Attraction is a weird concept. It’s hard to predict what’s going to turn a woman on. These days, there are so many terms for different things women are attracted to: there’s pognophiles (women who love beards), frat-boy fan-girls (pretty self-explanatory), even lumbersexuals (women that dig the lumber-jack look). Women can’t be pigeon-holed into some mathematical formula of attraction: they all have their own unique tastes in men. Who knows what that cute girl across the bar is into?
We may have some ideas. From a conducted survey of 21-30 year old women and research from a few different studies, we’ve found a few weird things that can catch a woman’s eye. Of course, nothing beats spontaneously making eye contact with the hot lady across the bar but let’s plan ahead so that, when you go to talk to her, she doesn’t change her mind.
Here’s 15 weird things that turn women on.
15. Men Who Smell Nice
We’re not talking about cologne: please don’t douse yourself in a bottle of Axe body spray before heading out for the night. On the other hand, we’re also not talking about relying on your natural smell too much: nothing will make a lady run away faster than the stench of a guy that hasn’t showered in too long.
We’re talking about pheromones (yes, SCIENCE). Women are very sensitive to pheromones and the right smell can get a girl interested before she even knows why, but not all pheromones are sexy. Androstenol is the pheromone released by fresh sweat and women are very attracted to this smell; however, androsteone is the pheromone released by sweat after prolonged exposure to oxygen (e.g., when you worked out and didn’t shower), and that’s not so sexy. Keep it fresh and clean, and you’ll keep her attention.
14. Nice Facial Hair
There was a study done showing how small changes in beard maintenance and grooming affected a man’s perceived attractiveness. Participants were shown a series of faces, each with varying levels of beards, and were asked to rate them on attractiveness. The results were interesting: heavy stubble and full beards were rated as more attractive when they were rare occurrences in the series. In other words, when a beard is a rarity, it’s an attractive feature. The same was true for clean shaven faces; when most faces were bearded, the clean shaven face was more attractive.
So what’s the solution? You can’t predict how many men with beards will show up at the bar tonight. The smartest solution is to lie somewhere in between: go with some well-maintained stubble. Or, if you want to go for the beard, keep it clean and maintained. One woman interviewed said, “Girls take hours to get ready to go out, good facial hair tells you that a guy took a second to think about how he looked for the night, too.”
13. Healthy Teeth and Big Smiles
No one likes Austin Powers’ teeth, but that’s the extreme of bad teeth. Oral health is important! It’s an age-old telltale sign of personal health: if your teeth are rotting, it’s a strong indicator that you’re probably gross in a lot of other ways. It’s not that hard to have an attractive smile: a grown man should have a good regimen for oral hygiene and, if you don’t, you need to get on top of that. Now.
One of the quickest ways to reel a woman in is by flashing her a genuine, sparkling smile! Forget trying to trick her by coming off as mysterious, brooding, or aloof: just smile at her! It’s a fact: a bright smile makes other people want to smile, and a happy woman is a woman that’s more likely to continue conversing with you.
12. Wide, Bright Eyes
We’re not saying you have to change anything about your biology and, goodness knows, we don’t want you wearing eye makeup (you think you’re being discreet with the eyeliner. You’re not). However you’re born is perfectly fine, all eyes can be sexy. But there are a few tips that can make your eyes pop when you’re speaking with a lady.
First off, maybe don’t smoke weed right before you go to the bar. You know your eyes are going to get bloodshot and droopy, and you know it won’t be attractive. So if you’re trying to pick up women, put down the joint.
Secondly, men frequently try to work the “smolder:” that half-closed stare that makes you look mysterious and dangerous? Yeah, don’t do that. Wide open eyes make men appear more vulnerable, and that’s not a bad thing! It makes women feel like they can trust you and your intentions.
11. Stylish Bags
A lot of guys have bags: some 50% of men carry bags on a regular basis. However, only 11% use them as fashion statements. Consider how many women carry purses: almost all of them, and most of them are attentive to the style and how it complements their outfits. Yet only 11% of male bag carriers consider how their accessory matches their attire? Come on guys, let’s put in a little effort.
A stylish bag can say a lot about a man. A modern executive briefcase says he’s business oriented and ambitious. A nice messenger bag says he’s an academe and lives a busy lifestyle. Your old, worn down backpack from college says you’re cheap and lazy. Consider what you want to communicate with your bag and get one that looks nice! It’s a bit of an investment, but it won’t go unnoticed.
10. Men Who Talk About Their Passions
A lot of guys try to censor themselves for fear of scaring a woman off when they talk too excitedly; they don’t want to “come on too strong.” But really, women want to know what you’re passionate about. Don’t censor your excitement, let it out! It can be nerve-racking being honest with a woman about things you’ve invested your heart and soul in, but that’s what’ll keep her interested in talking to you. If you’re honest with her, she’ll be honest with you. Who knows? Maybe you’re both Star Trek fans, or maybe she’s just as much of a die-hard Bruce Willis fan as you.
9. Strong, Healthy Hands
Let’s be real, your hands are just as important in the bedroom as anything else and it’s something women look at early on. As soon as you flag the bartender for a drink, she’s making an assessment of what kind of man you are based on your hands. Women want men that are tough but tender, rugged but sensuous, adventurous but sensible, and they can tell all that from the look and feel of your hands.
Your hands tell how you live your life. If they’re dry and cracked, you’ll look like someone who makes a living doing hard-labor and has no time or care for self-maintenance. If your fingernails are different lengths and ingrown, or your cuticles are torn and bloodied, you’ll look like a nervous nail-biter with ambivalence to personal hygiene. Subtle cues say a lot about you: don’t send the wrong message. It’s perfectly acceptable for men to get manicures, so try it.
