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This is the blog for the Psychology of Attractiveness Podcast, a monthly science show that covers the most interesting and cutting edge research on the psychology of attraction and relationships.

The podcast is produced by Dr. Rob Burriss of RobertBurriss.com, a research fellow at Northumbria University in Newcastle, UK.

Subscribe using the links on the right and interact by leaving a comment or emailing podcast [at-sign] robertburriss.com
Showing posts with label female competition. Show all posts
Showing posts with label female competition. Show all posts

Friday, 4 July 2014

June 2014: How to get your sperm swimming like Michael Phelps

How to get a man’s sperm swimming like a shoal of miniature Michael Phelpses, and why expensive handbags are a weapon of war. We also find out what time of the month the idea of incest is most likely to make you throw up.

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New research shows that it's not just men who get excited by attractive women: their sperm do too.

The articles covered in the show:

Antfolk, J., Lieberman, D., Albrecht, A., & Santtila, P. (2014). The self-regulation effect of fertility status on inbreeding aversion: When fertile, disgust increases more in response to descriptions of one’s own than of other’s inbreeding. Evolutionary Psychology, 12(3), 621-631. Read paper

Hudders, L., De Backer, C., Fisher, M., & Vyncke, P. (2014). The rival wears Prada: Luxury consumption as a female competition strategy. Evolutionary Psychology. Read paper

Leivers, S., Rhodes, G., & Simmons, L. W. (in press). Context-dependent relationship between a composite measure of men’s mate value and ejaculate quality. Behavioral Ecology. Read summary



And here's that TED talk I mentioned in the podcast. Kristina Durante talks about how women's interest in mating, consumerism, and female-femael competition vary over their ovulatory cycle.

Thursday, 26 December 2013

December 2013: Female competition special

Fight fight fight! It’s a female competition special! We all know men duke it out in the name of love, honour and occasionally plain boredom, but do women also seek to outcompete members of their own sex? And is this question so controversial we shouldn’t even be asking it?

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The articles covered in the show:

Durante, K. M., Griskevicius, V., Cantú, S. M., & Simpson, J. A. (in press). Money, status, and the ovulatory cycle. Journal of Marketing Research. Read summary

Fink, B. (2014). Female physical characteristics and intra-sexual competition in women. Personality and Individual Differences, 58, 138-141. Read summary

Muñoz-Reyes, J. A., Pita, M., Arjona, M., Sanchez-Pages, S., & Turiegano, E. (in press). Who is the fairest of them all? The independent effect of attractive features and self-perceived attractiveness on cooperation among women. Evolution and Human Behavior. Read summary

Piccoli, V., Foroni, F., & Carnaghi, A. (2013). Comparing group dehumanization and intra-sexual competition among normally ovulating women and hormonal contraceptive users. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 39(12), 1600-1609. Read summary

Vaillancourt, T. (2013). Do human females use indirect aggression as an intrasexual competition strategy? Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London, B, 368, 20130080. Read summary

Friday, 2 November 2012

October 2012: Why we cuddle

This month, we find out how the menstrual cycle influences competition and cooperation and why women’s sexual interest takes a nosedive after childbirth. We also ask the question: what’s the point of cuddling? Does it make us feel closer to our partner, or is it just a stepping stone to sex?

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"Ah, a nice cuddle. Cuddles are lovely. Not as lovely as sex, obviously..."

The articles covered in the show:

van Anders, S. M., Edelstein, R. S., Wade, R. M., & Samples-Steele, C. R. (in press). Descriptive experiences and sexual vs. nurturant aspects of cuddling between adult romantic partners. Archives of Sexual Behavior. Read summary

Rupp, H. A., James, T. W., Ketterson, E. D., Sengelaub, D. R., Ditzen, B., & Heiman, J. R. (in press). Lower sexual interest in postpartum women: Relationship to amygdala activation and intranasal oxytocin. Hormones and Behavior. Read summary

Lucas, M., & Koff, E. (in press). How conception risk affects competition and cooperation with attractive women and men. Evolution and Human Behavior. Read summary



Monday, 28 November 2011

November 2011: Women who want more kids look more feminine

How beauty is contributing to the worldwide population explosion, why men turn into idiots when a woman steps into the room, and why Meg Ryan was right: how frequently do women fake orgasm and why do they do it?

