|NEW YORK: The secret of attractiveness is all in a tilt of the head, according to a new scientific study.|
The research shows that men and women can make themselves more appealing to the opposite sex by changing the way they angle their face.
Women are more alluring if they angle their head forwards so they have to look slightly upwards.
In contrast, men become more masculine if they tilt their head back a bit and look slightly down their nose, according to scientists.
It is believed this difference is down to the usual height differences between men and women.
By tilting his head backwards, a man is mimicking the angle a shorter woman would view him from.
When a woman tilts her head forwards she is recreating the way a taller man would see her.
Dr Darren Burke and Dr Danielle Sulikowski are the husband and wife team behind the research.
Dr Burke, a senior psychology lecturer at the University of Newcastle, Australia, said: "Human facial attractiveness from an evolutionary perspective has been extensively studied.
"But, although the influence of feminine and masculine features is relatively well known there is a gap in our knowledge as to what is considered masculine and feminine about facial features.
"We investigated whether looking at a face from different perspectives as a result of the height differences between men and women influenced perceived masculinity or femininity.
"The research found the way we angle our faces affects our attractiveness to the opposite sex."
The research used computer-generated, three-dimensional models of male and female faces.
As they were tilted up and down in five different positions, participants rated each face for attractiveness and also masculinity and femininity.
Dr Sulikowski said the findings offer some clues to help unravel 'the mysteries of mateship rituals'.
Further research is now planned to see if people sub-consciously tilt their faces when flirting.
She added: "From a scientific perspective, these findings contribute enormously to our understanding of the role of facial attractiveness in evolution,
"While the research provides important information about our evolution, the findings also offer some clues to help unravel the mysteries of mateship rituals in the 21st century.
"The next step is to determine if people use this effect in real-world mate-attraction scenarios."
The findings are published in the latest edition of the scientific journal Evolutionary Psychology.