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Hot Guys and Bad Decisions: Male Attractiveness and Women’s Judgments of Sexual Risk

Do hot guys lead women to make risky sexual choices? To test this, college women rated 40 pictures of college-aged males for attractiveness, willingness to have sex with him with a condom, willingness to have sex without a condom, and his likelihood of having a sexually transmitted infection (STI). When women were willing to have sex with a guy with a condom, they were also willing to have unprotected sex with him. Women were also more willing to have unprotected sex with physically attractive males, but also rated them as more likely to have an STI—a potentially dangerous combination.

Lennon, C. A., & Kenny, D. A., (2013). The role of men’s physical attractiveness in women’s perceptions of sexual risk: Danger or allure? Journal of Health Psychology, 18, 1166-1176. image source: madamenoire.com

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