Female and male perceptions of female physical attractiveness in front-view and profile

Tovee, M. J. and Cornelissen, P. L. (2001) Female and male perceptions of female physical attractiveness in front-view and profile. British Journal of Psychology, 92 (2). pp. 391-402. ISSN 0007-1269


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Two important cues to female physical attractiveness are body mass index (BMI) and shape. In front view, it seems that BMI may be more important than shape; however, is it true in profile where shape cues may be stronger? There is also the question of whether men and women have the same perception of female physical attractiveness. Some studies have suggested that they do not, but this runs contrary to mate selection theory. This predicts that women will have the same perception of female attractiveness as men do. This allows them to judge their own relative value, with respect to their peer group, and match this value with the value of a prospective mate. To clarify these issues we asked 40 male and 40 female undergraduates to rate a set of pictures of real women (50 in front-view and 50 in profile) for attractiveness. BMI was the primary predictor of attractiveness in both front and profile, and the putative visual cues to BMI showed a higher degree of view-invariance than shape cues such as the waist-hip ratio (WHR). Consistent with mate selection theory, there were no significant differences in the rating of attractiveness by male and female raters.

Keywords:attractiveness, body mass index, BMI, waist Hip Ratio, WHR, viewing angle, viewpoint, view invariance
Subjects:C Biological Sciences > C800 Psychology
C Biological Sciences > C850 Cognitive Psychology
C Biological Sciences > C830 Experimental Psychology
C Biological Sciences > C841 Health Psychology
C Biological Sciences > C840 Clinical Psychology
Divisions:College of Social Science > School of Psychology
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ID Code:28274
Deposited On:24 Aug 2017 14:12

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