A new study published in the scientific journal Sexology has determined how women are most likely to check out a man that they are evaluating as a potential partner.
For this research, participants were shown 120 different images of people in swimsuits and were asked to rank those of the opposite sex according to how sexually desirable they were. It wasn’t so much the choice of photo that the scientists were really interested in, it was the method that people used to decide.
To determine this, researchers used eye-tracking software to record where on the photographs the volunteers looked – and for how long – in order to determine their ratings.
Both male and female participants spent more time looking at the subjects’ bodies than faces. This is perhaps unsurprising since the models were only wearing bathing suits. What is more interesting is which areas of the body attracted the most attention.
It turns out that for women, it is not a man’s bulging biceps or built-up pectorals that are the most attractive.
The results showed that women look first and longest at a man’s midriff over any other part of their body. A toned abdomen can be a good indicator of overall fitness and health, as it is the area where most men tend to put on weight first. Belly fat has also been linked to low levels of testosterone, which can be associated with a lower sex drive.
So, women prefer a man with a flat stomach.
What else do they look for in a potential partner? The dating website Match.com analyzed the dating preferences of thousands of members to reveal the traits that its users’ prefer in a potential date.
Similarly, this study found that women aren’t looking for a guy with a ripped body and bulging muscles. The study of the most popular male profiles shows that most female users prefer men with short dark-brown hair, blue eyes, and an average build, who are early birds (rather than night owls), and who work out one or two times a week.
Conversely, the same Match study found that men prefer women with long blonde hair and blue eyes who are night owls and work out similarly, a couple of times a week. The Sexology eye-tracking study found that – to no one’s surprise – the majority of the male participants spent most of their time looking at the chest area of the models to determine their attractiveness.
Of course, this is all the physical stuff. Just last month we discovered what women look for the most in a potential partner. Here is the one quality that makes you sexier to women than your looks, personality, or sense of humour.