Perceptions of Human Attractiveness Comprising Face and Voice Cues
Timothy Wells et al.; 2013
In human mate choice, sexually dimorphic faces and voices comprise hormone-mediated cues that purportedly develop as an indicator of mate quality or the ability to compete with same-sex rivals. If preferences for faces communicate the same biologically relevant information as do voices, then ratings of these cues should correlate. Sixty participants (30 male and 30 female) rated a series of opposite-sex faces, voices, and faces together with voices for attractiveness in a repeated measures computer-based experiment. The effects of face and voice attractiveness on face-voice compound stimuli were analyzed using a multilevel model. Faces contributed proportionally more than voices to ratings of face-voice compound attractiveness. Faces and voices positively and independently contributed to the attractiveness of male compound stimuli although there was no significant correlation between their rated attractiveness. A positive interaction and correlation between attractiveness was shown for faces and voices in relation to the attractiveness of female compound stimuli. Rather than providing a better estimate of a single characteristic, male faces and voices may instead communicate independent information that, in turn, provides a female with a better assessment of overall mate quality. Conversely, female faces and voices together provide males with a more accurate assessment of a single dimension of mate quality.