In Summary

  • These findings, which have been published in the Evolution and Behavioral Journal, show that in general, people find the familiar attractive.
  • This is why men who look like their siblings are more likely to be attractive to women.
  • While the idea of looking for your brother in the men you date sounds disturbing, scientists insist that this might actually present a genetic advantage.

Pyschology has so far held it that women are attracted to men who are similar to their fathers. As it turns out, this is not entirely true. Findings of a new study suggest that there could be another motivation for why women choose the men they do. Apparently, according to these study findings, women are likely to be attracted to men who are similar to their brothers.

For the study, researchers at Northumbria University in the UK studied 32 women. These women were asked to share photos of their partners alongside photos of their brothers. The aim of the study was to understand why people choose the partners they do and why there are differences in the individual choices.

In the second part of the study, researchers studied photographs of celebrities, their partners and their brothers. The study subjects were then shown these celebrity photos and asked to choose which man was the partner. Almost always, they chose the brother.

The researchers concluded that this meant that there are strong physical similarities between the man a woman gets attached to romantically, and her brother. Clearly, family really does have an influence on the man a woman chooses to be her partner.

THE SCIENCE BEHIND IT

These findings, which have been published in the Evolution and Behavioral Journal, show that in general, people find the familiar attractive. This is why men who look like their siblings are more likely to be attractive to women. While the idea of looking for your brother in the men you date sounds disturbing, scientists insist that this might actually present a genetic advantage.

“Although siblings themselves are sexually aversive, sibling resemblance is not. Faces that subtly resemble family members could present useful cues to a potential reproductive partner with an optimal level of genetic dissimilarity,” says Dr. Tamsin Saxton, one of the study authors.