What is cute – scientifically? This video by YouTube user Vsauce answers this question wonderfully. For example, did you know that looking at cute pictures activates the same part of the brain as using cocaine or meth?
Cuteness is usually characterized by a small body size with a disproportionately large head, large eyes, small nose, and round and softer body features. Infantile personality traits, such as playfulness, curiosity, innocence, affectionate behavior, and a need to be nurtured are also generally considered cute.
In 1945, Konrad Lorenz argued that infantile features triggered nurturing responses in adults and that this was an evolutionary adaptation which helped ensure adults cared for their children. Lorenz noted that humans react more positively to animals that resemble infants than to animals that do not.
Emily Howard was a faithful EarthSkyer for many years, until 2013. She graduated with honors from the University of Texas with a major in History (focus on Latin American Studies) and a minor in Spanish. She further cultivated her Spanish skills while living abroad in Valparaíso, Chile, and traveling extensively throughout South America, Mexico and Spain. She's an all-around cool girl, with an interest in many things.