Fast Company

Infographic of the Day: The Brains vs. Beauty Quandry

Everyone understands the various categories displayed in this Venn diagram.

Mental Attractiveness and Physical Attractiveness

In hunting for a partner or a fling, we all known the trade-offs between beauty and brains. But we've never before seen a chart that so accurately describes the trials and tribulations of meeting someone worth dating.

Not a whole lot to say about this one--just check it out. (We recognize that even creating a chart to map these sorts of things--and listing attractiveness on an axis--presupposes a very male way of looking at things.)

But there are some interesting scientific data points in the brains vs. beauty quandary. Men really do prefer women with curves. In turn, curvy women are both more fertile, and tend to be smarter (and produce smarter kids). So among women, sexual selection does seem to be giving men what they want.

Women, meanwhile, tend to be attracted to more masculine men when fertile, and more feminine men when not. More masculine looking men tend to get that way because of higher testosterone levels--which in turn makes their sperm more viable. More feminine looking men are, at the very least, perceived to be more caring. So women, in turn, appear to have varying preferences, suited to finding both the best genes--and the man who'll take the best care of their kids.

[Via the very appropriately titled Chart Porn]

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