19 Things You Wouldn't Expect Real Men to Find Attractive (But They Do)

Ladies, we drive ourselves insane worrying about whether men think we're hot. Dress up or dress down? Full-on makeup or the natural look? Do you need to dive into a hedge because you just came from spin class and oh no, there's the hottie from the engineering department and he's going to see you in messy hair, no makeup, and covered in sweat? If that stretch of sidewalk outside the gym is the only place you two ever meet outside work, you'd better hope he's into you post-workout. Or that your gym has a seriously well-equipped locker room.

Once you're in a relationship, you're getting advice on all sides about how to act around your new guy. Keep wearing makeup around him, don't drag him shopping with you, and especially don't talk about kids and your plans for the future. Listening to everyone else, a girl has to walk on eggshells around her man. Are they seriously that fragile?

After talking to some real men, we discovered that what they want is a real woman. Men think all the weird, beautiful, crazy things about you make you pretty damn sexy. So stop worrying, and check out what men find attractive about you.

Continue scrolling to keep reading

Click the button below to start this article in quick view

Start Now

19 He Likes It When You Do Your Own Thing

Picture this: two weeks into dating someone who may be the hottest guy on Earth, and he tells you that he's into a twelve-season long series on Netflix that makes you fall asleep just thinking about it. We're talking a show that may as well be a documentary about watching paint dry. You might be tempted to load up on coffee just so you can cuddle up to him while watching his favourite episodes, but he's actually going to like it more if you're up front about the way you feel. No one wants to date an exact copy of themselves. Guys think a woman who speaks her mind is sexy, and if you two can find a compromise show for dark winter nights, it will make your snuggles all the more sweet.

18 His Heart Melts When He Sees The Way You Act With Children

From the way some people talk, guys run away screaming at the first mention of kids. Even if your goal is to have a family one day, your girlfriends probably tell you that you should keep your baby-crazy to yourself if you don't want to lose your man. But most guys want a family one day as well, and even though he might feel as awkward about bringing up the subject as you do, he secretly thinks it's adorable when you coo over a baby in public. Bonus points if you get along well with his nieces and nephews - if bae sees you playing with the little kids in his family, it's going to warm his heart. And who knows? Maybe you'll spark his desire to have his own family one day.

17 He Digs How Many Drinks You Put Away

Most men consider it a plus when their woman knows how to hold their liquor. He works hard, you work hard, and when the weekend hits, he wants to play hard. So why not play together? Going home with a different woman every Saturday night is the highlight of their lives for men who first get into the club scene, but after a while it gets exhausting. He wants the music, alcohol and dancing, but he wants to go home to a beautiful woman all his own. And if she can come out with him, all the better! These guys are disenchanted with people who can't keep up with the party, and are looking for a bad bitch who can match them drink for drink. If you two party together, you'll stay together.

16 His Favourite Body Part Just May Be Your Ears

We're told that men look for a big chest, a big butt, and a flat stomach. But if that were true, why don't more guys salivate over those headless department store mannequins in the window of Victoria's Secret? Women's bodies are a wonderland, and no one knows that better than a man who truly appreciates all of a woman's form. For some men, the sight of a woman pushing her hair behind her pretty swirl of an ear is utterly erotic. He starts fantasizing about pushing back your hair himself to whisper sweet nothings in your ear, and running his lips down your neck from there. Plus, a nibble on the earlobe sends a shock through a woman's system that men love to see. So do your man a favour and let him get his ear action on!

15 A Woman Who Devours Knowledge Makes Great Conversation

No one likes a know-it-all. Or do they? Emma Watson got her start playing Hermione Granger, ensuring that a generation of boys would grow up watching (and crushing on) a girl who had an encyclopedic knowledge of the magical world. Now that she's a brainy UN ambassador, she has half the planet chasing after her. It is so out of fashion to play down your intellect when you're with a new guy. Don't be afraid to show off, and let him know he is courting his very own Hermione - a smart, knowledgeable woman who can teach him something he doesn't already know. A couple who shares a love of learning not only crushes the competition at Trivia Night, but stays together because they love talking to each other so damn much.

14 Big Muscles Are Actually A Turn On

When you started working out, your goal was to get toned but not too big. You may have even wanted to lose some weight. But after meeting some awesome ladies who lift at your gym, you got into pushing yourself at the squat rack until you started making gains - lots of gains, like you're actually considering entering a bodybuilding competition and not the bikini kind. That's awesome, and don't be scared that your crush will be turned off by your mad muscles. If he works out too, he'll have muscles to match yours and may even have some tips for your gym routine. For many men, going to the gym with a woman who does more than hog the elliptical is a dream come true. So get out there and find yourself a spotter who gives your biceps the love they deserve!

