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Some Rights Reserved

Summary: The Psychology of Attractiveness Podcast focuses on the scientific study of human attraction. Every month Dr. Rob Burriss shines a light on the most fascinating new research on attraction, jealousy, lust and love. Recent topics include: what is the evolutionary purpose of oral sex? Why do 75% of ovulating women wear red? And how do tattoos attract men, and guitars attract women? Join Rob to find out the answers to all these questions and more! Episodes last 10-15 minutes and sometimes feature interviews with researchers.

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  • Artist: www.robertburriss.com
  • Copyright: Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 Unported

Podcasts:

 Pregnancy and desire, and are bigger breasts best? 16 June 2015 | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: Unknown

We know that pregnant women get cravings for unusual foods, but does pregnancy also affect what women desire in a man? We also look at a new experiment that shows once and for all whether men prefer larger or smaller breasts. You'll be surprised by the results! Download the MP3 Participate in my research! The psychology of fail videos (women only) How do you help others? Rate me! Rate, review, or listen in iTunes or in Stitcher. Read the transcript! Are Bigger Breasts Best? Pregnancy and Desire Does a woman change her taste in men when she is pregnant? Joanna Malinowska/freestocks.orgThe articles covered in the show: Dixson, B. J., Duncan, M., & Dixson, A. F. (in press). The role of breast size and areolar pigmentation in perceptions of women’s sexual attractiveness, reproductive health, sexual maturity, maternal nurturing abilities, and age. Archives of Sexual Behavior. Read summaryLimoncin, E., Ciocca, G., Gravina, G. L., Carosa, E., Mollaioli, D., Cellerino, A., et al. (in press). Pregnant women's preferences for men's faces differ significantly from nonpregnant women. The Journal of Sexual Medicine. Read summary

 Male rivalry: sex, money, and morality. 2 June 2015 | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: Unknown

Decisions, decisions. We find out how our rational minds go all screwy when we're faced with attractive rivals or sexual competitors. Three new experiments show how sexual rivalry primes men to be cruel, self-centred, and prone to risk. Download the MP3 Participate in my research! The psychology of fail videos (women only) How do you help others? Rate me! Rate, review, or listen in iTunes or in Stitcher. Read the transcript! Handsome Men Make Other Men Want to Gamble Competition Piques Men’s Interest in Sex How Does Competition Affect Men’s Morality? Arm wrestling is a bit daft, but it doesn't do any harm, right? Perhaps not. New research shows that competition can influence men's psychology in unexpected ways.The articles covered in the show: Chan, E. Y. (in press). Physically-attractive males increase men's financial risk-taking. Evolution and Human Behavior. Read summaryGorelik, G., & Bjorklund, D. F. (in press). The effect of competition on men’s self-reported sexual interest. Evolutionary Psychological Science. Read summaryTrémolière, B., Kaminski, G., & Bonnefon, J.-F. (2015). Intrasexual competition shapes men's anti-utilitarian moral decisions. Evolutionary Psychological Science, 1(1), 18-22. Read summary

 Beer goggles and penis arrows. 19 May 2015 | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: Unknown

We strap on our beer goggles and find out how alcohol influences attractiveness. Also, you have a penis! Well, half of you do, and we discover what happens to men’s sexual thoughts when they’re reminded of what they’re packing in their tighty whities. Download the MP3 Participate in my research! The psychology of fail videos (women only) How do you help others? Rate me! Rate, review, or listen in iTunes or in Stitcher. Read the transcript! Paying Attention to your Genitals Changes the Kind of Relationships you Seek Reverse Beer Goggles This cool dude is probably experiencing high 'genital salience'. Ladies looking for commitment should steer clear.The articles covered in the show: Fetterman, A. K., Kruger, N. N., & Robinson, M. D. (2015). Sex-linked mating strategies diverge with a manipulation of genital salience. Motivation and Emotion, 39(1), 99-103. Read summaryVan Den Abbeele, J., Penton-Voak, I. S. A., A. S., Stephen, I. D., & Munafò, M. R. (in press). Increased facial attractiveness following moderate, but not high, alcohol consumption. Alcohol and Alcoholism. Read summary

 Is beauty contagious? 5 May 2015 | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: Unknown

