Little A, Burriss R, Jones BC, DeBruine LM & Caldwell CA (2008) Social influence in human face preference: men and women are influenced more for long-term than short-term attractiveness decisions. Evolution and Human Behavior, 29 (2), pp. 140-146. http://www.ehbonline.org/home; https://doi.org/10.1016/j.evolhumbehav.2007.11.007
In non-human animals mate-choice copying has received much attention, with studies demonstrating that females tend to copy the choices of other females for specific males. Here we show, for both men and women, that pairing with an attractive partner increases the attractiveness of opposite-sex faces for long-term relationship decisions but not short-term decisions. Our study therefore shows social transmission of face preference in humans, which may have important consequences for the evolution of human traits. Our study also highlights the flexibility of human mate choice and suggests that, for humans, learning about non-physical traits that are important to pair-bonding drives copying-like behaviour.
Faces; Copying; Term; Attractiveness; Face Anatomy; Sex differences (Psychology); Sexual attraction; Mate selection
Evolution and Human Behavior: Volume 29, Issue 2