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Being a good person can substantially increase your desirability as a romantic partner - but even more so if you are physically attractive too - new research from the University of Cologne has confirmed.

Physical attractiveness was perceived as particularly desirable when looking for a short-term sexual affair, whereas kindness and trustworthiness was found to be particularly important when looking for a long-term romantic partner.

Daniel Ehlebracht and Detlef Fetchenhauer from the Institute of Sociology and Social Psychology at the University of Cologne, together with Olga Stavrova from the University of Tilburg and Daniel Farrelly from the University of Worcester, carried out the research recently published in The British Journal of Psychology.

They discovered that men were also more prone to shifting their priorities towards either physical attractiveness or trustworthiness when looking for short-term or long-term partners, respectively, while women’s preferences remained more stable across the different contexts.

Although physical attractiveness and kindness were each desirable in their own right when evaluating potential long-term partners, it was found that these qualities were mutually reinforced when they occurred together.


If you would like more information, a copy of the study, or to speak to one of the researchers, please contact Sophie O’Sullivan at BlueSky PR on or +44 (0)1582 790 711.

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