Scientists from the University of Rochester in New York may have quantified what many men have known for years, that a woman wearing red will turn a man's head more than other colors, reports Media. It may also explain why red is the hue most associated with love and romance in popular culture.
The study, published in the Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, tested 96 men from the United States and Austria and found that the men felt the women in red would respond positively to their advances, reports Richard Gray, Science Correspondent for The Telegraph.
Psychologists behind the research claim the color red carries subtle but powerful messages about how receptive a woman might be to romantic advances and so men find it more alluring and that this response to red probably stems from biological instincts rather than simply social perception of the vibrant color.
The researchers also showed that nonhuman male primates are particularly attracted to females displaying red. For example female baboons and chimpanzees redden conspicuously when nearing ovulation, sending clear sexual signals intended to attract males.
The color is always popular for fashion shows and is regularly worn to star-studded events by the world's most attractive female celebrities.
Social psychologist Adam Pazda led the research along with colleagues at the University of Innsbruck and claims, “we find it fascinating that merely changing the color of a woman's shirt can have such a strong influence on how she is perceived by men."
“It is possible that women actually wear red clothing more when they are interested in sexual encounters. We are currently investigating this possibility, and preliminary evidence suggests that this is indeed happening."
Mr. Pazda added, “From a pragmatic standpoint, our results suggest that women may need to be judicious in their use of red clothing. More generally, our finding that female red carries sexual meaning will likely be of considerable interest to fashion designers, marketers, and advertisers."