Is beauty contagious? How the average attractiveness of a group of people is influenced by its members. Also, how the ratio of men to women in our social group meddles with our mating psychology. Download the MP3Rate me! Rate, review, or listen in iTunes or in Stitcher. Read the transcript! Why a Skewed Chinese Sex Ratio Doesn't Spell Disaster Attractive Friends Make You Look More Attractive One man and four women: new research shows how our 'mating strategies' (how we seek partners and what we find attractive) are influenced by the relative numbers of men and women we encounter.The articles covered in the show:Schacht, R., & Borgerhoff Mulder, M. (2015). Sex ratio effects on reproductive strategies in humans. Royal Society Open Science, 2, 140402. Read summaryvan Osch, Y., Blanken, I., Meijs, M. H. J., & van Wolferen, J. (in press). A group’s physical attractiveness is greater than the average attractiveness of its members: The group attractiveness effect. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin. Read summary

 How parents meddle in their children's love lives. 21 April 2015 | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: Unknown

Meet the parents! Two new experiments show how choosing a partner can send shockwaves across the generations. We’ll find out how parents meddle in their children’s love lives, and how sexy sons lead to handsome fathers. Download the MP3Rate me! Rate, review, or listen in iTunes or in Stitcher. Read the transcript! Sexy Sons Make Fathers Seem Sexier How Parents Meddle in Their Kids’ Love Lives Robert De Niro kept a close eye on Ben Stiller in the Focker movie franchise. But how successful are meddling parents at interfering in their children's love lives? The articles covered in the show:Apostelou, M., Kasapi, K., & Arakliti, A. (2015). Will they do as we wish? An investigation of the effectiveness of parental manipulation of mating behavior. Evolutionary Psychological Science, 1(1), 28-36. Read summaryProkop, P. (in press). The putative son’s attractiveness alters the perceived attractiveness of the putative father. Archives of Sexual Behavior. Read summary

 How 'coalitional mate retention' tactics prevent your partner cheating. 7 April 2015 | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: Unknown

With a little help from my friends: How we use 'coalitional mate retention' tactics to prevent our partner cheating. We take a look at two new experiments that uncover how our friends work to keep our partners faithful. Download the MP3Rate me! Rate, review, or listen in iTunes or in Stitcher. Read the transcript! Friends Help Friends Keep Partners Faithful New research shows how friends work to keep our partners faithful, and reveals how they decide to expose any infidelities they detect.The articles covered in the show:Barbaro, N., Pham, M. N., & Shackelford, T. K. (in press). Solving the problem of partner infidelity: Individual mate retention, coalitional mate retention, and in-pair copulation frequency. Personality and Individual Differences. Read summaryPham, M. N., Barbaro, N., Mogilski, J. K., & Shackelford, T. K. (2015). Coalitional mate retention is correlated positively with friendship quality involving women, but negatively with male-male friendship quality. Personality and Individual Differences, 79, 87-90. Read summary

 Make up and 'facial contrast', with Alex Jones. 24 March 2015 | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: Unknown

Why do women wear make up? I interview Alex Jones of Gettysburg College in Pennsylvania about his new research into cosmetics and 'facial contrast' (follow @AlexJonesPHD on Twitter). Also, how did Kim Kardashian break the Internet? Was it her massive bum, or the pronounced curvature of her lower back? Download the MP3Rate me! Rate, review, or listen in iTunes or in Stitcher. Read the transcript! How Kim Kardashian’s Curvy Back Broke the Internet. Why do women wear make up? I interview Alex Jones of Gettysburg College PA about his new research that suggests make up works by enhancing female-typical 'facial contrast'.The articles covered in the showJones, A. L. (2015). Cosmetics alter biologically-based factors of beauty: evidence from facial contrast. Evolutionary Psychology, 13(1), 210-229. Read summaryJones, A. L., & Kramer, R. S. S. (2015). Facial cosmetics have little effect on attractiveness judgments compared with identity. Perception, 44, 79-86. Read summaryLewis, D. M. G., Russell, E. M., Al-Shawaf, L., & Buss, D. M. (in press). Lumbar curvature: A novel evolved standard of attractiveness. Evolution and Human Behavior. Read summaryThe images Alex and I mentioned in the show Richard Russell's "The Illusion of Sex" placed third in the 2009 Illusion of the Year Contest. Most people perceive the face on the left as female, and the face on the right as male. In fact, the photographs show the same face (a computer-generated androgynous face): the only difference is that the contrast of the face on the left is higher than the that of the face on the right. The effect is so strong, it is difficult not to see a woman and a man. A figure from Alex's paper. The white lines encircle the 'features' (eye, eyebrow, and mouth) and the black lines the surrounding areas. It was the contrast between the features and the surrounding skin that Alex measured. He confirmed that facial contrast is higher in women than in men. His other research showed that women exaggerate these sex differences with make up. This figure is from the Lewis paper, and shows how he manipulated back curvature. Men preferred a curvature of around 45 degrees. Listen in to find out why.

