Love at First Sight Means 8.2 Seconds of Eye Contact

Scientists discover women’s attractiveness can be measured by men’s gaze

By on March 25th, 2009 21:31 GMT
Since love has always been, and will perhaps continue to be relative to each individual, scientists have a really tough job to narrow the concept down to a universal “recipe.” The same goes for attractiveness, which is equally hard to pin down in theory. In this sense, a new study comes to show that, where men are concerned, an 8.2-second gaze means they rate a woman highly attractive, which raises the odds of love at first sight.

The latest study was conducted on 115 male students, gathered in one single location and confronted with beautiful young actresses and models. Their eye movements, as they interacted with the women, were studied with the help of hidden cameras and then analyzed by comparison. As the figures revealed, a man who rated a lady attractive held eye contact for about an average of 8.2 seconds, which increased his chances of falling in love at first sight, researchers said.

Oppositely, if the gaze lasted for about 4.5 seconds or less, the man in question was not interested in any way in the woman he had made eye contact with, which meant he did not consider her good-looking enough. Ladies, on the other hand, did not make this distinction, since they paid the same amount of attention and held eye contact for just as long with both men they were interested in and those they did not fancy, for one reason or another, the same study showed.

Researchers believe that this difference between men and women can best be explained by the fact that the former use eye contact to seek fertile and fit mates. Meanwhile, the latter shy from making eye contact or drawing unwanted attention onto themselves for fear of unwanted pregnancies and single parenthood, it has been said.

However, one might as well add, if eye contact does not lead to love, then online dating certainly will, as another recent study has indicated. Of the 22 million people registered with dating sites in 2007, one in five actually met their true love and walked down the aisle with them, which would clearly indicate that online dating comes in handy when looking for love. “To date, there has been no systematic study of love in the context-of relationships formed via online dating sites. But with the popularity of online dating, it is imperative we understand the factors that influence satisfaction in relationships formed in this way.” Dr. Jeff Gavin, a researcher who studied the phenomenon of “love on the Internet,” told the Daily Mail a while back.

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