The INSIDER Summary:
- A study found that more attractive people may have a harder time making relationships last.
- They also found that people who feel more attractive may have a higher chance of having a wandering eye.
It’s not easy being really, really ridiculously good looking.
Sure, you might make more money, be promoted more quickly, be seen as more “morally upright,” and make friends with equally-beautiful people, but your perfectly symmetrical face and smoking-hot bod may just be the downfall of your happily ever after.
A study, conducted this year by researchers led by social psychologist Christine Ma-Kellams, included several experiments to determine if your attractiveness level can doom the success of long-term relationships and marriages.
In the first experiment, two women rated men from high school yearbooks on levels of attractiveness. Then they checked their marital statuses on Ancestry.com and found that those that they found most desirable were divorced at a higher rate. They did the same with attractive celebrities from IMDB and Forbes and found similar results.
Another experiment found that when participants who were physically attractive and in a committed relationship were more likely to show interest in photos of people of the opposite sex, leading researchers to believe that attractive people may be more likely to keep an eye out for “alternative options” while in a relationship.
“The findings from Study 3 extended the findings from Studies 1 and 2 by demonstrating that [physical attractiveness] not only predicts relationship duration and likelihood of dissolution, but it also predicts how individuals perceive relationship alternatives and derogate attractive alternatives in particular,” the study said.
A final experiment, however, showed that even if you’re not a total model, just making yourself feel hot can lead you to stray. When participants looked at photos of less-conventionally attractive people of their same sex — thereby making themselves feel more attractive by comparison, so the researchers’ theory went — they then rated photos of attractive “target” people more highly.
In other words, if you are hot, or just feel hot, you may be more likely to pursue other options if you’re unhappy or just bored in a long-term relationship.
“These findings suggest that the more favorable traits possessed by physically attractive individuals can stand as a relational liability and thus may confer benefits to the individual at hand (the physically attractive person), but not the relationship at stake,” the study reads.
Of course, this should all be taken with a huge boulder of salt. This is one small study of several peoples’ attractiveness preferences. People from all walks of life find different things beautiful based on their culture, age, personal preference, and upbringing.
But if you’ve been unlucky in love, you may find some solace in this study: You might just be too sexy for a relationship.
SEE ALSO: The most attractive names in the world
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