Forget candlelight dinners and romantic walks on the beach, for a tilt of the head is enough to lure a mate, according to new study. The research found that by simply tilting their face forward, a woman's face can be judged to be more feminine and more attractive, whereas a man's face is considered more attractive when tilted backwards.
Dr Darren Burke and Dr Danielle Sulikowski are the husband and wife team behind the research, which has been conducted at the University of Newcastle and Macquarie University. According to Dr Burke, while a lot is known already on the influence of feminine and masculine features on attractiveness, there is a gap in the evolutionary origin of what is considered masculine and feminine about facial features.
"Our research investigated if looking at the face from different perspectives as a result of the height differential between men and women influenced perceived masculinity or femininity," the Age quoted him as saying. "The research found the way we angle our faces affects our attractiveness to the opposite sex," he added.
Typically taller than women, men view women's faces from above so a female face was deemed more attractive when tilted forward, simulating this perspective. The opposite was then true for men whose faces were judged more masculine and attractive when tilted backwards as though they were viewed from below. Dr Sulikowski said these findings offer some clues to help unravel "the mysteries of mateship rituals" in this century.
"The next step is to determine if people use this effect in real-world mate-attraction scenarios," she said. The findings are published in the latest edition of Evolutionary Psychology.