We all know ways to make ourselves more attractive (like for me, it’s Yves Saint Laurent Touche Éclat), but researchers have been busy finding out the types of things that we do that decrease our sex appeal (because, finally science is being used for something useful*).
Business Insider took this research and put together a definitive list, so whether you’re wanting to spice things up for your husband, or looking to find a ‘significant over’, here are the seven things you do that scientifically make you less attractive.
1. Skimping on Sleep
It may be stating the obvious, but if you’re sleep deprived, you’ll look less attractive. In 2010 researchers took photos of people who’d had eight hours sleep and people who hadn’t slept in 31 hours. These photos were rated on their level of attractiveness. Those with less sleep were rated as less attractive, unhealthier and sadder than those with the full eight hours.
2. Being a Mean Girl
Believe it or not, the nice girl doesn’t always finish last if this research is to believed. In 2014, a Chinese study put neutral photos of men and women alongside words that said either ‘evil’ or ‘honest’. People rated the ‘honest’ photos as more attractive.
3. The Way You Stand
We’ve all heard about the importance of standing straight and tall (thanks, ballet class), but did you know that crossing your arms or hunching your shoulders can actually impact on your sex appeal? That’s right, Fairies, chins up and shoulders back!
Yep, not only does stress play havoc on your emotions, but if this 2013 study is right, it also makes you less likely to score a hot date. This research found that women with higher levels of cortisol (the stress hormone) made her less attractive to males. It turns out that low levels of cortisol (aka lower stress) indicates better health and fertility…
5. Too Much Happiness
Wow – so, science says girls should look happy, but guys shouldn’t. A 2011 study showed that men rated women the most attractive when they looked happy and the least attractive when they looked proud; whereas women rated men most attractive when they looked proud and least attractive when they looked happy. Opposites attract?
6. A Bad Sense of Humour
If you’ve got a bad sense of humour (or no sense of humour), it’s time to start working on your comedy routine because a 2009 study found that having an average sense of humour, or being completely unfunny made you less attractive.
7. If You Smell Different… Or the Same
This one is a bit of a surprise! It turns out that humans look for a partner who is neither too genetically similar, nor too genetically different to themselves – and the way we base this is all on body odour. So, to find a partner for life, you should smell not too different, but not too the same… you need to smell just right!
*just in case you missed it, this was serious sarcasm.
Images from Stephanie and Jarred’s Wedding. Photography by Rachel Kara.