourself, "This is stupid." But do these personality tests have any merit? Well, according to one study, your hands can actually reveal a lot about you.
A study from 1998 shed light on whether the idea of finger length could reveal information about a person's biology and whether the idea had scientific merit or was a load of malarkey.
Published in Human Reproduction, the U.K.-based study sought to determine whether the ratio of our 2nd to 4th digit length was a predictor for testosterone and oestrogen levels, and if so, what it could reveal about our future health.
What Did The Results Reveal?
Using finger length measurements and blood and sperm samples, researchers came upon an interesting conclusion.
Researchers determined that intimate dimorphism was present in the lengths of men's and women's second (index) and fourth (ring) fingers (referred to as 2D:4D) on both left and right hands. In males, the fourth digit tends to be longer than the second, and in women, the second and fourth digits are equal lengths.
Hormones And The Role They Play
"The dimorphism is present from at least age 2 years and is probably established in utero," the study reads, meaning that exposure to testosterone in utero has future health predictions. Proof of this increased exposure is a longer ring finger compared to the index finger.
Low values of 2D:4D in the right hand were indicative of "high sperm numbers" and "high concentration of testosterone." For women, high levels of 2D:4D were associated with high levels of the luteinizing hormones oestrogen and prolactin in both men and women.
The study revealed that there is a correlation between finger length and overall hormones. But what do these hormones do?
Testosterone is a male hormone responsible for intimate development and promotes secondary features, such as muscle mass and body hair. Oestrogen is a female hormone that regulates the reproductive system and develops breasts, while prolactin generates milk production in women.
Back To The Fun Part
Thank you for staying awake for my science lesson and now back to the fun part!
So we know there is a biological connection between finger length and other biological traits, but there's a theory that claims finger length can also determine one's personality traits, and there's even a chart to prove it. Are you ready?
Personality Traits And Our Hands
Palm readers make their living on telling a person's fortune and future by the lines on their palm, and apparently, aspects of our personalities can also be determined by 10 tiny digits you don't even think twice of—your fingers.
There's a chart that's been making its way across the internet for years now that claims the length of your second and fourth digits can reveal your personality traits. Is it true? We decided to put it to the test.
The chart is divided into three separate categories ranging from type "A" to type "B" and type "C."
To do the test, straighten out your left hand and compare it to the three various images and pick the one that best matches you. How do you fare?
Charming, But Competitive
A type "A" personality trait is characterized by a slightly longer ring finger compared to the index finger. This is the category I fell into, so what do our fingers say our personality is like?
First off, we're charming and tend to be irresistible (guilty as charged). When pushed too far, we can become aggressive but have a knack for getting ourselves out of sticky situations. We're competitive, but wise and love to learn, so people often come to us for advice.
Laid-Back, But Confident
For "B"-type personalities, the index finger is slightly longer than the ring finger. This means that you're an easygoing person who also happens to be a born leader.
You're resourceful, goal-driven, and like to see challenges all the way through until the end. Not only are you a hard worker with tons of ambition, but you're always there for your closest friends.
Prickly, But Protective
For "C"-type personalities, this means that your index and ring fingers are of equal length. You tend to be peaceful and warm, and prefer avoiding conflicts. But when someone does manage to trigger your wrath, it can be seen as shocking to those around you.
You're calm, organized, and loyal to your loved ones and will do anything to protect them.
Long Ring Fingers
For people with a longer ring finger, the greater exposure to testosterone in the womb predicts promiscuity, according to Cosmopolitan. Not only are these people risk-takers and more likely to cheat on their partners, but both men and women are also more likely to be attracted to women.
In addition, people with extra in-vitro testosterone exposure fare better in athletics.
Short Index Fingers
So, what does focusing exclusively on the shortness of an index finger tell us?
Well, people with a short index finger tend to be quick-witted and have a sharp tongue, and both men and women with this trait are more likely to pick fights and respond with aggression if provoked, according to Discover Magazine.
A Longer Index Finger
Meanwhile, Discover Magazine also pointed out that men with longer index fingers and shorter ring fingers were at "a 33% reduced risk of prostate cancer."
And if these men happen to be younger than 60 years old, the risk is even less—87%.
If reading scientific journals isn't quite your style but you still are fascinated by hands and their ability to reveal our personality traits, then perhaps palm reading would be of interest to you.
A long practiced tradition, the four dominant lines on your palm—the heart line, head line, life line, and line of stability—can supposedly reveal a person's vitality, emotions, mentality, and life satisfaction.
