The subject of men and cheating is the backbone of many magazines and websites. There’s no clear way to know what makes someone cheat and what doesn’t because, sadly, life can’t be so easily reduced. But there is a study that claims that men who wear a particular item of clothing are more likely to cheat, so take that as you will.
In the study, published in the journal Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, researchers found that men who wear flashy shirts emblazoned with big, pricey logos are less “trustworthy” and more likely to be “promiscuous,” surprising no one. According to the study, the more muted the shirt, the more trustworthy the person.
The journal explains the origins of the study, which is based on the evolutionary theory that suggests women seek men who have resources. In today’s world, wealth, which can be expressed through clothing, is one of these resources. It’s not a foolproof theory, but it is one that has inspired several studies like this one and is used as reference for many other social theories.
The study was led by Dr. Daniel Kruger and was conducted by the University of Michigan, focusing on two models of shirts from the brand Ralph Lauren: one with a small logo and another with a larger one. Researchers then asked the men which shirt they preferred and the social situation in which they would wear it, whether that was a family gathering or a party where they could meet a potential partner. Men were then rated for their choices by other men and women.
“Luxury displays featuring exaggerated size, coloration, and sound may indicate relatively greater investment in mating effort,” said Kruger. “Large luxury product logos enhance social competitiveness and mate attraction, whereas small logos enhance perceptions of trustworthiness and reliability.”
Research concluded that men who own large logos appeared to be more invested in mating attraction than in becoming parents. They appeared to be more invested in short term relationships over long term. Men and women who voted for these results appeared to share the same opinions.
While wearing a different model of a polo shirt may seem like something simple and not very telling, the study reveals that the way in which people present themselves lend themselves to interpretation, and that display of luxury goods is associated with sketchy stuff. In short: don’t wear the polo with the big logo.