Being considered attractive is something that is still very important to most people, and though there are those that would argue how shallow this is, it's definitely not without good reason; it will probably come as a surprise to nobody that those who are considered more aesthetically pleasing have a much easier ride. It starts when we're kids; studies have shown that children mostly choose their playmates depending on their level of physical attractiveness - this is due to the deep-rooted notion inside us that those who are easier on the eye are friendlier and more intelligent.
This phenomena continues throughout adulthood too; research shows that attractive people are more likely to get offered jobs and promotions and even to get less severe punishments for crimes they've committed. Perhaps the most glaringly obvious benefit of being considered good looking is the fact that you'll have a much better time when it comes to dating. With this in mind, there are plenty of cunning tricks and tools that can be used to make yourself seem more appealing to the opposite sex, and as we'll explore in this article, this is particularly true when it comes to females. Whether it's a conscious choice or an instinctual habit, these 15 ways that women make themselves more attractive are all grounded in science, harking back to the evolution of the human race. After all, the future of our species' survival basically depends on us having the urge to hook up with one another, doesn't it?
15 Duck Face
Anyone who's spent longer than three minutes on Instagram will be all too aware of the duck-face style of posing that has basically become the norm for selfies today. Although the pursuit of bigger lips has sometimes led to some pretty weird fads (remember those scary suck and twist contraptions that were all the rage a couple of years ago?!), there is a reason why lip fillers and pumping glosses are probably here to stay.
The simple answer is that the majority of guys are attracted to full lips - like those of Angelina Jolie or Beyonce, for example. Of course, there's a scientific reason behind this - men are naturally hardwired to look for potential mates that are healthy and youthful, in order to have a better chance at producing offspring. Unfortunately for thinner-lipped ladies, big pout-worthy lips are a sign of both of those traits. Long live the duck face selfie, I guess.
14 Flirting Techniques
When it comes to flirting, women definitely have the upper hand. Research has shown that they are much better at reading body language, and this is probably because more of their brain is active when doing so; a study using MRI scans found that whereas women had 14 to 16 active brain areas while evaluating others, men only had 4 to 6. This probably explains why it was also found that women will usually need to try the old eye-gaze signal three times before a guy will notice.
Other types of flirting tactics used by women are much more likely to be done without her even realising she's doing so. For example, women who are trying to seduce a guy will often raise their eyebrows and lower their eyelids. If you're trying to imagine what that looks like, picture Marilyn Monroe (and hopefully not Will Poulter). There's a pretty sneaky reason women do this; the resulting pose looks similar to the face women make when they're.... "enjoying themselves".
13 Wear Red Lipstick
Red lipstick on a woman is synonymous with sexiness; we're very used to seeing the seductive femme-fatale types in TV shows and movies wearing a sultry rouge hue on their lips. In fact, the colour red is seen as seductive in general, whether it be lipstick, underwear or a cocktail dress, and there's a very interesting reason for this.
According to anthropologists, a sexual attraction to the colour red can be seen in some primates. This is because it's linked closely to a female's menstrual cycle; female monkeys actually redden while ovulating, signalling to their mates that they are more likely to conceive.
As for the lips themselves, there's an even saucier reason why women use lipstick to draw attention to them. The outer genitals are proportionate to her lips, so by wearing attention-grabbing lip colours like red, it helps attract males who then associate her lips with, you know, the deed.
12 Baby Talk
Hopefully we all agreed that baby talk is seriously annoying and should be used under no circumstances... and yet, it still is. Ever wondered why? Well, as females age, their voices become lower thanks to decreasing oestrogen levels. Men are instinctively attracted to youthful women, because of the deep-rooted belief that they will be healthier and more likely to be able to conceive and bear children.
So, it therefore makes sense that men would have a preference for women with higher-pitched voices, even if they don't necessarily realize they hold this bias. Women are aware of this on a subconscious level; even though the majority don't resort to baby talk (thank God...), research has shown that whenever a female finds a male attractive, she will speak to him in a higher pitched tone, aiming to give him the impression of being more fertile than she perhaps actually is.