An Identical Ring And Index Finger
If a person has a ring and index finger that are of identical length, this means that they were exposed to less testosterone in utero. These people are monogamists and prefer settling down with someone as opposed to dating around.
While these people are more likely to be married and even have an excellent memory, they're also at greater risk of anxiety and depression.
So now that you know there is a biological basis between finger length and hormone levels/personality traits, how did you fare?
Were the aforementioned scientific articles accurate or did you have better luck with the type A, B, C chart? Was this too much science mumbo jumbo and you're just going to stick to palm reading and horoscopes? Let us know!
Brow Game Strong
People with naturally strong, thick eyebrows like Lucy Hale are not only on-trend and the envy of modern, thinner-browed women everywhere, but are also driven and confident. Just like their brows, their personalities tend to be bold and assertive.
According to Jean Haner, an expert on face reading, people with strong brows are more logical, will stand up to others, can handle their emotions, and have a strong libido. That's a pretty decent combination of traits!
Thin Brows = Compassion
Having thinner eyebrows does not necessarily mean you lack the self-confidence of the thicker-browed. People with naturally thin eyebrows, like Jennifer Garner, tend to enjoy helping others and are usually very charitable.
It comes as no surprise that if people with thin eyebrows are charitable and are ready to lend a hand, they are also perceived to be very compassionate and caring. The naturally thin-browed are pure, innocent at heart, and can be counted on to be solid friends.
There are scientific and genetic reasons why some people have freckles. Melanocytes, cells designed to protect skin from UV rays, that are not evenly distributed throughout the body result in freckles.
Some say freckles can reveal things about your personality. For example, it's said you have the soul of a traveler if you have a freckle on your temple. A freckle between your eyebrows might mean you find joy in your work life. And if you have a freckle above your lips you are both attractive and sociable.
People with big, beautiful eyes like Zooey Deschanel have equally big personalities. They are trusting, gregarious, and might even lean toward having a flair for drama. Don't let the drama factor deter you from forming a relationship with a large-eyed person though -- they just have huge hearts and like to open up.
These people are used to hearing all about what big and beautiful eyes they have, and though they like the attention, try throwing them a different compliment from time to time! The wide-eyed are always open to receiving a compliment.
A strong jawline, aside from being one of the sexiest traits in men like Chris Pine, typically means that the person can be driven or competitive in nature. Having a strong jawline is often associated with having high testosterone, so these people have a strong sense of power and can lean toward rule-breaking.
Because of their high testosterone levels, people with strong jawlines might be quite stubborn. When dealing with a strong-willed personality, expect some pushback, especially if involved in a competitive vein.
If you have thinner lips like Jennifer Aniston's, you are pretty independent and don't need to be attached to anyone else's hip all of the time. You love being around others but tend to lean toward being an introvert. You like your alone time and you are 100% fine with it. But for thinned-lipped celebs like Jen, privacy is rare!
In terms of relationships, these people would not do well with a stage-five clinger. It is best to give them their space.
The Bigger The Lips, The Bigger The Love
People with large lips like Angelina Jolie or Lisa Rinna (pictured), are nurturing, giving, and very motherly. This comes as no surprise for Angelina, who's a mother of six! Full lips are a sign of having a strong sense of caring for others.
Individuals with larger lips really value the relationships they have developed throughout their lives. They find joy in putting others first, being a source of warmth and love, and maintaining strong connections with friends and family.
Eye See You
Unlike some of the aforementioned traits, there is much more science to what eye color says about your personality. A study published in Current Psychology found that eye color is linked to how agreeable that person is.
Researchers determined that people with light-colored eyes like blue and green tend to be less agreeable and more competitive than those with brown eyes. People with brown eyes are a little more trusting than those with green and blue eyes, as those people tend to lean toward skepticism.
I Mustache You A Question
Sam Elliot's mustache is the stuff of legend. His chevron facial hair is a manly blend of delicate bushiness and carefully trimmed majesty. Men with this kind of mustache (think Ron Swanson, Alex Trebek prior to 2001, or Burt Reynolds) are masculine and are sure of themselves.
Men with a chevron mustache like Sam Elliot might be the outdoorsy-type, too. It's almost as if the ability to grow facial hair comes with outdoor survival and wood-chopping skills... or at least the look of it!
Woodsman or Hipster?
Lumbersexual facial hair has been 'in' for some time now. What was once reserved for woodsman and lumberjacks can been seen all over Brooklyn and Hollywood no matter what season it is.
Men with big bushy beards like Jason Momoa make a loyal friends and partners and always have something interesting to talk about. Through their beards they are telling the world they are manly men who don't need a clean shave to be respected or approachable.
