Your gaze fixation could indicate your amount of sexual interest in someone, mate – meaning men assess potential sexual partners visually, according to a new eye tracking study published in the Journal of Sex Research.

In the small study, men and women viewed images of both men and women in different age ranges, with researchers noting the length of time their eyes fixated on different body parts and analysing this in the context of results from their sexuality questionnaires. Researchers found that when viewing images of their preferred age group and gender, men’s gaze indicated their amount of sexual interest. The guys with stronger sexual tendencies, such as excitability, sexual risk taking and broader sexual experiences, fixed their gaze on the upper body and waist-hip region of female models for longer than images of any other group. On the other hand, women with stronger sexual tendencies expressed visual interest in the body of other females, suggesting comparison to their own.

Those with the lowest scores on the sexual interests scale viewed models’ faces longer than the rest of their body. Overall, men’s gaze was more indicative of sexual assessment than women’s.