Archives of Sexual Behavior

, Volume 47, Issue 4, pp 827–828 | Cite as

Is Male Facial Width-to-Height Ratio the Target of Sexual Selection?

  • Barnaby J. W. Dixson
Letter to the Editor

Physiognomy, the process of interpreting personality and behavioral disposition from physical features, influences diverse judgments from legal and voting decisions to choices of romantic partners (Todorov, 2017). Among the many facial metrics implicated in personality assessment, the facial width-to-height ratio (fWHR) has received considerable attention. Men with wider faces rank higher on status seeking, social dominance, and aggressiveness (Geniole, Denson, Dixson, Carré, & McCormick, 2015). Recently, Arnocky et al. (2017) provided compelling evidence that men’s sexual openness, sexual drive, and intended sexual infidelity were also positively associated with fWHR. These results contribute to a growing body of research suggesting that women face costs when selecting masculine men as long-term partners (Dixson, Sulikowski, Gouda-Vossos, Rantala, & Brooks, 2016).

Sexual selection has been implicated in shaping the evolution of high fWHR in men through androgenic effects during...


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of PsychologyThe University of QueenslandSt. Lucia, BrisbaneAustralia

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