Human facial attributes, but not perceived intelligence, are used as cues of health and resource provision potential

Lee, Anthony J., Dubbs, Shelli L., Kelly, Ashleigh J., von Hippel, William, Brooks, Robert C. and Zietsch, Brendan P. (2013) Human facial attributes, but not perceived intelligence, are used as cues of health and resource provision potential. Behavioral Ecology, 24 3: 779-787. doi:10.1093/beheco/ars199


Author Lee, Anthony J.
Dubbs, Shelli L.
Kelly, Ashleigh J.
von Hippel, William
Brooks, Robert C.
Zietsch, Brendan P.
Title Human facial attributes, but not perceived intelligence, are used as cues of health and resource provision potential
Journal name Behavioral Ecology   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 1045-2249
1465-7279
Publication date 2013-05
Year available 2012
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1093/beheco/ars199
Volume 24
Issue 3
Start page 779
End page 787
Total pages 9
Place of publication Cary, NC, United States
Publisher Oxford University Press
Collection year 2014
Language eng
Abstract Avoiding disease and acquiring resources have been recurrent challenges throughout human evolution. These abilities are particularly relevant to mate preferences, as pathogens and resources can both be transferred between mates and to mutual offspring. Based on 689 participants' attractiveness ratings of manipulated online dating profiles, we tested whether pathogen and resource concerns predicted revealed mate preferences for facial attractiveness, facial sexual dimorphism, and perceived intelligence and also whether these different trait preferences were intercorrelated. Supporting our predictions, pathogen concerns positively predicted men and women's preferences for facial attractiveness and men's preference for facial femininity, whereas women's resource concerns negatively predicted their preference for facial masculinity. Unexpectedly, neither pathogen nor resource concerns predicted preference for greater perceived intelligence. Further, preference for perceived intelligence was negatively correlated with preference for facial attractiveness, which was positively correlated with preference for facial sexual dimorphism. These findings suggest that facial attributes are used in mate assessment as cues of health and likelihood of resource provisioning, whereas intelligence may primarily be used as a cue of other, distinct qualities.
Keyword Facial attractiveness
Multiple cues
Pathogen prevalence
Resource scarcity
Revealed preferences
Sexual dimorphism
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ
Additional Notes Available online: 23 November 2012.

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Official 2014 Collection
School of Psychology Publications
 
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