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Circum-menopausal changes in women's preferences for sexually dimorphic shape cues in peer-aged faces

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Abstract

Recent studies suggest that post-menopausal women demonstrate stronger preferences for feminine characteristics in male and female faces than do pre-menopausal women, potentially reflecting stronger preferences for healthy men and greater derogation of attractive women among more fertile women. A limitation of this work was that it assessed circum-menopausal women's face preferences using images of young adults only. Here, we found that post-menopausal women demonstrated stronger preferences for feminine characteristics in male and female peer-aged faces that did pre-menopausal women. These data present novel evidence for circum-menopausal variation in face perception and confirm that the circum-menopausal variation in face preferences observed previously was not an artefact of the young faces employed as stimuli.

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