Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Does He Love You So? Maybe It Really Is In His Face

Date:
January 30, 2007
Source:
University Of Michigan
Summary:
Can you judge a man's faithfulness by his face? How about whether he would be a good father, or a good provider? Many people believe they can, according to a University of Michigan study.

U-M social psychologist Daniel J. Kruger conducted a series of on-line experiments showing 854 male and female undergraduate students versions of composite male faces that had been altered to look more or less masculine by adjusting, for example, the shape of the jaw, the strength of brow ridges and the thickness of lips.
Credit: Image courtesy of University Of Michigan

Can you judge a man's faithfulness by his face? How about whether he would be a good father, or a good provider?

Related Articles


Many people believe they can, according to a University of Michigan study published in the December issue of Personal Relationships, a peer-reviewed academic journal.

U-M social psychologist Daniel J. Kruger conducted a series of on-line experiments showing 854 male and female undergraduate students versions of composite male faces that had been altered to look more or less masculine by adjusting, for example, the shape of the jaw, the strength of brow ridges and the thickness of lips.

Participants were asked which of the men they preferred as mates, dates, parents of their children, or companions for their girlfriends. They were also asked which men were most likely to behave in certain ways--starting a fight or hitting on someone else's girlfriend, for example.

"It's remarkable that minor physiological differences lead people to pre-judge a man's personality and behavior," said Kruger, a research scientist at the U-M School of Public Health and the U-M Institute for Social Research (ISR). "But even though physiognomy (the attribution of personality to faces) is thought to be a pseudoscience, a lot of people believe there's a link between looks and personality."

In terms of evolutionary psychology, there may be a kernel of truth in that belief, Kruger said. Facial masculinity is related to levels of testosterone during development, and testosterone levels are related to rates of infidelity, violence and divorce. "Facial masculinity may serve as a visual cue in female mate choice, much as the tail of the male peacock signals females about male fitness to reproduce."

In one study, participants linked more masculinized faces with riskier and more competitive behaviors, higher mating effort and lower parenting effort in comparison with less masculine faces.

Men with highly masculine faces were judged more likely to get into physical fights, challenge their bosses, sleep with many women, cheat on their partners and knowingly hit on someone else's girlfriend. Those with more feminine faces were judged to be more likely to be good husbands, be great with children, work hard at their jobs even though they didn't like them, and be emotionally supportive in long-term relationships.

"Men picked the less masculine-looking men to accompany their girlfriends on a weekend trip to another city," Kruger said, "and both men and women would prefer the less masculine versions as dating partners for their daughters."

Together, the studies show that highly masculine faces are associated with riskier and more competitive behavior, higher mating effort and lower parenting effort in comparison with less masculine faces.

"Both men and women generally respond to men with high and low facial masculinity in ways that could be expected to benefit their own reproductive success," Kruger said. "While the more masculine-looking men may be good bets for mating, the more feminine-looking men may be better bets as parenting partners. More feminine features suggest compassion and kindness, indicating that men are able and willing to invest in a long-term relationship and in any potential children."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University Of Michigan. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

University Of Michigan. "Does He Love You So? Maybe It Really Is In His Face." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 30 January 2007. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/01/070129221426.htm>.
University Of Michigan. (2007, January 30). Does He Love You So? Maybe It Really Is In His Face. ScienceDaily. Retrieved March 30, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/01/070129221426.htm
University Of Michigan. "Does He Love You So? Maybe It Really Is In His Face." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/01/070129221426.htm (accessed March 30, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Mind & Brain News

Monday, March 30, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

AAA: Distracted Driving a Serious Teen Problem

AAA: Distracted Driving a Serious Teen Problem

AP (Mar. 25, 2015) While distracted driving is not a new problem for teens, new research from the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety says it&apos;s much more serious than previously thought. (March 25) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Smartphone Use Changing Our Brain and Thumb Interaction, Say Researchers

Smartphone Use Changing Our Brain and Thumb Interaction, Say Researchers

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Mar. 25, 2015) European researchers say our smartphone use offers scientists an ideal testing ground for human brain plasticity. Dr Ako Ghosh&apos;s team discovered that the brains and thumbs of smartphone users interact differently from those who use old-fashioned handsets. Jim Drury went to meet him. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Many Don't Know They Have Alzheimer's, But Their Doctors Do

Many Don't Know They Have Alzheimer's, But Their Doctors Do

Newsy (Mar. 24, 2015) According to a new study by the Alzheimer&apos;s Association, more than half of those who have the degenerative brain disease aren&apos;t told by their doctors. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
A Quick 45-Minute Nap Can Improve Your Memory

A Quick 45-Minute Nap Can Improve Your Memory

Newsy (Mar. 23, 2015) Researchers found those who napped for 45 minutes to an hour before being tested on information recalled it five times better than those who didn&apos;t. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins