Monday, November 15, 2010
by: David Gutierrez, staff writer
Ovulation-related changes in hormone levels may actually produce changes in women’s shopping habits, according to a study conducted by researchers from the University of Minnesota and published in the Journal of Consumer Research.
The researchers showed 100 women pictures of attractive women living either nearby or far away, then asked the participants to pick out clothes and accessories that they would like to buy. They found that among women who were ovulating, being shown pictures of attractive local women led to a preference for clingier, “sexier” clothing.
The researchers believe that women respond to perceived competition from other women by trying to make themselves more appealing to men.
“The desire for women at peak fertility to unconsciously choose products that enhance appearance is driven by a desire to outdo attractive rival women,” lead researcher Kristina Durante said. “If you look more desirable than your competition, you are more likely to stand out.”