Online Daters Find You More Attractive If Previous Profile Was Appealing

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Creating an online dating profile can often be a time consuming process, with many singles going to great lengths to take the perfect photos of themselves and honing every inch of their profile.

However, a new study has revealed that the success of a person’s dating profile is also determined by something they can’t control – the profiles that appear before you in a swiping sequence.

The research, published in Nature’s Scientific Reports by Dr. Jessica Taubert and colleagues at the School of Psychology, University of Sydney, found that people are more likely to think of someone as attractive if they also thought the person before was appealing.

It also states that if someone did not find a person’s face attractive, they would be less likely to think that the next face in the photo sequence was good looking.

Speaking about the study, the authors said: “The experiments employ a rapid adaptation paradigm that has emerged recently in the perceptual sciences whereby subjects are asked to make quick judgements about a rapid sequence of randomly varying stimuli.

“This method has been used to show robust inter-trial adaptation in judgements of orientation and numerosity in vision, frequency in audition and perceptual synchrony between audiovisual signals.

“With regard to face stimuli, it has been reported that face identity shows inter-trial adaptation dependencies, as does face attractiveness.”

Screen Shot 2016-03-21 at 09.26.50These finding were discovered when the researchers mimicked the swiping mechanism used by many popular dating platforms like Tinder, Bumble & Match.com, giving 32 female participants 60 male profile pictures from a dating site to rate.

The selection of photos contained a variety of looks, with some men dressed casually, some formally, and some containing an animal.

The images were then split into two halves, Set A and Set B, and sixteen female undergraduate students were asked to judge the attractiveness of the first 30 profile pictures, seeing each face ten times in a random order.

After completing the first test and collating the results, researchers were able to conclude that their judgements were strongly influenced by the attractiveness of the preceding face.

The second experiment took a similar shape, using the same images and a group of 16 female participants, however this time, participants viewed the images from various angles – upright and inverted.

The authors found no evidence of a correlation between upright and inverted attractiveness scores.

The authors added: “The current experiments will test this using a simple dichotomous task, and will do so with the well-controlled face stimuli typically used in laboratory studies of face perception replaced by non-standardised real-world profile pictures downloaded from the public domain.

“Our findings show that a binary attractiveness rating of a given face is strongly biased by the face seen immediately prior.

“In short, if the face you just saw was attractive, you are more likely to judge the current one as attractive, and vice versa.”

Check out the full study here.