Scientists said although men have the same ability to resist temptation as women, this is overriden more often because men have stronger desires.
One of their two studies got participants to report on their impulses when they encountered a real-life tempting - but forbidden - potential partner.
It featured 218 Americans - 70 of whom were men, and the other 148 women, aged 32 on average, reported Pacific Standard magazine.
The other study asked participants to perform a reaction-time task on computers in which they chose to accept or reject potential partners.
The Texas-based researchers then used a technique known as process dissociation to separate the effects of impulse and control.
This second study featured 600 undergraduates - 326 of whom were men, and 274 women - who played the 'partner selection game'.
‘In both studies, men succumbed to the sexual temptations more than women,’ the researchers said.
‘And this sex difference emerged because men experienced stronger impulses, not because they exerted less intentional control.’
The research was led by Natasha Tidwell of Texas A&M University in College Station and Paul Eastwick of the University of Texas at Austin.
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It was published in the latest Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin.