Women are happier with less attractive men, study finds

trending 12/12/2017

Scientists have discovered that women are happier with less attractive men. 

A study by Florida State University has found that heterosexual relationships tend to be more successful when the female is the more attractive one.

As part of the study, couples agreed to be rated on their attractiveness by people from Southern Methodist University and Florida State University, and were given a questionnaire to fill in, which explored their desire to remain fit and sexy. 

The study examined 113 exclusively newlywed couples in their 20s, who live near Dallas and had been married less than four months. (Which, is a pretty specific group, right!?)

But Researcher Tania Reynolds said the study has wider implications:

The results reveal that having a physically attractive husband may have negative consequences for wives, especially if those wives are not particularly attractive.

"It might be helpful to identify women at risk of developing more extreme weight-loss behaviours, which have been linked to other forms of psychological distress, such as depression, anxiety, substance abuse and dissatisfaction with life."

Worryingly, the study, published in the journal Body Image, found these 'social factors' had a negative impact on a woman's dieting habits and 'disorder eating'.

It also found that men weren't as pressured to diet as a consequence of their partner's looks:

"In contrast, men's dieting motivations were not significantly associated with their own and their partners' attractiveness."

Reynolds made a suggestion as to how couples can combat possible negative feelings:

"One way to help these women is for partners to be very reaffirming, reminding them, 'You're beautiful. I love you at any weight or body type'."

Or perhaps focusing on the ways they are a good romantic partner outside of attractiveness and emphasising those strengths: 'I really value you because you're a kind, smart and supportive partner.'