11 Show Some Skin (Neck Area)
It's hardly a closely-guarded secret that if a woman is trying to entice a guy there's a good chance she'll draw his eyes to her chest; let's face it - push-up bras and plunging necklines have long been staples of date night attire. Why do women use this as their secret seductive weapon? Well... because men love boobs.
Ok, it's not quite as simple as that. In fact, the reasoning behind the male obsession with breasts goes all the way back to our early ancestors. It's thought that rounded buttocks (stay with me!) evolved in females in order to attract the attention of the males; more fat reserves represented youth and fertility. As our species evolved further and started having doing the deed face to face, males began to notice breasts a lot more thanks to their resemblance to the derriere, and a sexual fascination with them developed as a result.
10 Use Eye Makeup
Using different eyeliners and eyeshadows effectively can take a bit of time to master, but the payoff is worth it for most women. In fact, a study found that women rated eye makeup as the top product enhancing other women’s facial attractiveness - and I'm sure a lot of men would agree. The reason that using makeup on the eye area makes a woman more appealing is based in science; women have more contrast in their faces, so darkened eyes are seen as more feminine.
Professor Richard Russell, who carried out a study on the subject noted that: "Though people are not consciously aware of the sex difference in contrast, they unconsciously use contrast as a cue to tell what s*x a face is," Russell said. "We also use the amount of contrast in a face to judge how masculine or feminine the face is, which is related to how attractive we think it is."
9 Call You Daddy
If you've ever had a girlfriend call you "daddy" (either in or out of the bedroom), you may have been left a little confused, maybe even disturbed. Well, the general consensus is that in fact, some women do so in order to show they are being submissive to male authority. While most men would probably never dream of insisting that their partners must be passive in their relationship, studies have shown that men do tend to find submissive women more attractive; even if it is only in an instinctual way that dates back to the days of the caveman.
However, the good news is that this works out pretty well when it comes to the dynamic of a lot of relationships; the same types of studies have also found that most women prefer to date dominant men. Of course, whether or not you like to be referred to as daddy is for you to decide...
Squats have become an essential part of the exercise routine for many women who are aiming to bulk up their rear. Research has shown that men not only like a low waist-to-hip ratio, but also a larger backside. Even if you're not on the Kim Kardashian level of butt appreciation, it's probably still a given that you're attracted to a well-rounded derriere.
However, more recent research suggests that guys are not solely attracted to the buttocks, but rather the curve of a woman's spine; scientists found that 45.5 degrees is the ideal curvature. So what does this mean exactly? Well, perhaps you're not actually as into bums as you thought; a curved spine will make a woman's butt look bigger, but researchers believe that it is the spine men are subconsciously looking at, thanks to the survival instincts of our early ancestors. A curved spine would have made it easier for a woman to have searched for food while heavily pregnant, as well as continuing to have kids without injuring their backs.
7 Dumb Themselves Down
Here's a potentially controversial one... I'm sure that most guys would probably agree that intelligence is something that they look for in a woman, and yet, the research doesn't quite add up to that conclusion. For example, one study from the Warsaw School of Economics analyzed data from 4,000 speed dates between 560 people, and found that men seem to be actively turned off by cleverness.
The men who took part in the experiment were far more focused on looks than their female counterparts. Ultimately, the data showed that in order for a guy to consider an intelligent woman worth pursuing, she would have to be as beautiful as she is smart. This unfortunately didn't come as a big surprise to many women; relationship expert Pauline Brown told The New Zealand Herald: “This study fits in with what I'm observing and hearing: clever women - graduates - who feel they have to dumb themselves down and hide their brains to be attractive to men.”
6 Wear Heels
Why do women train themselves to walk in high heels that are often painful and leave their feet in bad shape? Well, aside from the fact that many women just enjoy shopping for new shoes, it can't be denied that a nice pair of heels are seen as sexy by most guys. This is partly due to the media, and the way that it has linked stilettos to sexiness over time, but there's also a more instinctual basis for the appeal.
