The effects of resource availability and relationship status on women's preference for masculinity: An eye-tracking study

Lyons, Minna and Marcinkowska, Ursula and Moisey, Victoria and Harrison, Neil (2016) The effects of resource availability and relationship status on women's preference for masculinity: An eye-tracking study. Personality and Individual Differences, 95. pp. 25-28. ISSN 0191-8869

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Previous research has demonstrated that perceived availability of environmental resources affects the mate choice of females. However, it is unclear whether women's partnership status influences the effects of environmental circumstances on masculinity preference. Further, the role of environmental scarcity on women's gaze patterns when evaluating male faces has not been investigated. The current study investigated how relationship status and environmental factors affected women's gaze patterns and preference towards masculinised and feminised male faces. Twenty-two participants in a long-term romantic relationship, and 26 who were single, were primed with either a high (‘wealthy’) or low (‘scarcity’) resource availability scenario. They then completed a facial masculinity/femininity preference task while eye-gaze behaviour was measured. Women in a relationship (but not single women) had an increased preference towards masculine faces in the scarcity condition, compared to the wealthy condition; this preference was also reflected in eye gaze behaviour. In contrast, single women had longer first fixations on feminine rather than masculine faces when evaluating them as long-term partners in the wealthy condition, but no overt preference for either face type. These findings reveal the importance of taking women's relationship status into account in investigations of the role of environmental influences on masculinity preferences.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information and Comments: NOTICE: this is the author’s version of a work that was accepted for publication in Personality and Individual Differences. Changes resulting from the publishing process, such as peer review, editing, corrections, structural formatting, and other quality control mechanisms may not be reflected in this document. Changes may have been made to this work since it was submitted for publication. A definitive version was subsequently published in Personality and Individual Differences, [VOL 95, (June 2016)] DOI:10.1016/j.paid.2016.02.025” Embargo period end 16th February 2018
Faculty / Department: Faculty of Science > Psychology
Depositing User: Pauline Bray
Date Deposited: 31 Mar 2016 12:35
Last Modified: 16 Feb 2018 01:15

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