Earlobes And Empathy
Individuals with attached earlobes might be reserved, but they are very focused in life and love deeply. They are warm, welcoming and gentle people. When they find someone they love and care about, they never let go and will always be there for them.
In addition to being caring and loving, people who have attached earlobes, like Angelina Jolie, are very understanding and empathetic of others. They are great people to be around if you're going through a tough time.
The Square-Faced Do Not Have Square Personalities
If you have a wide forehead and jaw like Demi Lovato's, angular features and some strong bone structure, you have a square-shaped face. People with a square face shape are ready to take on anything and can be pretty competitive in nature.
The people with such angular facial features tend to have stamina, decent leadership skills, and solid decision-making capabilities. A square or rectangular-shaped face means you are hardworking, strong, ambitious, and not very shy.
Big Foreheads, Bigger Hearts
Reese Witherspoon has a classic heart shape. If your face is also more of an inverted triangle where you have a wide forehead and narrower chin, you have a heart-shaped face. People with heart face shapes are very creative and have an inner strength that tells them not to quit.
They value sincerity and have no time for any bull as they can be quite intuitive. Someone with a heart-shaped face is an independent quick-thinker who can see right through the fake people out there.
Oval Face = Warmth
If you have a long face where it narrows at the jawline, then congratulations! You share a physical characteristic with Her Flawless Majesty Queen Bey. People with an oval face shape like Beyonce's are fearless yet welcoming.
They have amazing interpersonal skills and always know how to make others feel welcomed and comfortable. If this sounds like you, then people probably love it when you host a dinner or holiday party! You make everyone feel great and possess warm, inviting confidence.
Round Face, Kind Soul
If you have a wide hairline and fullness below the cheekbones, you have a round face shape. People with a round face shape are givers. If you have a round face, you are a people person who always puts others before yourself... but you tend to forget to treat yo' self, too!
Putting other people first all of the time can be draining, especially if you neglect to take care of yourself. You are giving and kind. Don't be taken advantage of!
What About Redheads?
Personality traits associated with redheads include being mysterious, fiery, romantic, and passionate. Not all red-haired personalities are created equal, however. The stereotype goes that some can be bad-tempered or opinionated, while others are extremely seductive and might even be sexually promiscuous.
Now that we've gone over the stereotypes, how about some science? In addition to the sun, people with red hair are physically more sensitive to pain and cold. According to Psychology Today, they often get colder faster and bruise more easily than their brunette and blonde counterparts.
And Do Blondes Really Have More Fun?
"A blonde walks into a bar..." just kidding. Though we all know the dumb blonde jokes associated with the stereotype, it's just that -- a stereotype! There is a study, however, that showed that the divorce rate is higher among blondes. This may or may not be related to why they are viewed as high maintenance.
Fun fact: a chunk of the indigenous population on the Solomon Islands in the South Pacific are blonde despite their very dark skin tone. This is because their diets are high in fish and they get daily exposure to intense sunlight.
Brunettes And Hair Loss
Brunettes like Pretty Little Liars' Shay Mitchell, pictured, are very hard workers. In fact, the majority of Nobel Peace Prize recipients are brunette. Though they possess the spirit of determination and have solid working and personal lives, they might give up on occasion.
The scientific downside to being naturally brunette is that they have an increased likelihood of becoming addicted to nicotine and losing hair compared to the other shades. Balding is more of a risk with male than female brunettes.
The Bigger The Forehead, The Bigger the Brain
People with broad foreheads like Tyra Banks are very intelligent, self-sufficient, and skilled at many things. Though many people with a large forehead would prefer to hide what they've got under bangs or hats, they actually possess personality traits everyone else wishes they had!
If you have a broad forehead, flaunt it! You are a smart cookie and don't need to hide behind your hair or an accessory. Look at Tyra! She is a supermodel, after all.
Just because people with larger foreheads are considered intelligent doesn't mean those with smaller foreheads are dummies. People with narrow foreheads like Sarah Hyland like their alone time and aren't always trying to be the center of attention.
Though they are introverted and rational beings, they tend to be much more emotional than others. People with narrow foreheads are gentle and very loving. They form strong bonds with others and like long-lasting relationships.
Back To The 1998 Study
Remember when I said I was done with the science for today? Well, I lied. Do you recall the 1998 study that said increased testosterone exposure in utero could impact future adult health and behavior?
Well, there have been additional studies that have delved further into this topic, and they're shedding light on the apparent connection and importance between finger length and our personalities.