Facial attractiveness, symmetry, and physical fitness in young women.

Honekopp, Johannes, Bartholomé, Tobias and Jansen, Gregor (2004) Facial attractiveness, symmetry, and physical fitness in young women. Human Nature, 15 (2). pp. 147-167. ISSN 1045-6767

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Official URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s12110-004-1018-4


This study explores the evolutionary-based hypothesis that facial attractiveness (a guiding force in mate selection) is a cue for physical fitness (presumably an important contributor to mate value in ancestral times). Since fluctuating asymmetry, a measure of developmental stability, is known to be a valid cue for fitness in several biological domains, we scrutinized facial asymmetry as a potential mediator between attractiveness and fitness. In our sample of young women, facial beauty indeed indicated physical fitness. The relationships that pertained to asymmetry were in the expected direction. However, a closer analysis revealed that facial asymmetry did not mediate the relationship between fitness and attractiveness. Unexpected problems regarding the measurement of facial asymmetry are discussed.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: physical fitness, facial asymmetry, psychology
Subjects: C800 Psychology
Department: Faculties > Health and Life Sciences > Psychology
Depositing User: EPrint Services
Date Deposited: 07 May 2010 13:08
Last Modified: 12 Oct 2019 16:27
URI: http://nrl.northumbria.ac.uk/id/eprint/2007

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