Why Do Men Have Nipples?

Humanity is plagued with a never-ending list of unanswered questions. Like, if a tree falls in the forest but no one is around to hear it, does it make a sound? Are we alone in the Universe, or do we share it with extra-terrestrial life forms? Did Leonardo DiCaprio deserve an Academy Award for his performance in The Revenant, or should the bear have gotten more credit?

Today at Healthversed, we aim to disseminate (quite possibly) the most important question of them all. Not the existence of God (though we may touch on it), or the even meaning of life. No, today we’ll attack the troubled existence of the male nipple and all of the controversy that goes along with it. Pay attention, take some notes, and most importantly, try to keep an open mind.

Science, Bro.

To begin to understand the question of the male nipple, we must start at, well… the beginning: Conception. You see, when a man loves a woman very, very much, they…

…wait, I should probably fast forward just a little bit. We all know that the sex of a baby is determined by the distribution of X and Y chromosomes. But before the sex of the baby is established, the embryos develop in the exact same way. So, technically, both male and female babies develop the mammary glands before they ever resemble men or women. Time passes and female nipples develop in to their final, biological form. And male nipples just… don’t go away.

Shestakov Dmytro / Shutterstock.com
Shestakov Dmytro / Shutterstock.com

No Nippled Male Mice

Are you sitting down? OK, good. Because what I am about to tell you might blow your mind.

There are a few strange, strange people that believe mice are more biologically advanced than humans. Why? Because their males have evolution-ed their way to a life sans-nipple.

It’s true! At some point during their long, storied history, male mice have found a way to one-up us human males on the evolution front (it has to do with a rush of testosterone in the early embryonic stages). Other male mammary-less mammals include Horses and Platypuses.

Geoffrey Lawrence / Shutterstock.com
Geoffrey Lawrence / Shutterstock.com

Third Nipples

Because, sometimes two isn’t enough. Yes… people with third nipples actually exist. And they are way more common than you’d think. Third nipples, or Supernumerary Nipples, are often mistaken for a mole or a birth mark, and can be found on as many as 1/3rd of the human population! Including some noteworthy celebs like Mark Wahlberg, Harry Styles and, of course, Chandler.

Sex

Alright, it’s time to start tackling the why. Why do men actually have nipples? What are their purpose?

You see… when a man and a woman love each other very, very much… Look, nipples are incredibly sensitive! And are often the subject of a lover’s attention! No, I’m not going to spell it out for you and no, I’m not going to add a hyperlink either. I’ll leave that up to you. But, realistically, if we’re searching for meaning, look no further than the bedroom. I mean, it’s not as if you can draw any grand, philosophical conclusions from the existence of the male nipple… or can you?

Stefano Cavoretto / Shutterstock.com
Stefano Cavoretto / Shutterstock.com

Exhibit “A” in the Case Against the Existence of a Higher Being

Yeah… some people actually believe that the existence of the male nipple dis-proves the existence of God. Trust me… my eyes rolled at this one too. But here’s how the theory goes:

It all begins with the Old Testament’s Genesis story. You know, the one with Adam and Eve? God created the animals, and then Adam, and then Eve. So, in theory, if Adam was created before Eve, he shouldn’t have been created with nipples. Because nipples would only have been invented during the creation of Eve.

Sigh. Some people have way too much time on their hands.

jorisvo / Shutterstock.com
jorisvo / Shutterstock.com

Equality

The male nipple isn’t without its fair share of controversy. Currently, there’s a war raging over Instagram’s decision to censor the female nipple. But this isn’t the first time that the Male vs. Female nipple debate has made headlines.

Not too long ago, all nipples were banned in public. Yes, prior to the 1930s, men were also prohibited from revealing their chests in public. A string of protests was followed by a string of arrests was followed by a ruling in 1936 to allow men to legally sunbathe shirtless in New York State for the first time in history. And, because society doesn’t really make a whole lot of sense, women are still pretty much banned from doing exactly the same thing in most places around the world.

Marcio Jose Bastos Silva / Shutterstock.com
Marcio Jose Bastos Silva / Shutterstock.com

Aesthetics

So we’ve covered the how, we’ve covered the when, and we’ve even mixed in some weird, un-categorized info along the way. But, when it all comes down to it, it’s hard to deny that, well, men just look better with nipples.

Think about it. We live in the age of manscaping, bodybuilding and selfies. All of which, in my humble opinion, are enhanced by the sheer existence of the male nipple. Just thinking about an army of nipple-less male chests seems alien. But, on second thought, a world without nipples means a world without purple-nurples. *Imagines what high school would have been like without the endless barrage of purple nurples.* Yeah, I’ve made up my mind.

I T A L O / Shutterstock.com
I T A L O / Shutterstock.com