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Third, in extreme cases women may guard against potential competitors by means of social exclusion.
If a new attractive woman shows up in the neighborhood (or school, or club), all the women in attendance may turn their backs on her, compelling her to withdraw from the scene, thus increasing their own chances with the surrounding males.
A central arena for competition between females is sexual behavior itself.
Studies show that women tend to criticize and reject other women who are viewed by them as sexually promiscuous.
The researchers tracked participants’ responses to the assistant during the meeting and after she left the room.A number of recent studies provide further support for the existence of the 'female competition' phenomenon.For example, Jon Maner and James Mc Nulty of Florida State discovered that women's testosterone levels went up when they (unknowingly) smelled t-shirts of ovulating young women, presumably in preparation for aggressive competition.According to the researchers, this is because women want to guard their partners and because they fear socal stigma: if you go around with someone who’s known to be promiscuous (a “slut”), there is danger that the label will latch on to you, too.
This study and others align with the observation that women are often the chief enforcers of strict and sometimes cruel norms of female appearance and sexual behavior.
Canadian researchers Tracy Vaillancourt and Aanchal Sharma, showed how women judge and condemn each other based on appearance.