Unattractive men who are looking for a quick sexual hook-up should pay heed to this: They are more likely to overestimate how attractive and sexually desirable they are to women.
Translation: Ugly men think they're hot, but they're not. They're just not all that.
The study: Researchers at Williams College and the University of Texas-Austin recruited 96 men and 103 women to participate in a "speed dating" event. The participants, all of whom were undergraduate college students, first completed a survey rating themselves for attractiveness and their desire for a short-term sexual encounter. Each spoke for three minutes to five members of the opposite sex. When the speed dating event concluded, participants rated their partners for physical attractiveness and how interested in them sexually each appeared to be.
- Men who were looking for a short-term sexual hook-up were more likely to inflate women's sexual desire for them.
- Men who thought they were "hot" overestimated women's desire for them.
- The more attractive a man perceived a woman to be, the more likely he was to overestimate his desire in her.
- The men whom women considered attractive did not overestimate either their own desire for the women or the women's desire for them.
- All the women in the study consistently underestimated their male partners' interest in them sexually.
Why? The researchers said the discrepancy is explained based on evolution. Men who are looking for casual sex are limited only by the number of women they can get to have sex with them, so overestimation makes sense.
The study findings were published in the journal Psychological Science.
--From the Editors at Netscape