The internet is a great place for brains to come together and solve unanswered mysteries, whether it's the curious case of a dying grandmother's code or the hunting down of criminals evading the law. But now, the most powerful communication tool ever created is using its hive mind to decipher the theory that a lot of women have an identical "magic freckle".
The insight started with a number of different people tweeting the claim that a lot of women, perhaps the majority, have a freckle on the middle of their wrist. Although the statement was undoubtedly first posted as a light-hearted joke to get some easy retweets, it quickly proved to be a surprisingly accurate claim. One of the tweets making the claim has received over 9,000 replies with hundreds of women who do indeed have a small freckle slap bang in the middle of their wrist.
“I was like 'nah' but apparently I keep my wrist freckle under my watch,” one person replied.
“You should’ve seen my face when I looked down at my wrist and saw a freckle. I’m shook,” said another.
Granted, this is pretty strange observation, but is there a logical explanation for this phenomenon?
Freckles are tiny clusters of concentrated melanized cells in the basal area of the skin’s epidermis. They can become darker and more visible if exposed to sunlight because ultraviolet light (UV-B radiation) activates the pigment-producing melanocytes to pump out more melanin. That explains why your freckles might fade in the winter and darken in the summer.
This is merely speculation – unfortunately, freakishly freckled wrists are an unstudied field – but it’s fair to say that the parts of the body that are exposed most to ultraviolet radiation are the face, hands, and upper arms. So, it’s no surprise that these areas are generally more freckly than, say, your thighs, which are exposed to daylight much less regularly.
Furthermore, the wrist is extremely visible in your day-to-day life, even more so than your face. Chances are, if you’re reading this on a smartphone or laptop, your wrist will be in view. You probably know any scar, hair, blemish, spot, or freckle on your upper wrist like the back of your hand, quite literally.
There is also perhaps an element of confirmation bias. If you are a woman who has a freckle on your wrist, you might attach some significance to the claim that “most women have a freckle on their wrist” and go on to share the anecdote. However, if you don’t have a freckle there or you're a man, you’ll shrug off the claim and forget about it, meaning the other side of the story isn’t as loudly promoted.