Be honest, straight men: You all want to know what women want.
Luckily, a bunch of scientists have wondered the same thing.
These types of studies are often small, and frequently rely on self-reported feelings in a lab, which may be different from how women truly react in real life. And the participants are often Western college students, who are not an especially a diverse group. So take the results with a grain of salt.
But hey, whatever helps, right?
Here are 11 science-supported traits that women find irresistible.
1) Good looks can be a factor, but they’re not as important as you may think. In studies, women typically choose better looking guys for short term flings, not long-term relationships.
Sources: Evolutionary Psychology, Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, Personal Relationships
2) A sense of humor is important to women, and scientists have found it makes the man seem more intelligent.
Sources: Psychological Reports, Intelligence, Personal Relationships
3) For long-term relationships, women tend to prefer altruistic men who are kind and do good deeds.
4) It’s a common stereotype that rich men get the girl. In studies, women choose men who are posing in front of an expensive car or apartment (rather than an ordinary one), possibly because it makes them appear rich.
Sources: American Sociological Review, British Journal of Psychology, Evolution, Mind and Behaviour
5) Women may like older men because they’ve had time to accumulate more resources.
Source: Evolutionary Psychology
6) Facial hair has been both an attraction and a repellent in different studies, so that feature is likely based on personal preference. Do what you want with your face — you’ll attract the right mate.
Sources: Behavioral Ecology, Evolution and Human Behavior
7) Older research concluded that people liked when other people liked them, but recent studies have found that playing hard to get could actually be an effective tactic. Being unavailable might make women want men more.
8) Small studies have indicated that men with dogs do better with the ladies.
Sources: Journal of The Interactions of People & Animals, Journal of Evolutionary Psychology
9) In one speed dating experiment, women were more attracted to men who were mindful (present, attentive, and non-judgmental).
Source: Personality and Individual Differences
10) Women around the world perceived men as more attractive when they wore red, according to one study.
Source: Journal of Experimental Psychology
11) Women have rated men higher who take heroic and sometimes primal risks. These include saving people’s lives, hunting for food, and playing with fire.