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Japan’s got an unabashed soft spot for beautiful people, with attractive models and celebrities used to promote everything from fashion lines to insurance packages. At the same time, the country also has a deep respect for financial stability and economic vigor.

Recently, fashion magazine AneCan pitted these two cultural values against each other by asking readers which guy they’d rather date, an ugly dude who’s flush with cash, or a hottie who doesn’t have a job?

The results of the survey of 1,000 women appears in the March edition of the magazine, published by Shogakukan. This issue marks the debut of a new regular column, titled Which Would you Choose?

For the very first question, AneCan asked its readers whether they’d rather have an ugly man with an annual income of 300 million yen (US $2.54 million) or a handsome man who’s unemployed as their boyfriend. Specifically, the unattractive man was referred to as busaiku, a term that usually denotes an unattractive face more so than an unappealing physique.

We’re guessing the aim of the Which Would You Choose? column is to present readers with a tough choice where both options have comparatively significant pros and cons. Since this is the first installment, though, it looks like they’re still ironing out some kinks in the topic selection system, because when the votes were tallied for these two theoretical beaus, the contest wasn’t close at all.

As shown in the pink section of the graph, 75.5 percent of respondents picked the financially successful yet visually unimpressive man as the more eligible bachelor. On the other side of the equation, just under a quarter of the women would apparently be happy to pay for dinner, as long as they could look at their boyfriend’s gorgeous face while they eat it.

While AneCan’s editors were probably expecting a more even split, online commenters were anything but surprised.

“It’s what on the inside that counts.”
“What’s on the inside = money!”
“Picking the rich one is obvious.”
“In the end, money is all that matters.”
“Yup, a guy better have money!”
“So it’s not the man, but his money that’s popular.”
“I’m a guy, but I’d make the same choice if they were women.”

It’s worth noting that the Ane portion of the publication’s name means “big sister,” and the magazine’s target demographic is women in their late 20s and early 30s. This puts them at an age when they’re no longer living off Mom and Dad’s dime (or 10-yen coin). Facing the realities of establishing their own household no doubt has them conscious of the way their romantic partner’s earning potential is going to affect their own lifestyle.

▼ Some people say “Mo’ money, mo’ problems.” Others say “Mo’ money, mo’ economic means with which to procure food, clothing, and shelter.”

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The result might have been very different had the survey been done by AneCan’s sister publication CanCam, whose readership skews younger by several years. AneCan’s readers, though, are likely to be a little more practical and mature. Or, in the case of this survey respondent, cunning:

“I’d use the rich one like an ATM and fool around behind his back with the unemployed guy.”

Hey, the question clearly states that you’re supposed to pick one of the two guys. Using one to secretly bankroll your fling with the other is cheating, in more ways than one.

Source: AneCam, Twitter
Top image: AneCan
Insert image: Girls Channel
[ Read in Japanese ]