8. Well Groomed Eyebrows
Men are weirdly embarrassed about grooming their eyebrows. You trim your beard, you trim your hair, why not trim your eyebrows? You need to. Big, bushy eyebrows or eyebrows that have a tendency to grow all the way across your face are less than attractive. Women get their eyebrows done all the time, just as they get their hair cut; it’s not an issue of vanity, it’s keeping yourself looking trim and clean.
Waxing is the easiest and least painful way to trim your brows, and there are storefronts in every city that will do it for you. If you choose to do it yourself, there are brow maintenance kits in stores all over (try Ulta or Aldo).
7. Healthy Hair
All kinds of women like all different kinds of hair: there is no winning style that will attract women. However, clean hair is always sexy. Most times you hear women complain about hair, it has nothing to do with the color or cut, but rather the health. Complaints of “stringy, long hair” are concerning hair with a lot of dead and split ends that isn’t washed enough. Gripes about hair being “prickly” or “not soft enough” often are referring to hair that isn’t conditioned on a regular basis. Men like women that have shiny, luscious, soft hair; women like men with that, too.
Stop buying the cheapest shampoo and splurge for something a little nicer; not necessarily the designer stuff, but perhaps a brand that bottles shampoo and conditioner separately. And read the directions on the bottle: lather before you rinse. You’ll get luscious hair that girls want to run their fingers through.
6. Eye Contact
We live in a culture that is somehow against eye contact. If you’re quietly staring at each other too long, you look down at your phone. If you get nervous when talking to her, you look away. Stop looking away. Eyes are the windows to the soul: if you actually take the time to look into her eyes for longer than a few seconds, you might both feel something deeper than sexual attraction.
Eye contact with a woman shows that you’re not afraid to be vulnerable with her; trusting someone enough to be vulnerable with them is one of the sexiest things a person can do in a relationship. Imagine if you were brave enough to do that when you’re first meeting a person.
When you see that lady across the bar that you want to talk to, don’t look away when she meets your eyes. Smile at her. Tell her, just through eye contact, that you want to get to know her. She might say it back.
5. Being Awkward
When we’re at the bar looking for someone to get to know, we play by an unspoken set of social rules: we can’t show our crazy, we don’t want to come on too strong, we want the other person to know that sex in the near future is an interest. So we pretend we know what we’re doing, we pretend the bad pick-up lines are acceptable, and we pretend that we’re always this cool.
But we’re not! None of us are. And when a guy isn’t afraid to show that he’s socially awkward and is just trying to do the best he can, it makes women feel like they can let their guard down; maybe with this guy, it doesn’t have to be a game or a power struggle. Maybe, with this guy, everyone can be unashamedly themselves.
4. Guys Who Read
Seriously, take your book with you on the bus or on the subway, read for a while, then look up: there will be a woman checking you out. Same for at the bar! If it’s a slow night, or you’re waiting for your friends to get there, bring your book and do some reading while you sip your drink. When you look up, a woman will be looking at you, wondering what you’re reading and how intellectual your conversations could be.
Smart is sexy, but pretension is not. Don’t take books you would never read with you to the bar (if you’re not a Whitman fan, you don’t want to get trapped into discussing Leaves of Grass all night), and don’t take a book that’s going to put you up on a high horse (if you know everything about Jack Kerouac ever, maybe take a book you’d be more willing to discuss).
3. Artistic Men
If you grew up passionate about an art form, it shows women you have a soft, sensitive, and empathetic side. It shows that you can listen to a problem or argument and see past the surface level. Artists are trained to develop a deeper perspective about all that they perceive. By being an artist, and that includes visual, performance, or musical, you’re showing her that you can see her as more than a hot chick at a bar. It shows you can develop a deep appreciation for something that has no direct dealings with sex or violence, unlike graphic video games or aggressive sports. It expresses that you’re cultured, and you enjoy experiencing culture. And what woman wouldn’t want that?
2. The Color Red
Here’s a tip any guy can take to the bank. Women associate the color red with power. In a study conducted by the University of Rochester, women associated the color red with higher status, both social and economic. Perhaps it’s even an effect of evolutionary psychology: you can trace the colors roots in power back to ancient times, when ancient Romans, emperors, and even tribal leaders were the only figures permitted to wear red garments. Even today, red is a color associated with confidence and high status: it’s why the carpet the celebrities walk on is red.
Note that the power of red stops at sexual attractiveness: women didn’t associate the color with men that were likable or kind. If you’re counting on a color to win over the affections of a woman, you’ll fail pretty epically (almost like a typical Trekkie red-shirt). Your clothes ultimately won’t matter: when they’re strewn across the floor, you’d better hope she still likes you.
1. Rolled Up Sleeves
It sounds silly, but it’s true. Rolled up sleeves denote something: they show you’re a man that has work to do, and you’re not afraid to do it; you get the job done, but you have a good time while doing it; you’re not afraid to get your hands dirty. There’s something very sexy about a man with rolled up sleeves!
It’s important to note the difference between rolled up sleeves and crumpled cuffs. It’s not so sexy to see a guy with a big sweatshirt on that has shoved the sleeves up past his elbows because he’s hot and his undershirt has pit-stains. Instead, wear a nice, clean cut shirt; maybe even a shirt you had to iron! Then roll up the sleeves in a nice, careful way (there’s even tutorials for the best ways to roll up your sleeves online). A nicely rolled sleeve shows off your biceps, reveals strong forearms, and expresses a relaxing informality about the evening.