Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Reading the look of love

Date:
July 1, 2010
Source:
Association for Psychological Science
Summary:
How fast you can judge whether a person of the opposite sex is looking at you depends on how masculine or feminine they look, according to a new study. The researchers speculate that there may be an evolutionary advantage to quickly noticing when a 'hottie' is looking at you.

How fast you can judge whether a person of the opposite sex is looking at you depends on how masculine or feminine they look, according to a new study. The researchers speculate that there may be an evolutionary advantage to quickly noticing when a hottie is looking at you.

Psychologists have debated how we determine whether someone else is looking at us or not. One point of view is that "it's almost a geometric problem," says Benedict C. Jones, of the University of Aberdeen in Scotland – that people just look at the whites of the eyes and other features of the face, without being influenced by the face in general. But Jones and his colleagues, Julie Main, Lisa DeBruine, and Lisa Welling of the University of Aberdeen and Anthony Little of Stirling University, thought there was more to it. They designed an experiment to see whether how masculine or feminine the face was affected how quickly a viewer could assess its gaze.

Volunteers looked at faces with exaggerated or reduced male or female features; the faces had been morphed to look either more or less masculine or feminine. As the faces flashed on a computer screen, the volunteer was supposed to hit a key as quickly as possible to indicate whether the face was looking at them or away from them. Both women and men could do that more quickly when the face had exaggerated sexual characteristics. "Women were quickest to classify gaze direction when they were looking at hunky, masculine-looking guys. Guys were quicker when they were looking at pretty, feminine women," says Jones. The research is published in Psychological Science, a journal of the Association for Psychological Science.

Jones speculates that this ability to perceive things about attractive people faster may have been useful to early humans. Previous research shows that feminine women and masculine men make the healthiest mates. "There's likely to be quite a big advantage to detecting when a particularly good potential mate's looking at you," says Jones. "If I'm in a bar and there's a pretty woman looking at me – if I wasn't married – I would want to catch her eye before someone else did."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Association for Psychological Science. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Association for Psychological Science. "Reading the look of love." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 1 July 2010. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/06/100628124703.htm>.
Association for Psychological Science. (2010, July 1). Reading the look of love. ScienceDaily. Retrieved August 31, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/06/100628124703.htm
Association for Psychological Science. "Reading the look of love." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/06/100628124703.htm (accessed August 31, 2014).

Share This




More Mind & Brain News

Sunday, August 31, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Young Entrepreneurs Get $100,000, If They Quit School

Young Entrepreneurs Get $100,000, If They Quit School

AFP (Aug. 29, 2014) Twenty college-age students are getting 100,000 dollars from a Silicon Valley leader and a chance to live in San Francisco in order to work on the start-up project of their dreams, but they have to quit school first. Duration: 02:20 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Baby Babbling Might Lead To Faster Language Development

Baby Babbling Might Lead To Faster Language Development

Newsy (Aug. 29, 2014) A new study suggests babies develop language skills more quickly if their parents imitate the babies' sounds and expressions and talk to them often. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Electrical Stimulation Boosts Brain Function, Study Says

Electrical Stimulation Boosts Brain Function, Study Says

Newsy (Aug. 29, 2014) Researchers found an improvement in memory and learning function in subjects who received electric pulses to their brains. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Treadmill 'trips' May Reduce Falls for Elderly

Treadmill 'trips' May Reduce Falls for Elderly

AP (Aug. 28, 2014) Scientists are tripping the elderly on purpose in a Chicago lab in an effort to better prevent seniors from falling and injuring themselves in real life. (Aug.28) Video provided by AP
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:
from the past week

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