From Valentine’s Day hype to shows like Love Island, ‘rom-coms’ and everyday social media, love is everywhere.
Not just love, but picture-perfect relationships and Instagram accounts full of stunningly beautiful couples gazing adoringly at each other.
If this makes you sometimes feel a bit inadequate in the attractiveness stakes, you’re not alone.
YouGov Omnibus research last year revealed that Brits tend to see themselves as average looking, with most of those who have a partner thinking that their partner is more attractive than they are.
But when it comes to relationships, should looks even matter?
The topic is up for discussion in the latest episode of Yahoo UK’s podcast Britain Is a Nation Of…, which looks at love and romance.
Listen to the full episode of Britain is a Nation of… below
The episode unpacks some of the YouGov Omnibus research about Brits’ views on their own and their partner’s physical attractiveness.
YouGov asked people to rate their own and their partner’s looks on a scale from 0-10, with 0 being “very unattractive”, 10 being “very attractive” and 5 being “average”.
According to the figures, many people feel they’re pretty average but have a far more complimentary view of their partner’s looks.
More than half (56%) of Brits who are in a relationship gave their loved one a higher score than themselves, effectively admitting that they think they’re punching above their weight.
A third (35%) believed their partner was the same level of attractiveness as them, while only 9% said they were dating someone less good looking than themselves.
Explaining why that may be, Dr Becky Spellman, psychologist and We-Vibe relationship expert, told the podcast most people tend to be more critical of themselves than of others.
“We do tend to nitpick at ourselves more than be critical towards others depending on our personalities,” she said.
“We’re often very self-critical but not as critical of others.
“It was interesting how it was asked because it wasn’t asked, ‘rate your partner, is your partner better looking than you?’. It was actually, ‘rate yourself, rate your partner’, so it was quite clever how it was done.”
But she said while that might appear important at the start of a relationship, it’s about far more than looks.
“It really comes down to personality,” she said.
“Of course I need to be attracted to someone because that very much helps with the sex side of things.
“But really it doesn’t matter, once you get to know that person they’re more than what you see in front of you.”
And let’s not forget, she reminds us, it’s often a case of perception.
“If you think that they’re more attractive than you they might think the same back. So it all comes down to perception.”