The muscular male: a comparison of the physical attractiveness preferences of gay and heterosexual men

Swami, V. and Tovee, Martin J. (2008) The muscular male: a comparison of the physical attractiveness preferences of gay and heterosexual men. International Journal of Men's Health, 7 (1). pp. 59-71. ISSN 1532-6306

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Abstract

This study examined the association between sexual orientation and the perception of men's physical attractiveness. Twenty-seven heterosexual men and 23 gay men were asked to rate, according to physical attractiveness, a series of images of real men with known body mass index (BMI) and waist-to-chest ratio (WCR). The results showed that the WCR was the primary component of attractiveness ratings for both heterosexual and gay men. However, gay men showed a stronger preference for lower WCRs, indicating a preference for a more developed upper-body build. There were small differences in terms of preference for overall body weight, with both groups preferring an image with a BMI of about 21kg/m2. The findings are discussed in terms of gay culture, which emphasises the importance of muscularity in physical attraction.

Keywords:physical attractiveness, heterosexual, gay, body mass index (BMI), waist-to-chest ratio
Subjects:C Biological Sciences > C800 Psychology
C Biological Sciences > C850 Cognitive Psychology
C Biological Sciences > C880 Social Psychology
C Biological Sciences > C841 Health Psychology
C Biological Sciences > C840 Clinical Psychology
Divisions:College of Social Science > School of Psychology
ID Code:24439
Deposited On:12 Jul 2017 15:26

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