The Mathematical analysis of the aesthetically pleasing eyelid

Emma C. McDonnell, Sagar Y. Patel, Stacy M. Scofield-Kaplan, Alexandria Chaulk, Jeffrey Stetler, Victoria Starks, Ronald Mancini

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Purpose: To analyze and quantify the characteristics and parameters of the eyelid and adnexa of males and females and correlate these findings to an aesthetically pleasing score. Methods: This is an Institutional Review Board approved study involving healthy male and female volunteers. The marginto-reflex distance, palpebral fissure, inferior scleral show, tarsal platform show, and brow fat span were measured using Image J digital photographic analysis and the images were scored by 110 non-ophthalmologists. The eyelid parameters were compared between the groups with Student t tests and the total aesthetic score was correlated to the measured parameters with Pearson's correlation coefficients (r). This study was HIPAA-compliant with protection of individually identifiable information. Results: Twenty male and 22 female participants were included and divided into 2 groups based on the aesthetic score. The average aesthetic score was 3.06 for males and 3.36 for females. None of the eyelid parameters were found to be significantly significant between the 2 male groups. In females, both inferior scleral show and tarsal platform show were significantly lower in the more aesthetic group. A greater margin-to-reflex distance correlated with increased aesthetic appeal. The ratio of brow fat span/tarsal platform show was not significantly different between the 2 female groups. Conclusions: Quantifying goals are important for the surgical and nonsurgical management of the eyelid and periorbita. Beauty is considered to be subjective and is comprised of various criteria. However, this study reveals that the female sex may have certain quantifiable goals for eyelid parameters that are considered more aesthetically pleasing.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)182-184
Number of pages3
JournalOphthalmic plastic and reconstructive surgery
StateAccepted/In press - 2020
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Ophthalmology


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