When you’re sitting at a restaurant or cafe with a new guy that you’re super into, it’s natural to be nervous about whether or not he feels the same. Unfortunately, unless he comes straight out and tells you how much he likes you, it can be hard to tell—unless you start looking out for this subtle and important sign of attraction.
It’s all about the voice. A new study published in The Royal Society Proceedings B studied 30 speed daters who met at a cafe. Men moved around each of the tables, meeting the other women for six minutes each. Between every date, both the men and women said whether or not they were into the person and would want to see them again. Those who rated each other highest tended to have the lowest pitch to their voices. Whaaaat?
It’s an evolutionary thing. Researchers believe that when we like someone, we automatically lower the tone of our voices to seem huskier and therefore a bit sexier. That makes sense. After all, a deeper voice can often seem sultrier or more mysterious, and who doesn’t love a bit of mystery?
It’s also about competition. The study revealed that men spoke in lower voices to women that other men found attractive, even if they themselves weren’t into the woman in question and weren’t interested in pursuing things with her. On the other hand, women only lowered their voices for guys they were actually into, even if other women rated the men highly.
Women are speaking lower in general these days. In a separate study, researchers at the University of South Australia says that our pitch is lower than our grandmothers’ and even our mothers’, which could “communicate competence, maturity or even dominance.” Super interesting and makes a lot of sense, if you think about it.
So the next time you’re on a date and wondering if the person sitting across from you (or beside you, if that’s your thing) is feeling you like you are them, listen to the pitch of their voice. It’ll tell you everything you need to know—well, almost everything…
[H/T BBC News]
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