It’s a common movie trope: the masculine alpha male swoops in to ‘steal’ someone’s partner away, tempting them to cheat.
According to new research, it’s not so far from the truth.
Men who have a traditionally masculine appearance are more likely to cheat on their partners or ‘poach’ another man’s partner, scientists have discovered.
A strong jaw, protruding forehead and thin lips are all features that those who cheat are most likely to have, according to the study published in the Royal Society Open Science journal.
For the study, 299 men and 452 women looked at images of men before rating how likely they thought these men were to be unfaithful.
The men in the photographs were also asked to self-report cheating or “poaching” behaviours.
Not only were men with more masculine qualities thought to be unfaithful, the perception also proved to be the reality based on their self-reported behaviour.
“Therefore, perceived unfaithfulness may indeed contain some kernel of trust in male faces,” said the researchers.
However, they stressed the findings should not prejudice people’s everyday dating habits.
“The small effects, however, also indicate that we should not rely on our first impressions to make diagnostic judgements of unfaithfulness in everyday situations.”
The same study looked at the relationship between women’s facial femininity and self-reported cheating behaviours – but found no correlation between the two.
If you don’t fancy picking your potential partner based on their facial features, it’s also been said star signs can predict someone’s likelihood to cheat.
Additionally, having a tattoo also makes a person more likely to cheat, according to one poll.