• Question: Why do we need eyebrows

    Asked by charlottepardoe to Hannah, Ian, Jono, Mark on 26 Jun 2013.
    • Photo: Hannah Brotherton

      Hannah Brotherton answered on 26 Jun 2013:

      Hi charlottepardoe,
      So eyebrows allow us to socialize and communicate with each other 😛 without them, it would be really hard to tell if we were happy or sad, or angry.

      But we have language now, and that tells people a lot how we feel…so why do we still have our eyebrows

      They keep moisture out of our eyes when we sweat or walk around in the rain. The arch shape makes the rain go around the sides of our face keeping our eyes dry. They also let us see clearly when we’re sweating a lot or out in the rain. Without eyebrows, we wouldn’t be able to see well when it rains. Also sweat has salt in it, and if this got in our eyes, it would be really painful.

      So our eyebrow are like little umbrellas for our eyes 😀

    • Photo: Ian Wilson

      Ian Wilson answered on 26 Jun 2013:

      Hi Charlotte,

      We have eyebrows for a couple of reasons.

      The first is to help express emotions and improve our social abilities. For example, if we’re surprised, we raise our eyebrows. So if you had no eyebrows, you wouldn’t be able to look surprised. This would make you kinda difficult to talk to so you might not be accepted in social groups as easily as if you had eyebrows. If you’re not socialising as well, you’re less likely to find a mate to have children with. So, I guess eyebrows make us kinda…well, sexy, as weird as it sounds!

      The second reason for us having eyebrows is to keep sweat and rain out of our eyes. This would have been helpful when our ancestors were hunting as those with eyebrows would be more likely to be able to see clearly in hot or rainy weather than those without.

      Hope that helps 😀


    • Photo: Jono Bone

      Jono Bone answered on 27 Jun 2013:

      Hi Charlotte,

      Eyebrows are also one of our most expressive facial features. One of the clearest ways to tell somebody what you’re thinking is to simply move your eyebrows up or down. As social animals this is very important. The arch shape diverts the rain or sweat around to the sides of our face, keeping our eyes relatively dry. I can imagine in our evolutionary history this would have given us a great advantage when hunting in the heat of Africa.