Correlated male preferences for femininity in female faces and voices

Paul J. Fraccaro, David R. Feinberg, Lisa M. DeBruine, Anthony C. Little, Christopher D. Watkins, Benedict C. Jones

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

47 Citations (SciVal)


Sexually dimorphic physical traits are important for mate choice and mate preference in many species, including humans. Several previous studies have observed that women's preferences for physical cues of male masculinity in different domains (e.g., visual and vocal) are correlated. These correlations demonstrate systematic, rather than arbitrary, variation in women's preferences for masculine men and are consistent with the proposal that sexually dimorphic cues in different domains reflect a common underlying aspect of male quality. Here we present evidence for a similar correlation between men's preferences for different cues of femininity in women; although men generally preferred feminized to masculinized versions of both women's faces and voices, the strength of men's preferences for feminized versions of female faces was positively and significantly correlated with the strength of their preferences for feminized versions of women's voices. In a second study, this correlation occurred when men judged women's attractiveness as long-term, but not short-term, mates, which is consistent with previous research. Collectively, these findings (1) present novel evidence for systematic variation in men's preferences for feminine women, (2) present converging evidence for concordant preferences for sexually dimorphic traits in different domains, and (3) complement findings of correlations between women's facial and vocal femininity.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)447-461
Number of pages15
JournalEvolutionary Psychology
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2010


  • Face attractiveness
  • Mate preference
  • Sexual dimorphism
  • Sexual selection
  • Voice attractiveness


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