Jones BC, DeBruine LM, Little AC, Conway CA, Welling LLM & Smith FG (2007). Sensation seeking and men's face preferences. Evolution and Human Behavior, 28(6): 439-446. doi: 10.1016/j.evolhumbehav.2007.07.006

Findings from previous studies suggest that only men who are in good physical condition can afford to pursue high-risk activities and that men who engage in risky activities are considered particularly attractive by women. Here we show that men’s interest in high sensation activities, a personality trait that is known to increase the likelihood of those individuals engaging in risky behaviors, is positively related to the strength of their preferences for femininity in women’s faces (Studies 1- 3) but is not related to the strength of their preferences for femininity in male faces (Study 2). We discuss these findings as evidence for potentially adaptive, condition-dependent mate preferences, whereby high quality men demonstrate particularly strong preferences for facial cues of reproductive and medical health in potential mates because they are more likely than lower quality men to succeed in acquiring such partners.

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