How long will your relationship last? Have you ever thought about it? Do you even know what goes into making a relationship last? Is it yours and your partner’s looks, or your commitment to make it work? Or putting in blood, sweat, and tears to nurture it? Or is women’s facial features?
A really interesting study says that men prefer women with feminine features for short-term relationships, and it also answers why some women don’t get married at all.
The study, which was published in the British Journal of Psychology, was conducted by Anthony Little from the University of Stirling and Benedict Jones from the University of Glasgow.
Image source: Giphy
‘Feminine’ features, according to previous studies, include a smaller nose and jawbone, a larger pair of eyes, and fuller lips and cheeks, which are linked to women’s perceived attractiveness. Not just that, but these feminine features also indicate health, youth, fidelity, and other such important traits in women. These past studies have also indicated that feminine features equated to higher level of the female hormone estrogen, which is necessary for successful reproduction.
The scientists in this study wanted to see if men’s preference of partner for long-term or short-term relationships would be affected by women’s facial features. The study had 393 heterosexual men, 207 of whom stated that they had current partners. The participants were then asked to go through 10 paired images of women. In each of these pairs of composite images, one of them had been further transformed to possess masculine traits, while the rest had feminine traits.
Among the images given, the participants were asked to rate which of the pair of composite images they found most attractive, indicating the most attractive for short-term and long-term relationships. The study revealed that men were more likely to find women with feminine features the most attractive when they were looking for something short-term, and this was especially true for those men already in relationships.
In a news release, Anthony Little from the University of Stirling said,
“There are several possible explanations; perhaps some men are inclined to take a long-term partner whilst still attempting to cheat with other, more feminine, women. Or maybe once a long-term partner is secured, the potential cost of being discovered may increase a man’s choosiness regarding short-term partners relative to unpartnered men.”
In the study, researchers wrote that when it comes to making a choice for a long-term relationship, men ‘may actually prefer less attractive/feminine women.’
Further, he added,
“It’s interesting that these findings are comparable to previous research that indicates women’s preference for masculine male faces are higher if they were judging for short-term relationships. Our findings point to a similar preference in men. When they already have a partner, men find more feminine women more attractive for short-term relationships.”
Another interesting finding from this study is that men who think they themselves are attractive, have stronger preferences for femininity than those who think of themselves as less attractive. Researchers opined that this effect is similar to what is seen in women. They explained that women who are attractive are pickier in their preferences for men.
So how long will your relationship last, do you think? Is your wife/girlfriend have feminine features? Or slightly masculine features? Do you agree with this study? Sound off in the comments below.
Featured image source: Google, copyright-free image under Creative Commons License