Title

Unrestricted Sociosexuality Predicts Preferences for Extraverted Male Faces

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

4-1-2017

Department

Psychology

Abstract

Human facial structures communicate health, thus indicating one's suitability as a potential mating partner. However, facial structures also communicate information about one's personality, which allows for inferences about a target's behavioral intentions. A target's relative level of extraversion can be reliably inferred from facial structural features. Because past research has found an association between extraversion and greater interest in short-term mating, particularly for men, we hypothesized that women with an unrestricted sociosexual orientation, which is geared toward short-term mating, would demonstrate heightened preferences for extraverted faces, particularly male faces. Participants viewed face pairs of various individuals manipulated to be highly extraverted versus highly introverted while indicating their preferences among the pairs; participants also completed the Sociosexual Orientation Inventory-Revised. Independent of sociosexuality, participants preferred extraversion (relative to introversion) in female faces; conversely, participants demonstrated a stronger preference for introverted male faces. However, more sociosexually unrestricted women and men exhibited a greater preference for extraverted male faces. Whereas unrestricted women's preferences may be related to identifying mating opportunities, men's preferences for extraverted male faces may reflect an enhanced sensitivity to detecting same-sex individuals who would represent a heightened intrasexually competitive threat.

Publication Title

Personality and Individual Differences

Volume

108

First Page

123

Last Page

127

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