When it comes to meeting new people, potential partners, and dating, it's fair to say that not all playing fields are level. We may never match the Hollywood good looks and charms of Clooney, Depp, and Pitt, but that doesn't mean it's game over. There are plenty of ways to embrace and enhance the qualities that make us unique and improve those that aren't as strong.
If we're being honest, don't we all want to be that little bit more attractive? To have that certain something that turns heads? To get the attention we deserve? If nothing else, feeling our best gives us a boost in confidence that helps us manifest an outer version of our inner selves, the version we'd prefer to put out there for all to appreciate.
Whether purely for pride or to bolster our chances of attracting women, physical and social self-development increases how we feel about ourselves—and that's half of the battle.
Where confident, strong women may put some men off or intimidate them, it's accepted that most women tend to prefer confident men—someone who will add to their lives, not detract from them.
Feeling good and happy in ourselves should be top of the list for everyone, so what can we do about it?
1. Improve the way you dress
Studies show that there's a psychological reason men and women take pride in their appearance—it says so much about who we are before we've uttered a word. One of the simplest ways to develop this side of our physical attractiveness is by how we dress.
Dress for each event and occasion—erring on the smart side
You wouldn't wear the same outfit for a beach barbecue as a wedding (unless the wedding was a beach barbecue, of course!), so if you want to attract women, staying on the smarter side and dressing event and age-appropriate is a great place to start.
And as much as you may be proud of your six-pack and biceps, there are only a few places where shirtless men are acceptable—the beach, the pool, and the sauna. Showing too much skin in the wrong situations can be counter-productive to how you're perceived.
Wear red to exude confidence
There are many schools of thought as to why wearing red creates a psychological attraction to the opposite sex—whichever way you identify. For men, it's considered to make them appear more dominant, confident, and successful. Research shows that, for women, it taps into primitive desires that make them sexually desirable.
While a splash of color in our clothing helps us stand out, you'll be the only one who truly knows if you can carry off a flame-red suit. However, we could all wear red t-shirts or jackets to see if they turn into a good luck charm amongst your other wardrobe essentials.
Wear sunglasses—but only in appropriate situations
Sunglasses are cool. They're one of the most stylish and accepted fashion accessories we've got, so pick styles wisely to make the most of your face shape and fashion style.
However, they also provide a little mystery. Our eyes give away so much of what we're thinking and feeling. Taking that information off the table can make women more inquisitive about what's going on behind the shades, making them more attractive in the process.
Don't underestimate the power of a pair of good shoes
However happy you are in your favorite Nikes during your downtime, you should have at least one great pair of dress shoes in your collection. A woman will wear heels to draw attention to her legs, making them look longer and sleeker; the right shoes on a man suggest success and class and that they care about their appearance. Choosing the right footwear for the job is a win-win for both parties.
2. Get in shape
Being physically fit doesn't have to mean lifting huge weights and having the biggest body at the gym. As with many of our suggestions, overdoing the muscles can appear narcissistic or self-obsessive, so finding a healthy balance is key.
Physical attractiveness is typically quality over quantity. Looking and feeling healthy makes you far more physically attractive to women than bursting out of your shirt. A toned and well-proportioned body is usually more than enough for most women, according to many studies.
A toned and well-proportioned body is usually more than enough for most women
Remember that Rome wasn't built in a day when it comes to getting in shape. You won't achieve your ideal body overnight, so it's sensible to work with what you have while you make longer-lasting improvements. It's well worth the effort, as there are plenty of additional kickbacks from regular exercise and working out. You'll build better mental health and develop a strong immune system while releasing the endorphins and adrenalin that deliver the natural highs and feel-good chemicals that enhance your confidence and well-being.
3. Improve your body language
Looking back to our origins, seeking a mate as the hunter-gatherers we developed from required different qualities. Paleolithic men sought out women who could carry and deliver the necessary offspring to grow communities and societies, where women would look for a mate likely to produce the strongest and healthiest children.
Much of how we currently perceive attractiveness is down to that base psychological programming, so the features that suggest strength, for example, a strong jawline and a fit and healthy body, are still common subconscious drivers.
A successful, confident person promotes emotional and sexual attraction during social interaction, so how we carry ourselves plays a big part in our attractiveness.
However, today's alpha isn't necessarily the most physically attractive, but what they can bring to a partnership. A successful, confident person promotes emotional and sexual attraction during social interaction, so how we carry ourselves plays a big part in our attractiveness.
An open posture promotes open body language
While monitoring human behavior, crossing your arms and legs creates a physical and psychological barrier between you and whoever you're talking to. Instead, lose those unhealthy obstructions by facing your partner and sitting with your arms and legs slightly apart.
Your open body language shows you're invested and focused on what they've got to say.
You can fill the space in front of you with occasional hand gestures, backing up your words, and being a little more animated. Nobody wants to sit with a statue, after all.
Maintain eye contact
Eye contact is another universal signal that shows a partner you're focussed on them and only them. However, holding eye contact can be tricky; if overdone, you'll both feel uncomfortable, and if you're constantly looking over their shoulder, you'll look disinterested or easily distracted.
One trick is to focus just above the eyes or on other areas of the face.
For example, looking at a partner's lips can deliver a subconscious message that you're thinking about kissing them.
