Some of what sexually attracts us to others (and others to us) is beyond our control, like size, shape, etc. but there is a lot you can achieve if you know what you’re doing and the science behind it. So, read on to brush up your “gaming” skills.
1. If you’re looking for a long term relationship, play hard-to-get.
Though people might advise you never to play hard-to-get, some research shows that all else being equal, people have a tendency to find hard-to-get people more desirable as romantic partners. The idea of chasing and attaining a goal is something that appeals to a lot of people.
2. Technically, women are not fussier than men when it comes to choosing partners.
This may sound unbelievable but dating studies have shown that when women are made to take the initiative and approach men, they lower their standards. So, regardless of gender, it is the person making the effort who will be less picky about a potential partner.
3. It’s not really men who make the first move.
Surprisingly, 90% of romantic encounters take place because of women’s subtle flirting; long eye contact, preening gestures, and open body language from a woman make it easy for a man to approach her. Studies show that men would rather approach an average-looking girl who smiled at them than a pretty girl who didn’t.
4. Your parents’ age during your birth affects your sexual preference.
Those born to parents in their thirties show a preference for faces that are more mature, weathered and even wrinkled, while those born to parents in their twenties prefer younger faces. In the case of men, it was found that it was only their mothers’ ages that affected their sexual preference, not their fathers’.
5. Fifteen minutes of exposure to androstadienone can arouse women.
Androstadienone is a usually-odorless testosterone derivative present in male sweat; when women breathe it in, they give men higher ratings in attractiveness. Fifteen minutes of exposure makes women more attentive, aroused and happy, and the results can last for up to an hour. No, it can’t brainwash a woman, just make her find a guy more appealing than she would have.
6. What a woman finds attractive in a man changes with her menstrual cycle.
When women are more fertile (ovulating), then they prefer manlier men – masculine faces and bodies, deep voices, etc. – and hairless chests. Most women of childbearing ages prefer men with clean chests, while postmenopausal women preferred men with hairy chests.
7. We are attracted to those who look like us.
In one very interesting study published in ‘Current Psychology: A Journal for Diverse Perspectives on Diverse Psychological Issues’, participants were shown photos of members of the opposite sex and asked to rate them on attractiveness. One of the photos in the lot would be of the participant, morphed to look like the opposite sex. Participants rated this face higher than the others.
8. If you’ve done something that gets your heart pumping, you’re more attracted to those you’re with.
Our brains behave in strange ways sometimes and one of those is tricking you into believing you’re more into someone than you really are. If you’re physiologically aroused (like after exercising), you feel more attracted to someone you meet because you end up attributing your racing heartbeat and quickened breathing to them, rather than your activity.
9. Men are drawn to the color red and women wear it when they’re more fertile.
Everybody knows this, right? Why is this the case though? One theory is that men become aroused by the color red because a woman’s body naturally becomes more pink/reddish when she’s sexually aroused, a flush appearing primarily on the chest. Research says that women choose to wear red when they’re most fertile. Also, studies show that women find men in red ties most attractive.
10. Hunger and panic affects men’s preferences in women.
Various studies have shown that when threatened, hungry or uncertain, men prefer more athletic and robust figures, while a man who is full and in a relatively peaceful situation will prefer a woman who is more slightly-built. This is because a robust woman reminds men of strength and independence. Most men’s preferences still lay in the more normal weight range.
11. Using oral contraceptives changes the qualities that women look for in a man.
Research has shown that when women use oral contraceptives, they look for “worthy qualities” like wealth and intelligence rather than “testosterone qualities” like muscles and athleticism. Unfortunately, a drawback is that later on, these women showed a greater dissatisfaction with their sexual lives than other women, though they choose to stay with their partners for their non-sexual contributions. Once a woman goes off the pill, her other instincts kick in.
12. Attraction doesn’t depend on the eyes alone.
Sometimes you meet someone good looking but don’t feel a tinge of attraction or sometimes you meet people who are ‘not your type’ but are attracted to them; this “chemistry” depends on your other senses, particularly the sense of smell. We prefer people whose smell has a different MHC (Major Histocompatibility Complex) genotype so that any offspring have fewer genetic disorders.
13. There IS a universal body type for women, but it’s not quite what you think.
While women may complain about the pressure to look slim, it turns out that it’s a woman’s waist-to-hip ratio that is most appealing for men. Though pop culture pins it at 36-24-36, a woman was found most desirable when her waist was about 30% smaller in circumference than her hips. And while men might ogle cleavage more, it’s only because it is more visible; otherwise, this waist-to-hip ratio wins in terms of being ogled at.
14. Your eye’s limbal rings affect your overall attractiveness.
A limbal ring is the dark circle around the iris that makes the whiteness of your eyes look brighter. A dark and well defined limbal ring is a sign of youth and good health, and it is most prominent during your twenties, after which it starts fading and ends up becoming nonexistent with old age and ailments. Prominent limbal rings make a person more attractive to observers.
15. Mirroring can help you make a positive impression.
Mirroring is something that most women automatically do; they replicate the facial expressions of those in front of them as a bonding behavior. When men mirror women, they are viewed more favorably and less as a threat by the women. Many studies on flirting have shown that mirroring is one of the easiest and most subtle ways of getting into someone’s good books.