Voice appeal 'linked to sex life'
September 20, 2004
People with attractive voices are likely to be more sexually adventurous, according to a study.
US researchers got 149 men and women to rate the attractiveness of a series of recorded voices.
They found the most appealing voices belonged to people who had sex at an earlier age, had more sexual partners and were more prone to infidelity.
The team at the University at Albany also said there was a link between the attractiveness of the voice and body.
In the study, men with broad shoulders and narrow hips, which are related to testosterone and growth, also tended to have attractive voices.
In women, voice attractiveness, which was rated between one and 10 in the study, was linked to a narrow waist and broad hips.
Report co-author Gordon Gallup, from the New York university's department of psychology, said: "In short, ratings of voice attractiveness are correlated with promiscuity in both men and women.
"When the phone rings, even though you may not know the person at the other end of the line, as soon as they speak you usually know whether you are talking to a male or female, and a child or adult.
"In other words, the sound of a person's voice conveys information about the biological status of the speaker.
"Our research shows that voice might be a medium that also conveys subtle information about sexual behaviour and body configuration."
The authors also said that there was evidence to show the quality of the person's voice could be used to predict the body's symmetry.
In comparing the length of the little finger on both hands, they noted that people with voices rated as attractive tend to have similar length fingers on each hand.
As the voice attractiveness rating decreases, the difference increases.
The report said one theory to explain the findings was that prior to the development of artificial lighting, people were more reliant on voice at night as a means of discerning sex appeal.
Evolutionary biologist Dr Sarah Collins, of the University of Plymouth, said she had done research on the subject but not found a link.
"There are many things which make a voice attractive and it does not mean that a person will be physically appealing.
"Look at David Beckham, people think he is attractive but they often say they don't like his voice.
But she said one explanation for the findings could be that people found confident voices attractive.
"If someone is confident, it is not that surprising that they may have had more girlfriends or boyfriends."
Source: BBC News Online, 20/09/2004
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