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From Miriam Law-Smith's study, composite faces of 18 women with lowest ‘ideal number of children’ (left) and 18 women with highest ‘ideal number of children’ (right).

The articles covered in the show:

Law Smith, M. J., Deady, D. K., Moore, F. R., Jones, B. C., Cornwell, R. E., Stirrat, M., et al. (in press). Maternal tendencies in women are associated with oestrogen levels and facial femininity. Hormones and Behavior. Read summary

Nauts, S., Metzmacher, M., Verwijmeren, T., Rommeswinkel, V., & Karremans, J. C. (in press). The mere anticipation of an interaction with a woman can impair men’s cognitive performance. Archives of Sexual Behavior. Read summary

Kaighobadi, F., Shackelford, T. K., & Weekes-Shackelford, V. A. (in press). Do women pretend orgasm to retain a mate? Archives of Sexual Behavior. Read summary

Tuesday, 25 October 2011

October 2011: Sex differences in jealousy

What’s the best way to investigate jealousy? In the lab, or on TV? Also, gossip: what is it good for, and how is idle chit chat linked to beauty? And why sharing Sunday lunch with mum and dad can make you broody.

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Using footage from a TV show about cheaters caught out on camera, Barry Kuhle investigated sex differences in the causes of jealousy.

The articles covered in the show:

Kuhle, B. X. (2011). Did you have sex with him? Do you love her? An in vivo test of sex differences in jealous interrogations. Personality and Individual Differences, 51(8), 1044-1047. Read summary

Massar, K., Buunk, A. P., & Rempt, S. (in press). Age differences in women’s tendency to gossip are mediated by their mate value. Personality and Individual Differences. Read summary

Waynforth, D. (in press). Grandparental investment and reproductive decisions in the longitudinal 1970 British cohort study. Proceedings of the Royal Society B-Biological Sciences. Read summary

Sunday, 13 February 2011

February 2011: Ian Stephen on skin tanning

Skin colour special! What’s behind the current fashion for skin tanning, and why do some people go to greater lengths to obtain a bronzed body? I speak to Dr. Ian Stephen of Nottingham University about whether a tan really does look healthy and attractive.

Example images from Stephen's paper that got the Guardian's commenters all flustered. The face in the middle shows the woman's natural colour. The face on the left shows the effect of sun tanning, while the face on the right shows the effect of eating more carotenoids. Participants thought the carotenoid colour looked healthier.

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The articles covered in the show:

Hill, S. E., & Durante, K. M. (2011). Courtship, competition, and the pursuit of attractiveness: Mating goals facilitate health-related risk taking and strategic risk suppression in women. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 37(3), 383-394. Read summary

Stephen, I. D., Coetzee, V., & Perrett, D. I. (in press). Carotenoid and melanin pigment coloration affect perceived human health. Evolution and Human Behavior. Read summary

I've got a couple of new online studies you might want to take a look at. Here's one on crime, convicts and culpability and another on attractiveness and your ideal partner.

Friday, 3 July 2009

July 2009: I'm ovulating - time to slap on the makeup!

Beauty Wars - how competition between women for the best partner can affect men’s preferences. Also this month, we find out how makeup use changes over the menstrual cycle and whether more curvaceous women are worse at spotting a bad boy.

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That time of the month? New research suggests that women spend more time on their appearance when ovulating.

The articles covered in the show:

Röder, S., Brewer, G., & Fink, B. (2009). Menstrual cycle shifts in women’s self-perception and motivation: a daily report method. Personality and Individual Differences, 47(6), 616-619. Read summary

Fisher, M., & Cox, A. (2009). The influence of female attractiveness on competitor derogation. Journal of Evolutionary Psychology, 7(2), 141-155. Read summary

Smith, F. G., Jones, B. C., Welling, L. L. W., Little, A. C., Vukovic, J., Main, J. C., et al. (2009). Waist-hip ratio predicts women's preferences for masculine male faces, but not perceptions of men's trustworthiness. Personality and Individual Differences, 47(5), 476-480. Read summary