I found some papers on the variance of male preference for "feminine" women faces:
- "Men report stronger attraction to femininity in women's faces when their testosterone levels are high"
- "Men’s Preferences for Female Facial Femininity Decline With Age"
The latter is not terribly surprising given that testosterone level declines with age.
In case one wonders, the latter paper also gives a brief description how the facial "femininity" is operationalized in terms of
facial features such as higher cheekbones, a rounder forehead, smaller chin and nose, and rounder eyes (Farkas, 1987). The aggregate differences between women and men in this combination of facial features are often referred to as “facial femininity” (Little et al., 2011)
Probably the most interesting paper (that I found) in this line of research has these elaborate findings:
preference for feminine faces was not only influenced by sibling age and sex, but also [...] fatherhood modulated this preference. Men with sisters had a weaker preference for femininity than men with brothers, highlighting a possible effect of a negative imprinting-like mechanism. What is more, fatherhood increased strongly the preference for facial femininity. Finally, for fathers with younger sisters only, the more the age difference increased between them, the more femininity preference increased.
Also there's a Western-culture association with the preference.
After glancing at those papers, I have some "obvious" questions:
- is this preference also affected by bisexual orientation, i.e. do bisexual men report a less strong preference for "feminine" women faces?
- is this preference also affected by dominance/submission-preference in a BDSM-type relationship?
(Yeah, asking two questions in one is somewhat frowned upon, but these seem related enough and a review paper might answer them both.)