Study: Women with Health Concerns Prefer Men with Masculine Characteristics

C. Price

Written by: C. Price

C. Price

C. Price is part of's content team. She writes advice articles, how-to guides, and studies — all relating to dating, relationships, love, sex, and more.

Edited by: Lillian Castro

Lillian Castro

Lillian Guevara-Castro brings more than 30 years of journalism experience to ensure DatingAdvice articles have been edited for overall clarity, accuracy, and reader engagement. She has worked at The Atlanta Journal and Constitution, The Gwinnett Daily News, and The Gainesville Sun covering lifestyle topics.

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A series of studies conducted by the University of Glasgow found women with concerns about health and disease prefer men with macho facial features, deeper voices and muscular bodies.

Benedict Jones and his researchers wanted to study the ways in which pathogen disgust might influence a woman’s preferences in men. Pathogen disgust refers to sensitivities about health and disease.

Previous research has found that in disease ridden regions, women prefer men with masculine faces, and women who perceive their own health to be poor also demonstrate stronger preferences for masculine voices.


“Women with concerns about health

prefer men with macho features.”

Researchers studied women’s sensitivities to three types of disgust: moral, sexual and pathogen.

Participants listened to male voices and viewed images of men that were considered to be masculine or feminine and were asked to rate which voices and images they found more attractive.

The study also included a portion where unattached women rated the masculinity of their ideal partner and attached women rated the masculinity of both their actual and ideal partner.

Researchers found women who are sensitive to pathogen disgust preferred men with deeper voices and manly faces and bodies. These women also identified their current or ideal partner as highly masculine.

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