Smile—but not too much
Smiling helps you look happy within yourself and engage with whoever you're talking to; it's a dead giveaway that you're enjoying their company. An authentic smile also suggests kindness and approachability.
Allowing a smile to grow slowly suggests a trustworthy and genuine interest, and diversely, too much smiling soon starts to look false, so pick your moments and your smile game wisely. Mixing up your facial expressions keeps you looking engaged without looking creepy!
Nod your head
Slightly nodding (another action where overdoing it can make you look unnatural) shows that you're listening and agreeing with what the other person is saying, suggesting approachability and likeability; it's another part of unspoken body language that could lead to romantic attraction.
4. Work on your compliment game
There are few constants that most women love, but compliments and flowers are almost always at the top of the pile—despite regular protests suggesting the opposite.
Why do so many women struggle with compliments? Perhaps it's an inherent shyness, possibly low self-esteem, or they want you to think they're coy and cute. Sadly, it's far more likely that they're usually so badly delivered they're seen as cheesy and inauthentic with obvious ulterior motives. Whatever the reason, giving the correct type of compliment takes thought and authenticity.
5. Take care of your hair
Similarly to good personal and oral hygiene, the way you dress, and the myriad ways you take care of your appearance, women will also notice the effort you put into your hair. Find a barber or hair stylist who can give you an age-appropriate style that makes the best of your hair and face shape—booking in for regular maintenance.
However, it may not be down to style entirely, but your genes that make the difference. A study published in Florida Scientist provided interesting insights into hair color preferences during mate attraction. Researchers found that both male and female participants preferred brunettes over all other hair colors (men: 67%, women: 71%), then blondes (men: 27%, women: 23%), and finally, redheads (men: 6%, women: 6%).
6. Practice good posture
Slumping and slouching suggest laziness and poor bone structure. Your body language and nonverbal behavior send out strong signals and, when carried out correctly, can make a man appear far more physically attractive than his lazier, poorly-postured rivals.
Stand up straight and walk tall
Standing up straight and tall promotes the opposite: you ooze confidence and are fit, strong, and healthy. Lifting your head a little higher accentuates your jawline, highlighting one of the features women are drawn to that suggests a man's masculinity.
7. Use fragrance
Another way to score top marks with the opposite sex is by fragrance. It's not only women who have access to vast ranges of scents and skin products; an attractive man covers all these angles, finding a scent and skin regime that makes the most of his natural features.
Is body odor always such a bad thing?
Of course, we all prefer partners with a positive, healthy smell, but did you know that body odor contains a chemical called androstadienone, which is thought to have pheromone-like qualities?
If you're going to test that theory in your dating game, we suggest keeping it to the gym or during physical activity. For everywhere else, take a shower and apply your favorite scent.
8. Develop your sense of humor
You'd be hard-pushed to find a woman's dating app profile that doesn't reach out to a man with a sense of humor. Why? Because we all love to have fun. It takes some of the stress from our hectic lives and delivers an abundance of the pleasure neurotransmitters we crave.
We're not suggesting anyone takes a stand-up comedy course, as being the funny one in any group takes a specific personality type and a whole set of skills.
What you can do, though, is watch out for some of the simpler things that make a woman laugh, relax, and enjoy herself.
Whether you're aiming for short-term flings or a long-term relationship, you don't have to be hilarious; putting just a little of the fun back into the world will make you more attractive to women. We're all capable of being too intense or serious sometimes, so balance those moments with a little joviality and light-hearted frivolity.
And don't be afraid to laugh or poke a little fun at yourself. Women are drawn to vulnerability, so being able to laugh at yourself shows just how open and easy-going you are.
9. Have good dental health
While having teeth that are frighteningly too white can make you look fake and a little too pretentious and self-obsessed, paying attention to your oral hygiene and aiming for naturally colored teeth will make you look more attractive to women. Wide gaps between men's teeth are considered less attractive than those neatly aligned and spaced, so perhaps a visit to the dentist for a little realignment wouldn't go amiss.
10. Groom yourself
When it comes to facial hair, there was a time when a clean-shaven face was the only look that cut it. Today, the popularity of beards, a little growth, and heavy stubble are generally considered stronger than ever.
Whether you prefer the clean look or sport a little 'designer stubble,' you should take care to make either look appear their best
A woman sees good grooming as attractive, self-care, and physically attractive. Consider stocking up on male moisturizers, shaving balms, and skin treatments. Cosmetic science has developed a vast range of products for men to help keep their hair, facial hair, and skin in their most healthy and glowing states—further traits shown to be attractive to women.
The great beard debate in attracting women
Given the number of studies into the topic, research shows a preference towards facial hair in men, but whether that's a little light or heavy stubble or a full beard on their men—just as being clean-shaven is—is down to the individual.
Summary – raising your 'attraction game' for the opposite sex
Walking a dog, holding a baby, or mixing with a big crowd of friends may help you to look more sensitive, nurturing, and popular, but those things aren't always easy to call up when you need them.
Working on how you look and act is something you'll always have with you and are all traits within your grasp that women find attractive.
So whether you've been blessed with good genes or not, there are plenty of ways to work on your social and physical attractiveness—making more of what you've got instead of beating yourself up about all the things you haven't.