Facial attractiveness as a function of athletic prowess
We investigate the relationship between facial attractiveness and athletic prowess. We study the connection between subjective facial attractiveness (measured on a 5-point scale of judged facial attractiveness) and athletes by gender and age of respondents. Five age classes were investigated in Studies 1–5: preadolescents (average age: 8.85 years: n = 92), adolescents (average age: 15.8 years; n = 82), young adults (average age: 21.6 years; n = 181), middle-aged adults (average age: 47.5 years; n = 189), and older adults (65 years old; n = 183). The findings show that world-class athletes are perceived as more facially attractive than amateur athletes, with women athletes perceived as more facially attractive than men, and these findings generally occur to a greater extent for female than male respondents. These findings hold for preadolescents, adolescents, young adults, and older adults. However, results were mixed for middle-aged adults where generally amateur athletes were evaluated more attractive than world-class and men athletes more attractive than women.