Amanda Pendolino
June 24, 2013

Study Says Your Face Shape Affects Whether You’re Wife Material

Do you have trouble staying in a long-term relationship? It could be the shape of your face!

Men tend to choose women with traditionally feminine features for flings, and opt for women with masculine features when it comes to settling down, says a new study published  in the British Journal of Psychology.

Feminine features, which are linked to attractiveness in general, include a smaller jawbone and fuller cheeks. These traits are also indicators of health, youth, fidelity and reproductive success. Men are drawn to these features, but often for short relationships — perhaps because men worry about these women straying.

“When a man has secured a mate, the potential cost of being discovered may increase his choosiness regarding short-term partners relative to unpartnered men, who can better increase their short-term mating success by relaxing their standards,” wrote the study authors.

They also wrote that men “may actually prefer less attractive/feminine women” in choosing long-term partners. I guess that’s comforting for us singles? We’re just too hot, ladies.

However, at the risk of being depressing, a different study found that for flings, men sought out women who looked “dumb,” “sleepy” or “sexually exploitable.” (Yay.)

Other studies have suggested that women approach relationships the same way men do, opting for traditionally masculine men for flings but settling down with geekier ones, perhaps because they’re concerned about how best to raise their children.

All of this makes sense — but doesn’t really account for personal preference. Don’t we all find different things attractive? Sure, we sometimes have biological reactions to certain male features but are we really making big life decisions based on high cheekbones or broad shoulders? These studies don’t seem to take into account personality or chemistry. Or whether you like geeks AND brutes.