A 2010 study by the University of New South Wales in Sydney found that, perhaps surprisingly to some, the majority of men rate taller women as being more attractive. Thankfully for most of us girls, the study also noted that despite a preference for height, men were more interested in those with legs proportionate to their height as opposed to super-leggy supermodel types.
This bias towards height, coupled with the way that heels usually make legs look leaner and also cause the wearer to sway her hips a bit more when she walks, explains why many men find them so irresistible, and why women are more likely to wear them on a date.
5 Wear Mascara
Mascara is another classic staple of most women's makeup routines; even those who prefer a more natural look will usually have a tube handy when getting ready. Most people would agree that it has a positive beautifying effect on the wearer, though you may not be particularly aware of why this is.
Of course, mascara has a way of drawing attention to the eyes, which is helpful in itself for a woman looking to entice a man as eye contact is so important when it comes to flirting and connecting with someone on a deeper level. There is another reason though - it exaggerates facial neoteny; having features that are associated with youth, in this case, large eyes. As males have an inborn tendency to gravitate more towards women who look youthful, it's no big surprise that us ladies would want to make our peepers look as big and wide awake as possible.
4 Wear Blush
Though many men would probably have a hard time discerning whether or not a woman was wearing a subtle amount of blush on her cheeks, their brains are likely to have made a sneaky note of it. There's a very good reason why it has become a staple for the majority of women's makeup bags and why it makes them more attractive to men (even if they don't realize at the time).
It basically comes down to the fact that women tend to blush more easily when they are "excited", or when they're midway through the menstrual cycle and ovulating. Therefore, by putting a hint of red or pink on our cheeks we're mimicking this natural process in our bodies, and as a result sending an unconscious signal that we're "excited" or on the hunt for a mate, despite the fact that in reality we're probably neither of those things.
3 Laugh At Your Jokes
While both men and women are likely to rate sense of humour as an important quality in a potential partner, there's actually a big difference in what they mean. A study at the University of Miami found that most men want to date a woman who will laugh at their jokes, which works out pretty nicely as the same study also found that women are most attracted to a guy who can make them laugh.
If a woman is attracted to you, there's a good chance she'll have a giggle at your jokes regardless of how awful they are; science aside, it doesn't take a genius to know that everyone likes to get a positive reaction from their one-liners, so if she's out to impress you she'll want to seem as amenable as possible. Plus, it would make for a pretty awkward date if there's a long silence every time you come up with a pun.
2 Get A Tan
Have you noticed that you're more attracted to women who are tanned? If so, you're definitely not alone - research has proven that "pale and interesting" just doesn't cut it when it comes to the preferences of most guys. One study by Emory University used Photoshop to doctor photos of women aged 21 to 35, making them look more tanned. The results showed that the tanned pictures were twice as likely to be rated as more attractive than the original.
The reasoning behind this is pretty simple; most people see tanned skin as healthier, due to the fact that it can often hide blemishes and has a slimming effect. Of course, there are variations in this preference depending on the culture you're in; for example many Asian countries see paler skin as more attractive, so while women (and men!) are risking skin cancer by laying out in the sun all day in the western world, they're using skin whitening products.
1 Hair Care
Whether it's fancy shampoos, leave-in conditioner, or a Brazilian blow-dry, taking good care of their locks is very important to most women. It's not just for vanity, too - there's a very good reason that a lot of women spend so much time fussing over their hair; men are more attracted to a mane that is shiny and healthy-looking. Unsurprisingly, they associate this with a healthy body, and given that women's hair gets a natural boost through ovulation, it also signifies that they're at their most fertile.
Hair length can also play a big part when it comes to attracting guys. Studies have found that men are more likely to rate women with long hair as better looking. This is because growing long hair seemingly sends the message that the woman is healthy, and is also associated with youthfulness and therefore better fertility.