People with shorter and wider faces have a higher sex drive, new research finds.
Men with wider, shorter faces are also more likely to report intending to cheat on their partner.
For the research, almost 500 people were asked about their sexual orientation, their relationships and whether they would consider being unfaithful to their partner.
It is the latest in a line of studies that have linked face shape to various psychological characteristics.
Men with square, wide faces are seen as more attractive as short-term partners, as well as more dominant, the research has shown.
The study’s authors write:
“…they are also perceived by naïve observers as being more socially dominant, untrustworthy, and aggressive compared to men with lower width-to-height ratios.”
The square, wide face has also been linked to financial success, prejudice, unethical behaviour and even psychopathic tendencies.
So, it is a fairly confusing cocktail of positive and negative characteristics (depending on your preferences, of course).
The theory is that it comes down to the hormones men are exposed to during development:
“Researchers have argued that the observed links between the FWHR and men’s dominant and aggressive attitudes and behavior may be a product of androgen exposure during critical periods of development.
In support of this, sex differences in facial structure arise with the onset of puberty, ostensibly reflecting increased testosterone in males relative to females.”
Hormonal exposure during development also seems to affects women’s sex drive.
Like men, women with shorter, wider faces had a higher sex drive, this study found, although they expressed no greater intention to cheat on their partner.
About the author
Psychologist, Jeremy Dean, PhD is the founder and author of PsyBlog. He holds a doctorate in psychology from University College London and two other advanced degrees in psychology.
He has been writing about scientific research on PsyBlog since 2004. He is also the author of the book “Making Habits, Breaking Habits” (Da Capo, 2003) and several ebooks:
- Accept Yourself: How to feel a profound sense of warmth and self-compassion
- The Anxiety Plan: 42 Strategies For Worry, Phobias, OCD and Panic
- Spark: 17 Steps That Will Boost Your Motivation For Anything
- Activate: How To Find Joy Again By Changing What You Do
The study was published in the journal Archives of Sexual Behavior (Arnocky et al., 2017).