A large literature suggests that men and women differ in their self-reported mate preferences such that men place greater weight on physical attractiveness than women do, whereas women value financial prospects more than men. Yet, little research has addressed how these differences generalize to other contexts, such as modern online dating in which mate selection may largely depend on visual cues. Distinct from the sex differences observed in previous studies relying on self-reports, we found that men and women both used perceptions of health and attractiveness to select hypothetical partners based on photographs of their faces. Importantly, although people reliably identified others’ wealth from their photographs, these perceptions did not influence men’s or women’s partner selections. Thus, men and women may select romantic partners similarly based on limited visual information.
Archives of Sexual Behavior – Springer Journals
Published: Mar 2, 2017
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