Mate Choice Copying in Humans

  title={Mate Choice Copying in Humans},
  author={Dc Waynforth},
  journal={Human Nature},
There is substantial evidence that in human mate choice, females directly select males based on male display of both physical and behavioral traits. In non-humans, there is additionally a growing literature on indirect mate choice, such as choice through observing and subsequently copying the mating preferences of conspecifics (mate choice copying). Given that humans are a social species with a high degree of sharing information, long-term pair bonds, and high parental care, it is likely that… 
Generalization in mate-choice copying in humans
It is found that whereas this kind of generalization did occur with some traits, it appeared to depend on age, and conspicuously, it did not occur with (inner) facial traits.
Mate-Choice Copying in Single and Coupled Women: The Influence of Mate Acceptance and Mate Rejection Decisions of other Women
  • Yan Deng, Yong Zheng
  • Psychology
    Evolutionary psychology : an international journal of evolutionary approaches to psychology and behavior
  • 2015
It is found that both the single and coupled women showed mate-choice copying, but their response patterns differed; the significant effects for single women were dependent on a decrease in attractiveness ratings when they perceived the models' mate rejection, however, the significant findings for coupled women relied on an increase in attractiveness Ratings when they observed the Models' mate acceptance.
Nonindependent mate choice in humans
Mate choice copying is the most studied type of nonindependent mate choice, i.e. mate choice that is influenced by the choices of other same-sex conspecifics (usually females). In copying, the
Mate Quality Bias: Sex Differences in Humans
In mate choice copying, a male is more likely to be chosen by other females simply by being observed mating. A recent finding is that women are influenced in their assessments of men by the
Sperm competition risk affects male mate choice copying
Mate choice copying was mostly described as a strategy employed by females to assess the quality of potential mates, but also males can copy other males’ mate choice, and males seem to adjust their copying behavior strategically to the perceived risk of sperm competition.
Mate Choice Copying and Nonindependent Mate Choice: A Critical Review
The past two decades have witnessed an explosion of interest in nonindependent mate choice, i.e. female choice that is influenced by the choices of other females. This research has focused
Same-Sex Gaze Attraction Influences Mate-Choice Copying in Humans
Men and women's attention to partners varied with partner attractiveness and this gaze attraction influenced their subsequent mate choices, highlighting the prevalence of non-independent mate choice in humans and implicate social attention and reward circuitry in these decisions.
Evidence of Human Mate Copying
A variety of non-human females do not select male partners independently. Instead they favor males having previous associations with other females, a phenom- enon known as mate copying. This paper
Women’s Sensitivity to Men’s Past Relationships: Reliable Information Use for Mate-Choice Copying in Humans
Mate-choice copying is a phenomenon whereby females assess the mate quality of males based on the mating decisions of other females. Previous studies demonstrated that the presence of a partner
Mate Choice Copying in Humans: a Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis
The authors' results provide clarification for documented sex differences (or lack thereof) in human MCC and discuss the importance of method consistency in studies that transfer ideas from non-human to human behavioral studies, highlighting replication issues in the light of the publication crisis in psychological science.


Human mate choice and the wedding ring effect
This study tested one of the hypotheses, the so-called wedding ring effect—that women would prefer men who are already engaged or married—in a series of live interactions between men and women, and casts doubt on some simplified theories of human mate-choice copying.
The evolutionary consequences of mate copying on male traits
  • A. Agrawal
  • Biology
    Behavioral Ecology and Sociobiology
  • 2001
It is shown that mate copying can have diverse evolutionary consequences and that the type of selection generated by mate copying depends on the details of how females are influenced by the matings that they observe.
Reversal of female mate choice by copying in the guppy (Poecilia reticulata)
  • L. Dugatkin, J. Godin
  • Psychology, Biology
    Proceedings of the Royal Society of London. Series B: Biological Sciences
  • 1992
First direct evidence that a female’s preference for a particular male can in fact be reversed by social cues is reported, providing strong evidence for the role of non-genetic factors in sexual selection and underlie the need for new models of sexual selection that explicitly incorporate both genetic and cultural aspects of mate choice.
Resources, attractiveness, family commitment; reproductive decisions in human mate choice.
It was found that men preferred younger mates, while women preferred older ones and both males and females employed "trade-off" strategies, making greater demands if they felt they had attractive offers.
Conditional Mate Choice Strategies in Humans: Evidence from ‘Lonely Hearts’ Advertisements
Advertisements from 'Lonely Hearts' columns in four US newspapers are used to test hypotheses about mate preferences by male and female humans. We first confirm conventional findings that, in
The evolution of human mating: Trade-offs and strategic pluralism
During human evolutionary history, there were “trade-offs” between expending time and energy on child-rearing and mating, so both men and women evolved conditional mating strategies guided by cues
Testosterone increases perceived dominance but not attractiveness in human males
The authors' data indicate that high testosterone faces reveal dominance, and there is no evidence of directional selection for increased (or decreased) testosterone in terms of attractiveness to the opposite sex, contrary to predictions.
Strategies of Human Mating
Empirical evidence is presented supporting evolution-based hypotheses about the complexities of the mating strategies of modern humans, including selecting a fertile mate, out-competing same-sex rivals in attracting a mate, fending off mate poaching, and engaging in all of the necessarily sexual and social behaviors required for successful conception to take place.