Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Effects of Pheromones and Sexual Orientation on Sexual Attraction in Females
by Protti, Tracy Anna, M.S., University of Louisiana at Lafayette, 2015, 117; 10003750
Abstract (Summary)

This study examined the effect of sweat exposure on sexual attraction in heterosexual and homosexual women. Strictly heterosexual and homosexual female participants were exposed to underarm pads containing sweat. Samples were collected during the Stimulus Preparation Phase from healthy, strictly heterosexual men and women. Women’s samples were collected on Day-14 and Day-27 of cycle, and men’s from any two days.

In the Stimulus Exposure Phase, the male sweat and Day-14 female sweat samples were the experimental conditions, and the no male sweat and Day-27 female sweat were the controls. During the exposure phase, sweat samples were hidden and participants completed two computer tasks. First, the key-press task had participants view or skip male and female photographs. Second, the rating-task had participants rate attractiveness of the male and female photographs. The ratings and viewing times were collected then analyzed.

Heterosexual women showed a strong preference for male photos over female photos only when exposed to male sweat. They also preferred female photos less than homosexual women when exposed to male sweat or Day-14 female sweat. Homosexual women showed a strong preference for female photos over male photos when exposed to male or female Day-14 sweat.

Homosexual women also preferred female photos more than heterosexual women when exposed to male sweat or Day-14 female sweat.

The findings of this study suggest that exposure to male sweat may enhance heterosexual women’s preference for men and exposure to female sweat from the ovulatory period of the menstrual cycle may inhibit the preference for women of heterosexual women. However, exposure to male sweat and female sweat from the ovulatory period may enhance the preference for women in homosexual women.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Lynch, Cheryl S.
Commitee: Cech, Claude, Smith, Theodore S.
School: University of Louisiana at Lafayette
Department: Psychology
School Location: United States -- Louisiana
Source: MAI 55/03M(E), Masters Abstracts International
Source Type: DISSERTATION
Subjects: Behavioral Sciences, Physiological psychology
Keywords: Human sweat, Humans, Menstrual cycle, Pheromones, Sexual attraction
Publication Number: 10003750
ISBN: 978-1-339-42860-4
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