 Beautiful leaders - undermining democracy with a pretty face. 10 March 2015 | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: Unknown

How democracy is undermined by the psychology of attractiveness: we discover why good looking candidates have an advantage come polling day, either because their beauty distracts from their extreme policies, or (if they're very lucky) because their constituents are ill. Download the MP3Rate me! Rate, review, or listen in iTunes or in Stitcher. Remember David Cameron's allegedly airbrushed poster from 2010? Well, he might have been onto something...The articles covered in the show:Herrmann, M., & Shikano, S. (in press). Attractiveness and facial competence bias face-based inferences of candidate ideology. Political Psychology. Read summaryZebrowitz, L. A., Franklin, R. G., & Palumbo, R. (2015). Ailing voters advance attractive congressional candidates. Evolutionary Psychology, 13(1), 16-28. Read summary

 Lingerie, chocolate, and shopping. 24 Feb 2015 | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: Unknown

Consumer psychology meets the psychology of attraction: how female fertility influences desire for variety in products. And look but don’t touch: observing male behaviour in lingerie stores. Download the MP3Rate me! Rate, review, or listen in iTunes or in Stitcher. More chocolate is always better than less chocolate. But new research shows that women are more interested in getting a good variety of chocolate (and other consumer products) when they're most fertile.The articles covered in the show:Moule, K. R., & Fisher, M. (2014). You can look but you cannot touch: Male behaviors observed in lingerie stores. Human Ethology Bulletin, 29(4), 4-17. Read paperDurante, K. M., & Rae Arsena, A. (in press). Playing the field: The effect of fertility on women’s desire for variety. Journal of Consumer Research. Read summary

 Killing the 'thin ideal'. Jan 2015 | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: Unknown

Why do women have sex? We find out, using the YSEX? questionnaire. Also, how to stop the ‘thin ideal’ messing with our minds. And forget Star Wars - it’s time for Sperm Wars: are men turned on by pornography that depicts ‘sperm competition’? Download the MP3Rate me! Rate, review, or listen in iTunes or in Stitcher. Read the transcripts! Why Do Women Have Sex? How to Kill the Thin Ideal What Kind of Porn do Men Prefer? Most women in the media are skinny, and consumers are taking this 'thin ideal' to heart. But what happens if we tell them that men prefer larger women?The articles covered in the show:Armstrong, H. L., & Reissing, E. D. (in press). Women’s motivations to have sex in casual and committed relationships with male and female partners. Archives of Sexual Behavior. Read summaryMeltzer, A. L., & McNulty, J. K. (in press). Telling women that men desire women with bodies larger than the thin-ideal improves women’s body satisfaction. Social Psychological and Personality Science. Read summaryProkop, P. (2015). Perception of intensity of sperm competition on the part of males. Personality and Individual Differences, 76, 99-103. Read summary

 Sexy footballers earn more money. Dec 2014 | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: Unknown

We all know the stereotype of the handsome jock who scores on and off the field, but is there a real link between beauty and ball skills? Also, the way to a man's heart is through his stomach, but what can a person's food preferences tell you about the kind of relationships they're after? And we find out how to use science to craft the most effective internet dating profile. Score! Download the MP3 Rate me! Rate, review, or listen in iTunes or in Stitcher. Ronaldo scores loads of goals and is handsome as a Ken doll fresh from the factory. But are his ball skills and his beauty linked? Enrique Lin/FlickrThe articles covered in the show:Rosar, U., Hagenah, J., & Klein, M. (in press). Physical attractiveness and monetary success in German Bundesliga. Soccer & Society. Read summaryAl-Shawaf, L., Lewis, D. M. G., Alley, T. R., & Buss, D. M. (in press). Mating strategy, disgust, and food neophobia. Appetite. Read summaryStrassberg, D. S., & English, B. L. (in press). An experimental study of men’s and women’s personal ads. Archives of Sexual Behavior. Read summary

 Why do women who have anal sex, have anal sex? Nov 2014 | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: Unknown

"I’ll have what she’s having": why younger women are more prone to pursuing the partners of their peers. We also find out whether high heels really do put you one step ahead of the competition, and why women who engage in anal sex engage in anal sex. I mean seriously, why?? Download the MP3Rate me! Rate, review, or listen in iTunes or in Stitcher. Do high heels or flats make a woman more attractive? Nicolas Gueguen took to the streets of France to find out. Jake Guild/FlickrThe articles covered in the show:Little, A. C., Caldwell, C. A., Jones, B. C., & DeBruine, L. M. (in press). Observer age and the social transmission of attractiveness in humans: Younger women are more influenced by the choices of popular others than older women. British Journal of Psychology. Read summaryGuéguen, N. (in press). High heels increase women’s attractiveness. Archives of Sexual Behavior. Read summaryReynolds, G. L., Fisher, D. G., & Rogala, B. (in press). Why women engage in anal intercourse: Results from a qualitative study. Archives of Sexual Behavior. Read summary

