Individual differences in pathogen disgust predict men's, but not women's, preferences for facial cues of weight

Claire I. Fisher, Corey L. Fincher, Amanda C. Hahn, Lisa M. DeBruine, Benedict C. Jones

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)


Previous research suggests that people who score higher on measures of pathogen disgust demonstrate (1) stronger preferences for healthy individuals when assessing their facial attractiveness and (2) stronger negative attitudes about obese individuals. The relationship between pathogen disgust and attractiveness judgments of faces differing in cues of weight has yet to be investigated, however. Here we found that men's, but not women's, pathogen disgust was positively correlated with their preference for facial cues of lower weight. Moreover, this effect of pathogen disgust was independent of the possible effects of moral and sexual disgust. These data implicate pathogen disgust in individual differences in preferences for facial cues of weight, at least among men, and suggest that the sex-specific effects of pathogen disgust on preferences for facial cues of weight may be different to those previously reported for general negative attitudes about obese individuals.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)860-863
Number of pages4
JournalPersonality and Individual Differences
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2013


  • adiposity
  • attractiveness
  • disgust
  • health
  • pathogens
  • weight

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