21 Sep, 2014 @ 08:30
1 min read

‘Pretty boys’ have stronger sperm than ‘macho men’ says Spanish research

SPANISH scientists have discovered that macho looks don’t necessarily mean macho sperm.

In fact, men with square jaws, strong cheekbones and wider faces tend to have poorer-quality sperm than their more feminine-featured companions, according to a new study.

Research conducted at the University of Valencia concluded that high levels of the male sex hormone testosterone actually impede sperm production.

Scientists from Spain, Australia and Colombia joined forces to analyse the semen of 50 Caucasian students, then took photos of the men and scored them on seven ‘facial masculinity factors’ including cheekbone and nostril width.

They then explored whether there was a link between any of the masculinity indicators and the quality of the men’s sperm.

However, there is still hope for good-looking men, as men rated ‘attractive’ by both sexes – as opposed to macho – have better-quality sperm than those rated ‘less attractive’, according to the study.

Experts have put forward the theory that there is a ‘trade off’ in which alpha males – the macho men – can see off the lesser males but are unable compete on the virility front.

Because masculine men can attract more women – according to evolution – they don’t need such high-quality sperm, whereas a man who attracts fewer women needs to maximise his chances.

Wider faces have also been linked with character traits such as aggressiveness, dominance and deceptiveness, as well as physical strength, status and financial success.

Previous studies have also found that men with deeper voices also have lower sperm counts.

Imogen Calderwood

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