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STUDY: Your Face Gives Away Whether You’re A Top Or Bottom

brokebackAccording to that drunk drag queen at the end of the bar a study from the Archives of Sexual Behavior, stereotypes exist for a reason.

The report, Accurate Identification of a Preference for Insertive Versus Receptive Intercourse from Static Facial Cues of Gay Men, claims “naïve observers” (straight strangers?) can correctly identify the top or bottom in a gay male relationship based on facial features and “perceived masculinity”:

In intercourse between men, one of the partners typically assumes the role of an insertive partner (top) while the other assumes a receptive role (bottom). Although some research suggests that the perceptions of potential partners’ sexual roles in gay men’s relationships can affect whether a man will adopt the role of top or bottom during sexual intercourse, it remains unclear whether sexual roles could be perceived accurately by naïve observers.

In Study 1, we found that naïve observers were able to discern men’s sexual roles from photos of their faces with accuracy that was significantly greater than chance guessing. Moreover, in Study 2, we determined that the relationship between men’s perceived and actual sexual roles was mediated by perceived masculinity. Together, these results suggest that people rely on perceptions of characteristics relevant to stereotypical male–female gender roles and heterosexual relationships to accurately infer sexual roles in same-sex relationships.

Thus, same-sex relationships and sexual behavior may be perceptually framed, understood, and possibly structured in ways similar to stereotypes about opposite-sex relationships, suggesting that people may rely on these inferences to form accurate perceptions.

So does this mean that versatile guys are two-faced?

On:           Apr 9, 2013
Tagged: , , ,
    • DickGreenleaf

      Have these people never heard of “bossy bottoms”?

      Apr 9, 2013 at 7:20 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • yaoming

      I’m calling BS.

      Apr 9, 2013 at 7:43 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Chris-MI

      I always figured being a bottom had something to do with how your prostrate was wired. Now I see that is mysteriously caused by gay face. Huh.

      Apr 9, 2013 at 8:13 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • hf2hvit

      @Chris-MI: “PROSTRATE”?!?! REALLY?!?! Are you some ignorant straight guy. Use a dictionary…or GOOGLE. THere’s a huge difference between “PROSTRATE” and “PROSTATE”…

      If you’re going to stroke it, at least know what it is…

      Apr 9, 2013 at 9:23 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • knoxxy2008

      LOL thats BS.

      Apr 9, 2013 at 10:00 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • the other Greg

      I’m surprised you’re all so dubious about this. Anyone who came out back in the bar days, before (anti) social media, knows there’s something to this. Most guys could somehow “tell” what the others were into, just by visual cues. Everyone managed to hook up without much verbal interrogation, never mind a lengthy typed questionnaire. It may be difficult to define such things in plain language, but they are real enough. Apparently a natural emotional process like this seems mysterious and arcane to anyone who’s used to spelling everything out explicitly online?

      @hf2hvit: That’s an easy mistake, since stimulating your prostate tends to be more fun when you’re prostrate!

      Apr 9, 2013 at 10:20 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • TinoTurner

      I had the worlds biggest crush on this guy in DC when I lived there. One day, he asks me out, we begin dating and taking things slow. He came across as a tough guy/macho/uber masculine. We eventually get in bed and he lays there like a total corpse just begging to be banged like a little woman…it was totally a turn off.

      Apr 9, 2013 at 10:20 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • southsam7

      What if you’re neither top nor bottom? Stupid study.

      Apr 9, 2013 at 10:47 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • tdx3fan

      I would definitely have to say that is is over generalization. This might apply to their sample, but there is no way this can be generalized to the entire population. Naturally occurring relationships just have way to many variables to be this simplistic. Also, there is no mention of the truly versatile person that switches roles constantly depending on who their partner is or what they feel like that day.

      Apr 9, 2013 at 10:51 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • John

      I wonder how this study aligns with other studies showing that most gay men are actually vers and 1 in 5 of them don’t have anal sex? If you’re only sampling self-professed total tops and bottoms then obviously you’re not taking a representative sample of the gay population, since they’re a minority. Though I’m sure no gay man would EVER lie about his preference; oh no, us gay men know that that NEVER happens. Rather, we all try to emulate straight people because it is our dream to live heteronormative lives based on the stereotypes created for us by straight people. You can tell from the comment section just how much us gay people can relate to that sentiment in our personal lives. Clearly they nailed it.

      Apr 9, 2013 at 10:52 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • tdx3fan

      @the other Greg: Personal experience is not a basis for actual science. In your knowledge, everyone knew what everyone was into because you claim you knew what everyone was into… except for all those times that you were wrong that you probably do not remember as well as the times you thought you were right. Even then, you might not have actually been right and the guy just played along because he was into you. Sexuality (bottom/top, gay/straight/bi, etc.) is fluid and always changing.

      Apr 9, 2013 at 10:54 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • the other Greg

      @TinoTurner: He was breaking the social convention. He may even have been borderline autistic (not that there’s anything wrong with that). When in doubt, grope!

      @southsam7: Well when you meet someone the first time, you’re probably going to be one or the other, at least that one time? And you &/or the other guy can often “tell” somehow, without either of you tediously explaining it. It’s not rocket science.

