Science Proves 5-Year-Olds Aren't Cute

cute toddlerI knew my daughter's time was running out. She's a challenging 3-year-old in so many ways, but she often gets away with her naughty behavior because she's do damn cute. I think that's the way it is with a lot of young children, which is a vicious cycle of sorts that feeds the terribleness of toddlers, no matter how hard we try to stop it. It's just hard to get too mad at those squishy little cheeks, innocent eyes, and squeaky little voices.

Even when they misbehave in public and parents endure the searing tsk tsk-ing of strangers, the general, overriding reaction is still, awww, aren't they adorable? Because, let's face it, they are. But that's not going to save them forever. Eventually the cuteness comes to an end, and now scientists are telling us exactly when.

In a study highlighted recently by Bonnie Rochman at Time, scientists found that based on changes in their facial features, kids stop being cute at age 4.5.

They say it may be evolutionary in some regards. That the way babies' faces are aligned makes people feel all soft and cuddly toward them -- even if they're not their own -- thereby giving toddlers some level of protection from society (i.e. (normal) people don't want to drop kick them even if they are brats.). As Jenna Pincott pointed out in Psychology Today:

Children's faces lose some of their universal babyish appeal right around the age that they don't need it anymore (to survive) -- early childhood.

It's an interesting, though not surprising finding. That's just about the age that I've always found kids to start being annoying. When my son was young, all of his playmates were just adorable and sweet, but as they grew older, they started growing little personalities -- some of which didn't make me feel warm and cuddly at all. Some of which make me want to turn the lights off and pretend we aren't home when they ring the doorbell. Here I thought I was just growing irritable, when it's their little faces that are making me feel this way.

But it's for their own good (and the sanity of their parents) that cuteness comes to a halt, because without that pass, they have to start taking more accountability for their actions or risk the wrath of society. Seeing a 3-year-old throw themselves on the floor because mommy can't make the sun come out (true story, last week) is met witha slightly more tolerable reaction than a 5-year-old doing so. Since kids don't have cuteness to save them anymore, most of them (hopefully) will stop with tantrums and other over-the-top bratty behavior as they age. Or at least that's the evolutionary theory on which I'm counting.

Do you think your kids became less cute as they exited toddlerhood?


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the4m... the4mutts

Nope. Their personalities have made them cuter to me.

And I can dislike a baby, just as easilly as a shit headded teen. I'm not fond of other people's kids, on average. When I do like them, I like them no matter their age or cuteness level.

My SO has 3 nephews & 1 niece, ages 6-18. They're all kind of ugly, to be perfectly honest. The 18yr old will prolly have to pay someone to marry him, okay?

I love them all, as if they were my own. Even when they're shits, and even tho they're ugly

paren... parentalrights1

I still have a toddler, but generally I find any kid between 4 and teens to be utterly fucking annoying and weird behavior (Can't stand when 5 and 6 year olds talk in a weird a voice and start dancing weird ass dances at odd moments)

I have a weird animosity to kids, but of course wouldn't mistreat them lol. Then they become teens and I just want to punch them in the face.

kjbug... kjbugsmom1517

I too dont really like kids over the age of about 4. My almost 4 year old is currently driving me crazy. And my almost 7 year old.... well yea.... im screwed lol.

jzsco... jzscolese

For other people kids, its dead on!!! No, your kids don't ever become "not cute" but they do lose their baby characters and the sweetness they had flies out the window. And they can't get away with things. Other people kids become not cute. . . or just brats.

Venae Venae

I'm sorry, but a 6-7 year old w/two missing front teeth is ADORABLE!


TugBo... TugBoatMama

My middle child just turned 5 and let me tell you his temper is no longer cute. It was tough not letting him get away with murder as a toddler because he was so damn adorable in my eyes and now I pay the piper for it. My soon to be 8 year old is discovering the art of giving attitude and that is uncharted territory for me because he was my firstborn thus being my experiment child.

babyb... babybirch

I think babies are cute, but I think kids are the cutest - up until they near middle school. I don't like middle school children, for the most part.

mamav... mamavaness

Yeah they stop being cute... I hate when they are like 5 or 6 & just want to know everything.... its like I don't have all the answers..go ask your parents.

nonmember avatar finnja

...a 3-year-old throw(ing) themselves on the floor because mommy can't make the sun come out ... I know what you are talking about LOL! Mine is 15 months, and I am glad to hear he will shed his cuteness at some point. 'Cause as it is now, I feel so horrible and incompetent, when I cannot make all he wishes of my adorable toddler come true - like making the soccer ball fit into his favorite tiny-teeny toy-box... haha.

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