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How often men approach women in relation to the size of their breasts
The results of this study should not be surprising, and one might think it remarkable that some researcher would spend time documenting this, but hard evidence that feminists have been unfairly blaming patriarchy, yet again, is welcome.
This is a French study. Nicolas Gueguen(1, pdf) selected a 20-year-old woman that was rated as having average physical attractiveness by 15 young men. She weighed 123.45 pounds at a height of 5-foot-6, had a waist-to-hip ratio of 0.71 and A-cup breasts. With the help of padding, her bust could be increased to a B-cup (average for young French women) and a C-cup. Her task was to be in a nightclub and the pavement area of a bar on separate occasions with different bust sizes and in the same clothing each time. Her clothes comprised of jeans, light-colored sneakers and a white figure-hugging sweatshirt that highlighted her bust. She was instructed not to gaze at or to smile at men in the nightclub or in the bar, and her behavior was similar across the trials. The number of men who approached her was recorded (Table 1).
Table 1. Number of men’s approaches according to the experimental bust-size conditions.
Number of times approached by men
Bra cup size
Experiment 1 – Nightclub (3 one-hour observation periods in each experimental condition)
Experiment 2 – Pavement area of a bar (7 one-hour observation periods in each experimental condition)
So when many women desire larger breasts and sometimes get breast implants, is patriarchy to blame or is it that women realize what would work to their advantage, i.e., the greater the number of men who approach them, the more selective they can be?
The results of this study are consistent with expectation and some other studies, but Gueguen cited one study where men rated women’s bodies in side view and found smaller breasts more appealing. This may have resulted from the sampling. For instance, the larger breasts could be excessively large or if the women with larger breasts in this study had sagging breasts, then it is understandable that men would prefer smaller and perkier breasts. I will look up this study and comment later. At least in the present study, since the increased bust size was achieved via padding, there was no sag for sure and a C-cup is not very large (In English women, a C-cup is the average bra size).
As a side note, Nicolas Gueguen mentioned, “A WHR of 0.70 seems to be the best value for high attractiveness (Singh, 2002),” but it has been discussed before that this is not true.
- Gueguen, N., Women's bust size and men's courtship solicitation, Body Image, 4, 386 (2007), doi:10.1016/j.bodyim.2007.06.006.