Let us state this clear that themain aim behind human survival is propagation of DNA, which is done throughboth reproducing and enhancing fitness. Since we already know that reproductiondepends on sex and mates; from this point on arises our first problem. When anindividual chooses his mate, multiple factors influence his/her preferences.For example, men tend to prefer young women with a low waist-to-hip ratio and theyare known to be more interested in short-term casual sex compared to women. Matevalues significantly differ across genders where man’s mate value depends mainlyon his wealth, status, and power.
In contrast, a woman’s mate value isinfluenced by her youth, beauty, and physical attractiveness. Those factorsalso include facial symmetry, facial averageness, facial expression of sexhormone levels, and male upper-body musculature, function as fitnessindicators. To simply state it, average faces are attractive in males, but femaleswith faces that emphasize certain areas like large eyes, small noses, and fulllips are considered to be more attractive. Males who exhibit testosterone-inducedfeatures such as high cheekbones, strong jaws, strong chins, and large noses areconsidered to be more attractive compared to other males who don’t have these features.Before we proceed into analyzing each of the factors, we need to keep in mindthat the indicators of mate choice also tend to demonstrate the presence of geneticbasis.
Therefore, we could assume that genetic quality can be the key criteriain human mate choice. Fitness indicators like health andgenetic quality withstands the individual’s expected Darwinian fitness. In thisfactor, it requires individual to choose sexual partners with high fitness inorder to ensure higher chances of transmitting the best genes to their offsprings. Additionally, certain vulnerable traits aim to amplify the apparentvariance in phenotypic quality across individuals. Visible individualdifferences and traits work to amplify the power of sexual selection and allowit to evolve better quality and fitness in mate choice. Indicators of GeneticQuality Fitness indicators include both bodily traits and behavioral traits whichoften play a big role in advertising good genes. What is meant by ‘Good gene’?They are those genes that show a genotype with few expressed deleteriousmutation, which might result in lowering fitness. Sexual selection that isbased in genetic quality indicators play a major role in developing thepersistence of long-lived species to certain mutations.
The spread of harmfulmutations could significantly limit the evolution of sexual reproduction. Inmost cultures “goodness and beauty are the same”: our sense of beauty has reshapedour perception through evolution where we are now aware of what is costlyversus cheap, fit versus unfit, etc. Referring back to mate choices, indicatorsinclude revealing age, health, nutritional status, size, strength, aggressivedominance, social status, disease resistance, or overall vigor.
These indicators,however, emphasize resources and health attributing to raising offspring, but sometimeignore the importance of genetic quality. Females shape tend to select thosemales with good genes, and ignore those with the bad genes as those with goodgenes show strong “developmental competence”- resistance to disease,injury, and harmful mutations that cause “fluctuating asymmetry”during development. Facial Signals Facial musculature revolvesaround the three divisions of attractive faces: bilateral symmetry, average,and secondary sexual characters. Facial symmetry presents a strong marker of goodhealth.
Those who show less symmetrical faces tend to withstand stress morefirmly. This explains humans’ preferences to mate people with symmetricalfacial features. Asymmetric facial features are considered to be both lesshealthy and less attractive. Social judgments that are made from the faces iswhat underlie the term attractiveness. We can distinguish those differences themore we get familiarized with those terms. Facial asymmetry (FA) shows geneticdisturbances and increases with exposure to environmental perturbations duringdevelopment whereas bilateral symmetry is related with heterozygosis andresistance to infection. This explains how men with asymmetric faces and bodyfeatures tend to have higher basal metabolic rates, lower IQs, and fewer sexualpartners compared to their more symmetric peers.
The relationship is also knownas the “good genes” approach, which states that the attractivefeatures can contribute in explaining an individual’s freedom from parasitesand infections. Intelligence Beauty is another indicatorof good health. One known fact is that physically attractive people are much healthiercompared to less attractive people. In general, it is quite obvious that manperceives attractive others as more intelligent, good, and competent. Men showtendencies to be more attracted towards young and attractive women whereaswomen tend to prefer rich and powerful men. To explain it more, infants of12-month old play longer with facially attractive dolls compared with dolls thatappears scary, ugly or simple unattractive.
Here we can assume that the standardof beauty might therefore be innate and culturally universal. Skin tone andluminosity can be considered as marks that demonstrate a person’s health, reproductivecapability and so they are though thought to be major signal for mate selectionand attractiveness. Another example that could be set is that women withhourglass figure are in fact more fertile due to high female hormone level. Onefamous statement which is kind of considered universally true is “Beauty blindspeople”. Size of female bodies demonstrates several fitness enhancing functionsincluding insulation, storage of calories and fertility regulation. When itcomes to choosing mates, men with scarce resources usually prefer heavier womenwhile men with abundant resources seem to prefer thinner women. Resourceavailability can be considered as a lucid force in determining mate preferences.
Waist -to- Hip Ratio Malepreference is considered as 0 .70.The WHR of healthy, pre-menopausal women in industrialsocieties typically ranges from .
67 to .80. Men find women with low WHRs themost attractive where they tended to prefer women with a .70 WHR compared towomen with .80, who in turn is more attractive than women with .
90. However, weneed to remember that this wasn’t a stable preference between all cultureswhere every culture tested tended to have their own preferences. Wetsman andMarlowe examined male WHR preferences in a foraging Hadza society and therethey found that Hadza strongly preferred heavier women and they did not preferwomen with WHR of either a .
70 or .9 0. WHR and BMI have played a significantcase when women wanted to get pregnant where the first live birth occurs at alater age in women with lower WHR. Men are attracted to low waist-to-hip ratiosin females, and a low female waist-to-hip ratio correlate with youth,fertility, and health Other than what has been mentioned,there are other criteria of mate choices. For example, women, for marriage, tendto prefer a man with a wide smile, small eyes, a big nose, symmetric bodyshape, wider shoulders, prominent cheek bone. and a large jaw. The features insum indicate a strong testosterone level in men.
Men with higher testosterone have moremasculine – structured faces. Features including distance from eyes to chin andsize of lips are some examples that show female attractiveness. Women who have higherestrogen levels have large breasts, narrow waists, and high pitched voices. Womenprefer. Both women and men who are aiming to have a long- term relationship wantintelligent, kind, understanding, dependable and healthy mates.
Women tend toprefer men with who they feel physically safe and protective with them. Manywomen prefer men with who they can easily develop an intimate and emotionallysatisfying relationship (Buss, 1994).