Are narcissists actually more attractive?

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Is narcissism related to observer-rated attractiveness? Two views imply that narcissism is unrelated to attractiveness: positive illusions theory and Feingold’s (1992) attractiveness theory (i.e., attractiveness is unrelated to personality in general). In contrast, two other views imply that narcissism is positively related to attractiveness: an evolutionary perspective on narcissism (i.e., selection pressures in short-term mating contexts shaped the evolution of narcissism, including greater selection for attractiveness in short-term versus long-term mating contexts) and, secondly, the self-regulatory processing model of narcissism (narcissists groom themselves to bolster grandiose self-images). A meta-analysis (N > 1000) reveals a small but reliable positive narcissism–attractiveness correlation that approaches the largest known personality–attractiveness correlations. The finding supports the evolutionary and self-regulatory views of narcissism.

Source: “Narcissism and attractiveness” from Journal of Research in Personality, Volume 44, Issue 1, February 2010, Pages 133-136

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