Human female sexual signalling: hormones, mating motivation, and behaviour. (#113)
Research investigating human behaviour patterns leading to successful mate choice, sex differences in these patterns, and their physiological and hormonal correlates has been increasing in recent years. Here I will focus on female gonadal hormones and their impact on sexual signalling, considering the evolutionary functions of these behaviour patterns. In a study of 31 young Australian females we demonstrated changes in dress choice as a function of proximity to ovulation, with increases in skin exposure as women approach ovulation, and discuss how these changes relate to women’s preferences for masculine/feminine faces, their levels of progesterone and estradiol, and their self-reported mating motivation. For example, we have found a positive correlation between the proportion of skin exposed, and attraction to masculine faces in a short-term partner. Additionally, we will explore hormonal correlates of facial structure and perceived facial attractiveness across the menstrual cycle, with discussion of recent arguments against concealment of ovulation in humans.