Shiny shoes. Clean-cut clothes. Well-groomed hair. Once all these artificial coverings are stripped away, what exactly about a man is attractive to women?
A new study has revealed substance wins out over style. But it’s probably not what you think.
It’s all about the length …
… the length of their legs.
A study published in the science journal Royal Society Open Science says evolutionary pressures have a strong influence on female romantic perceptions.
Women are programmed to select healthy male specimens. And one good indicator of that is the proportions of his body.
Researchers measured the body proportions of 9,000 men in the US military. They used the data to generate computer simulations of an average male body.
Scientists then manipulated this figure, making its arms and legs shorter or longer.
It then presented a selection of body types to several hundred heterosexual women.
The question? Rank the selection’s physical attractiveness.
The results were clear.
Women don’t care about men’s’ elbows or knees, or exactly where they’re placed. And male arms are generally sidelined.
Their length relative to the male’s body had no effect on the women’s pulse.
But when it came to legs … hearts would race if they looked to be close to half the male figure’s height.
A little more … a little less and the women’s eyes began to wander.
And their ideal is just a bit longer than the male average, the study says.
This could reflect an evolutionary influence: people with type 2 diabetes, heart disease and high blood pressure may have shorter legs, for example.
“Leg-body ratios that are slightly above the mean are associated with high socioeconomic status, good nutrition and developmental stability, as well as biomechanical efficiency during locomotion,” lead researcher William Skylark writes.
“The observed preference for LBRs that are at or slightly above the population mean accords with the idea that these LBRs signal the fitness of the prospective mate.”
The proportions of the arm — as well as where the elbows and knees fit — can also reflect the impact of disease. But heterosexual US women don’t seem to care.