Whereas a recent study managed to translate the poetic notion of love at first sight into a specific and almost palpable 8.2 seconds of eye contact, a new study comes to show that women who are single take longer to look at men they come across. The study also shows men are all the same
, in that there is no difference between singles and those who are in a relationship, as LiveScience
Researchers led by neuroscientist Heather Rupp of The Kinsey Institute at Indiana University had 59 men and 56 women aged 17-26 analyze a batch of 510 photos of women and men. The volunteers involved in the study were both committed to a relationship (more or less serious) and single, in almost equal proportions: 21 of the women and 25 of the men had partners at the time they took part in the study.
The volunteers were also asked to offer their “gut reaction” to the appearance of the people in the photos, by rating their attractiveness and based on other subjective criteria. When researchers analyzed all answers at the end of the study, they discovered that, as expected, both single and attached women had similar subjective ratings of the photos they were presented with. The difference came though when they also analyzed the time women spent looking at the photos of men, with the single ones lingering more on each picture, which showed they had a greater interest in their subject.
Oppositely, all men looked for about the same amount of time at pictures of women, regardless of whether they were in a relationship or not. As Rupp explains, these differences could hint at reproductive strategies that come into play “early in the cognitive processing of potential partners,” while also playing an important part in attraction and behavior.
As also noted above, a recent study
determined not long ago that a 8.2-second eye contact is the closest thing a man can get to love at first sight, since this is the time he spends looking at a woman whom he considers highly attractive. 4.5 seconds of eye contact, on the other hand, mean the man does not consider a woman good looking enough, while women make absolutely no distinction of this type when they’re face to face with a man they have never met before, the same study indicated.