Female attractiveness engenders honesty among men but dishonesty among women

Zeev Shtudiner, Erez Siniver, Yossef Tobol, Gideon Yaniv

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations

Abstract

We investigated the impact of one person's attractiveness on the moral behavior exhibited by others. In our experiment, subjects were invited to perform an inverse version of the die-under-the-cup (DUTC) task that incentivized underreporting of the actual die outcome. Participants provided self-reports after being presented with a facial photograph of a female. Men tended to behave more honestly when they perceived an image of a beautiful female face. Strikingly, women exhibited the opposite pattern of behavior, and experienced a beauty penalty toward attractive women. Individuals tended to act more dishonestly when presented with a highly attractive facial image than when presented with a less attractive image. Women's greater dishonesty in the presence of an attractive female face can thus be explained by the negative emotional priming of female jealousy and envy, which is related to social comparison theory.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)592-598
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Economic Behavior and Organization
Volume218
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 2024
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2024 Elsevier B.V.

Keywords

  • Beauty
  • Dishonesty
  • Experiment
  • Gender

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