 Is blonde hair attractive because it's rare? Oct 2014 | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: Unknown

Is blonde and red hair attractive because of how it looks, or because it’s rare? Also, “my genes made me do it”: can men (or women) blame their cheating ways on their genetic inheritance? And we also continue last month’s foray into the murky world of mate-poaching, and discover the differences between the sexes when it comes to detecting potential partner pilferers. Download the MP3Rate me! Rate, review, or listen in iTunes or in Stitcher. Some have theorised that red and blonde hair is attractive because it is rare. New research by Zinnia Janif tests this idea. Image credit: qsimple on flickr.comThe articles covered in the show:Janif, Z. J., Brooks, R. C., & Dixson, B. J. (in press). Are preferences for women's hair color frequency-dependent? Adaptive Human Behavior and Physiology. Read summaryEin-Dor, T., Perry, A., Hirschberger, G., Birnbaum, G. E., & Deutsch, D. (in press). Coping with mate poaching: gender differences in detection of infidelity-related threats. Evolution and Human Behavior. Read summaryZietsch, B. P., Westberg, L., Santtila, P., & Jern, P. (in press). Genetic analysis of human extrapair mating: Heritability, between-sex correlation, and receptor genes for vasopressin and oxytocin. Evolution and Human Behavior. Read summary

 Why single, sex-hungry men crave an iPhone. Sept 2014 | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: Unknown

This month we discover which personality traits make a person lucky in love. Also, how men and women respond differently when their partner is complimented, and why single men crave iPhones. Download the MP3Rate me! Rate, review, or listen in iTunes or in Stitcher. What kind of man is desperate to buy an iPhone? New research suggests it's not only the kind of man who has the time and inclination to make himself a smartphone hat.The articles covered in the show:Hennighausen, C., & Schwab, F. (2014). Relationship status moderates men's conspicuous consumption of smartphones. Letters on Evolutionary Behavioral Science, 5(2), 13-16. Read summaryBerg, V., Lummaa, V., Lahdenperä, M., Rotkirch, A., & Jokela, M. (in press). Personality and long-term reproductive success measured by the number of grandchildren. Evolution and Human Behavior. Read summaryBrown, C. M., Daniels, E. R., Lustgraaf, C. J. N., & Sacco, D. F. (2014). Verbal compliments as a differential source of mate poaching threat for men and women. Evolutionary Psychology, 12(4), 736-756. Read paper

 Penis size, with Brian Mautz; eat fruit to get a tan. Aug 2014 | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: Unknown

Stay out of the sun! New research suggests that the skin colour change associated with sun tanning isn't as attractive as the effects of eating carotenoid-rich fruits and vegetables, like tomatoes, pumpkins, and spinach. Can an attractive personality make you appear more attractive? And we find out why when women see red, women see red.Plus, as a special summer surprise, Hannah Rowland of the Behavioural Ecology and Evolution Podcast interviews Brian Mautz at the ISBE2014 conference about his research on penis size and attractiveness. Download the MP3I was interviewed by Prof. Alice Roberts this month for an episode of BBC Radio 4's Inside Science. Click here and skip to 24.40 to hear me defend Evolutionary Psychology with all my (feeble) might! Rate me! Rate, review, or listen in iTunes or in Stitcher. Scoff the orange, but scoff it in the shade: new research by Carmen Lefevre shows that the skin colour we get from eating carotenoid rich foods is more attractive than the colour we get from tanning.The articles covered in the show:Mautz, B. S., Wong, B. B. M., Peters, R. A., & Jennions, M. D. (2013). Penis size interacts with body shape and height to influence male attractiveness. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 110(17), 6925-6930. Read summaryLefevre, C. E., & Perrett, D. I. (in press). Fruit over sunbed: Carotenoid skin coloration is found more attractive than melanin coloration. The Quarterly Journal of Experimental Psychology. Read summaryZhang, Y., Kong, F., Zhong, Y., & Kou, H. (2014). Personality manipulations: Do they modulate facial attractiveness ratings? Personality and Individual Differences, 70, 80-84. Read summaryPazda, A. D., Prokop, P., & Elliot, A. J. (in press). Red and romantic rivalry: viewing another woman in red increases perceptions of sexual receptivity, derogration, and intentions to mate-guard. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin. Read summary

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