Scientists in Singapore are hard at work measuring how facial shape impacts our relationships, because apparently that’s a thing. Previous studies have show than men with wide faces have higher testosterone, which makes them attractive to women on an evolutionary level, and the scientists wanted to investigate how this influenced women’s view of men as potential relationship partners.
They conducted a study by setting up a series of speed-dating events, where men (of varying facial widths, we assume) rotated through a room of single women, spending three minutes with each. After each date, the women noted whether they would want to go on a second date with that person, and “how interested they were on a scale of one to five in a potential short-term relationship, long-term relationship or friendship.” A separate group viewed pictures of the men’s faces and rated them on perceived dominance and aggression.
The study concluded that men with wider faces are seen as more dominant and more aggressive, and also that women were more interested in having short-term relationships with them than long-term. The researchers suggested that “it makes adaptive sense for women to extract genetic qualities from such men through short-term relationships, rather than entering long-term relationships, where aggression and defection costs are more relevant.” Basically, women want to get those strong manly genes from a wide-faced, testosterone-filled dude, then kick him to the curb before those “dominant” traits reveal that he’s actually aggressive and selfish, as another study showed wide-faced men tend to be.
Hopefully devious celebrities will start using this as a dating template, so that someday the world can be blessed with a child who has Brad Pitt’s broad cheekbones and Ryan Gosling’s gentle nature. Truly the best of both worlds.
Image via Palloc