AUSTIN, Texas, Sept. 21 (UPI) — Men looking for sex are more interested in a woman’s body but those looking for a long-term relationship look for a pretty face, U.S. researchers found.
Psychology graduate student Jaime Confer — who co-authored the research with graduate student Carin Perilloux and Professor David Buss, all of the University of Texas at Austin — say a woman’s body generally provides cues about her state of fertility, but her face gives insight into her long-term reproductive value.
“Men’s priorities shift depending on what they want in a mate, with facial features taking on more importance when a long-term relationship is the goal,” the study authors say in a statement. “Mating is central to the engine of natural selection. This research helps clarify people’s preference.”
The study involved 375 college students who were shown an image of another person whose face and body were hidden — described as a potential short-term or long-term mate. The participants had the option of looking at either head or body, but not both.
The study, published in the journal Evolution and Human Behavior, found 25 percent of men told to consider the mate as a long-term partner looked at their potential partner’s body, but 51 percent told to consider her as a short-term partner chose to look her body.
Women showed no preference for faces or bodies when looking for short-term or long-term mates, the study says.
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