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Want to know if they fancy you? Pay extra special attention to this...

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Emily Reynolds
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Want to know if someone likes you? Listen to their voice

You might be thinking that the best way to work out whether someone fancies you is to listen to what they’re saying to you.

But new research suggests that it might not be the full picture – and that listening to how they’re saying it could be the clue to knowing whether or not you’re the object of someone’s affections. 

Research from the University of Sussex, published in journal The Royal Society Proceedings B, found that people tend to lower their pitch when they’re with someone they find attractive – a “subtle, subconscious sign” that developed as an evolutionary tool to attract a partner.

Researchers listened to 30 speed daters, each attending six-minute long dates. 

As on a normal speed dating night, daters were then asked to rate their dates, selecting whether or not they’d want to meet again. 

And when the team compared the pitch of the daters’ voices with their list of who they fancied, they found that both men and women lowered their voices when speaking to them. 

Men also tended to lower their voices when speaking to desirable women, even if they didn’t fancy her themselves. Women only tended to lower their voices with men they directly fancied.

Lead author Katarzyna Pisanski said she was “a little bit surprised” that women also lowered their pitch if they liked a man.

“Quite a few studies have shown men tend to favour a higher pitch in women because it is feminine and youthful, while women tend to like men to have deeper voices that are seen as more masculine and linked to testosterone,” she said. 

“Perhaps things are changing and women are trying to portray other values when they use a lower pitch.

“It might communicate competence, maturity or even dominance.”

So next time you’re not sure how well a date’s going? Just listen to their voice – it could give you a clue. 

Images: Getty / Unsplash

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Emily Reynolds

Emily Reynolds is a journalist and author based in London. Her first book, A Beginner’s Guide to Losing Your Mind, came out in February 2017 with Hodder & Stoughton. She is currently working on her second.  

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