Whatever magazines and advice columnists soothingly claim, women do care about the size of a man's penis, according to new research from Australia.
Scientists at the University of Canberra say the average length of the human male member is much larger than evolution would naturally demand for breeding purposes. And they posit that it grew over the eons to reflect the preference of women for a longer penis in potential mates.
Before homo sapien males started wearing clothing, their genitals would have been easily spotted by potential female partners, said researcher Brian Mautz.
So there would be no need for the penis to grow in size — apart from the fact that over the years, men with a heftier package had more luck in attracting women, he added.
"We found that male attractiveness is significantly influenced by penis size. More specifically, we found that large penises are rated as relatively more attractive than smaller ones,” he said.
Twenty first-century women show the same preference, his team concluded. They showed images of naked men to 100 Australian women, altering the length of the penis. The women showed a marked preference for the images where men were better endowed.
Other factors, such as having wider shoulders or hips, increased male attractiveness.
And tall men with wide shoulders and an impressive offering in the underwear department were most attractive of all, they added.