Opposites don’t attract (in fact, we tend to fancy people who look very familiar)

Rob Waugh
·Contributor

Do opposites really attract? Not exactly, new studies have shown – in fact most of us seem to be drawn to people who look like us.

Researchers in El Salvador got volunteers to rate people’s faces in terms of attractiveness – and found that people tended to pick faces which looked like their own families.

Researchers asked 260 male and female volunteers from different areas of El Salvador and Malaysia which faces they found most attractive.

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Volunteers from country areas – where women had heavier faces – chose women who looked like the faces they were most familiar with, the researchers found.

‘In a world where it is said that “beauty is in the eye of the beholder’”, it might actually be that ‘”beauty is in the faces of those we behold”, since we grow to like those around us’, said Dr Carlota Batres from the University of St Andrews.

The researchers wrote, ‘Our results showed that participants from rural areas preferred heavier-looking female faces than participants from urban areas.’

‘We also found that the female faces from the rural areas were rated as looking heavier than the female faces from the urban areas’.