Is love all about resemblance? This Australian study confirms it!


It’s often said that opposites attract, but is this really the case? A recent study by researchers at the University of Queensland in Australia suggests not. According to them, we are more attracted to people who resemble us physically, and who share our ethnic background. This tendency to choose partners similar to ourselves would confirm the popular adage “those who look alike, come together”.

A revealing speed dating experiment

To reach this conclusion, the researchers organized speed dating sessions with 682 heterosexual participants, who were given 3 minutes to interact with each person of the opposite sex. They then assessed the facial attractiveness and personality of their interlocutor. The researchers also analyzed the participants’ facial images to measure their degree of geometric similarity.

The results showed that participants were more attracted to partners who had a face close to their own, and who belonged to the same ethnic group as them. The researchers explain that similar faces elicit a sense of kinship, making people more comfortable, more familiar and more inclined to choose people who look like them for their love life.

A social and cultural phenomenon

This preference for similar partners is not surprising, say the researchers, as it reflects a well-known social and cultural phenomenon: endogamy and homogamy. Endogamy refers to marrying or reproducing within the same social group, while homogamy refers to marrying or reproducing with a person who has similar characteristics to oneself, such as age, level of education, religion and so on.

These phenomena are observed in many human societies, and have evolutionary advantages. Indeed, pairing up with someone who resembles us can increase the likelihood of passing on our genes to the next generation, and strengthen the cohesion of the social group. However, there are also disadvantages, such as the risk of genetic impoverishment or discrimination against people who are different.

Find your doppelganger to find love?

The Australian study tells us that we tend to pair up with people who physically resemble us. But does this mean we have to look for our doppelganger to find love?

Not necessarily. Researchers point out that physical attractiveness is not the only factor that comes into play when choosing a partner. Other elements, such as personality, values, interests or sense of humor, can also count (as I often explain in my many dating advices articles).

What’s more, there are exceptions to the rule. Some people can be attracted to people very different from themselves, and form happy, harmonious couples. Love isn’t an exact science, and it can sometimes surprise us.

Nevertheless, I could add to my advice on how to find love, the criterion of looking for a person who resembles you physically.

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