beer gogglesAnyone who’s experienced closing time at the local pub knows that beauty is in the eye of the beer-holder, i.e. the dreaded beer goggles phenomenon.

Turns out there is some actual science behind beer goggles. Researchers at St. Andrew University and Glasgow University reported in 2002 that the nucleus accumbens — a collection of neurons in the brain that influence reward, laughter, pleasure, addiction and fear — is stimulated when humans look at an attractive human being.

Alcohol, in addition to impairing judgement, also stimulates the nucleus accumbens. And here’s a shocker — the more you drink, the more stimulated the nucleus accumbens becomes. Before you know it you’re in a coyote ugly situation.

Fair warning ladies, beer goggles are a potentially perilous predictiment for you. Researchers at Lakehead University in Canada report that beer goggles last longer for women than men. While male beer goggles evaporate as quickly as the alcohol, the effects lingered even after the female test subjects sobered up.

There’s even a formula to determine the beer goggles effect on each individual. In 2005, scientists at Manchester University created a formula that not takes into account the amount of alcohol, but also the amount of light in the room, the observer’s eye-sight quality, the amount of smoke in the air and the distance between the observer to the observee.

The mayor of Mount Isa in Queensland, Australia hopes to put beer goggles to good use. Mount Isa is a remote mining town known as the beer goggles capital of the world. Men out number women 5 to 1, which prompted Mayor Cr Molony to tell, “May I suggest if there are five blokes to every girl, we should find out where there are beauty-disadvantaged women and ask them to proceed to Mount Isa,”

No word if the mayor plans to use tax dollars to purchase beer goggles as part of his proposed stimulus package.