      Apr 9, 2013 at 11:05 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • the other Greg

      @tdx3fan: hmm.. you’re definitely on to something, I’ll think about that.

      Apr 9, 2013 at 11:12 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • rcs831

      @hf2hvit: I dated a bafoon years ago that always called it a prostrate. I was like, “Really? are you that dumb?” He also used to call small figured women ‘pateak’. I think he meant petite. He was so stupid but his IQ was the same as his cock length.

      Apr 9, 2013 at 11:42 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • jwrappaport

      @TinoTurner: We clearly have radically different notions of the concept of “turn-off.” jaja

      Apr 9, 2013 at 12:09 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • DonW

      Hmm. I consider myself vers but I sure love to bottom. And yet it’s almost always bottoms who come on to me, and I dutifully bang them. Maybe I need plastic surgery so my face reads more accurately.

      Apr 9, 2013 at 12:11 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Spike

      Wow, brilliant study, basically confirms that str8ts project masculine/feminine stereotypes. on gay males, who knew???

      Apr 9, 2013 at 12:45 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Cam

      How about Tops nails are shorter but bottoms look better?

      Apr 9, 2013 at 1:02 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • seaki

      Study is bogus, SOMEONE has NOT heard of *bears & cubs. Typical, straight folks TRYING their hardest to figure us out and place us in neat, little labels! SORRY its NOt going to happen. We are men, and make love to who we want,….and many times that just depends on the MOMENT, chemistry, alcohol,etc. Give it up Straight-ees!

      Apr 9, 2013 at 2:49 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Polaro

      Anal sex is over-rated. Just my opinion, mind you.

      Apr 9, 2013 at 2:58 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • southsam7

      @the other Greg: I don’t have anal sex but I identify as gay so what about that?

      Apr 9, 2013 at 3:12 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • hyhybt

      As with many other things, a generalization is fine until you take it too seriously and insist everybody fit it.

      Apr 9, 2013 at 3:18 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·

      Wow, what a bunch of BS. I’m a versatile gay man and this study isn’t real…

      Apr 9, 2013 at 3:22 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • B Damion

      I love being a bottom.

      A lot of bottoms fail to realize that they have all the power in the relationship. I get lunch delivered to me at work, when I complain I usually get my way in most disagreements.

      I get what I want in the bedroom and then he gets what he wants. My man is trained. Yes..sure he can be a stubborn Taurus..but you just have to break that bull in..wink..wink!

      Apr 9, 2013 at 3:46 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Vallin

      Can they tell a switch-bitch on sight? (I’m ve-ry ver-sa-tile…)

      Apr 9, 2013 at 3:53 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Studcubmike

      Seriously this has no bearing on anything. Yeah some guys look like tops, some look like bottoms, but you never know until you get them in bed. Even then things may turn out different depending on vibe. But I guess most guys tend to lean significantly one way or the other, but facial recognition of that is lame. Let’s go back to the hanky code of the old days that let you know what was expected, wanted, and appreciated. Yeah I know old school.

      Apr 9, 2013 at 5:08 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • EvonCook

      Want to make a longer comment about all this BS later when I have more time. Love the comments so far. But I just want to thank you for the very beautiful photo that starts this off. Those are two beautiful and sensitive men, and pretty brave actors in a still homophobic Hollywood, even if the story was ultimately a really sad one.

      Apr 9, 2013 at 5:16 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • southsam7

      @Studcubmike: yes hanky code

      Apr 9, 2013 at 6:22 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • dc.196434

      in my 28 yr relationship there is no such thing as a top or bottom- its called whoever is in the mood for what. My spouse is one of the most masculine men you will meet- no one even know he is gay- but lets face it – even he loves when i pound him a good one.

      Apr 9, 2013 at 7:03 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Eric Auerbach

      You can totally tell who’s a bottom and who’s a top. You guys are bad at being gay.

      Apr 9, 2013 at 7:04 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • dc.196434

      @TinoTurner: how could that be a turn off- i would have nailed him hard.

      Apr 9, 2013 at 7:05 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • hyhybt

      @Eric Auerbach: Is that why certain people like to go on about “practicing homosexuals?”

      Apr 9, 2013 at 7:11 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Eric Auerbach

      @hyhybt: Exactly. Practice makes perfect.

      Apr 9, 2013 at 7:15 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • JustinMar

      28 YEARS?!!?! Congrats to you two!! I’m on year 3 and I cant imagine being with my man for another day and also can imagine life without him. It’s sick.

      Apr 9, 2013 at 9:03 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Caleb in SC

      @Eric Auerbach: No, practice makes pervert.

      Apr 10, 2013 at 6:51 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • mike1988

      Hard to believe that this study was actually accepted by a peer reviewed psychology journal.

      Apr 10, 2013 at 9:43 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • ecllips

      @tdx3fan: Sexuality is not always fluid and changing. Sorry to burst your bubble. Some people like to play around a bit between thing but that isn’t everyone’s style. I for one know that my sexuality hasn’t changed and I do not see it ever changing.

      Apr 11, 2013 at 6:50 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·

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