13 It's Sexy As Hell To Build Things On Your Own

A girl who can fix a car, unclog the kitchen sink and replace a fuse doesn't need a man around the house. She ends up with one anyway, because men love a woman who knows her way around a toolbox. Most of it is the aura of strength and independence that comes with knowing how to fix problems in your own home, but a lot of men's attraction for handy women comes from knowing that you have a shared interest. If your guy is into DIY, he'll be looking for a girl he can spend Sundays with, working on projects together and helping each other when you hit a sticky spot. You two may even want to literally build a home together. As for men who don't know which end of a hammer hits the nail, it's a relief to know their ladies have it covered!

12 A Natural Face Without Makeup (No, Really!)

We've heard it a million times: men don't like women's faces without makeup, they like it when women apply makeup so it doesn't look like they're wearing any. We spend so much time trying to achieve a natural look that we don't ever think to question whether men are telling us the truth about their preferences. Let's face it, unless you have the genes of a Greek God, your face is going to be more photogenic with makeup than without. But men aren't attracted to women because they make a nice picture. He wants to kiss your real lips, without getting lip gloss smeared all over his mouth; he wants to nuzzle your cheek without getting foundation stains all over his. Without a barrier between you two, he sees your true beauty shining through.

11 He Loves Your Weird Little Noises - Especially Your Burps!

Do you always get the hiccups when you drink, or get gross beer burps? Don't feel self-conscious about it. Guys don't hold it against you if you let out the occasional weird or even nasty sound.Real men don't think that women magically exist without bodily functions. It would be kind of like dating a robot. Besides, guys bond by having burping competitions - why would he turn down a hot chick who wants to do the same? It could actually get him to let his guard down around you. If you can burp around him, that shows him that you're comfortable with yourself and comfortable with letting him into your life. He'll feel all the more attraction as you become closer emotionally, and he'll let you into his life in turn.

10 Guys Are Into Girls Who Like Romance Novels

Find us even one straight man who's read Fifty Shades of Grey of his own free will and we'll show you a field filled with rainbow unicorns. But just because he doesn't like the same books as you do doesn't mean that he thinks worse of you. The men we talked to said that when they see their girlfriends reading romance novels, they think it's cute. He also takes full advantage of knowing how you fantasize about being swept off your feet. Men want to know what their women's preferences are, not the least because it's hot for your boyfriend to hear you talk about what turns you on in your favourite book. So don't be shy about telling him! He wants to help you live out your wildest dreams.

9 Getting Sweaty Turns Him On

The jury's still out in the scientific community about how pheromones work. Perfume manufacturers claim that those magical little chemicals make you irresistible to men, but did you know that everyone has a different subconscious preference for their favourite pheromone? Your personal scent is part of what attracts a man to you, and after you work out, it becomes more pronounced. We're not saying you should stop showering, but you should definitely still kiss your man after a gym session. Guys say that the smell of fresh sweat on a woman makes them feel excited, and calls to mind thoughts of other, sexier times when you've worked up a sweat together.

8 The Way You Dress Drives Him Wild

Look at the couches near the fitting rooms at your nearest Zara's and you'll find some of the most bored-looking guys in the world. No one wants to be that girl who leaves her boyfriend in the corner while she's shopping, only so he can carry her bags later. But guys dig it when you show off for him while you shop, dressing up in an endless array of sexy little numbers exclusively for his pleasure. The hit of self-confidence you get from finding the perfect outfit only adds to your allure. When he's being included in the shopping experience, it becomes an excuse to check you out from every angle. What clothes you wear shows off your personality as much as your body, so if a man finds you attractive, he'll love the way you look with and without clothes.

7 Show Off Your Reverse Wedgie

It's hot as a Sriracha bottle left out in the sun, and you haven't had a chance to do your laundry. The only clean clothes left are an old tank top and your tiny shorts from high school gym class. The shorts do nice things for your butt and thighs, but turn around and there's a big cameltoe staring at you in the mirror. Selena Gomez is under fire from every tabloid for sporting a reverse wedgie in public, so how can you show up to your date with the only sane man on Tinder like this? We say flaunt it: lots of men guiltily check out girls' reverse wedgies all the time. It's a hint of the only part of the female form that's truly forbidden nowadays, and showing it off is like sharing a dirty little secret with him.

6 Stained Clothes Show Him You Know The Value of Hard Work

Whether you have grass stains on your knees from your landscaping job or yogurt globs in your hair from working at the daycare, it's always embarrassing to run into a hot guy while wearing a seriously compromised outfit. But if he's looking for a woman who knows the value of hard work, splotches of mud are as sexy for him as a tight red dress. Not to mention that asking you how you reached your present disheveled state is a great opportunity for him to start a conversation with you. You've probably got a hilarious story to tell him, and once you make him laugh, he's already starting to fall for you (and trying to figure out how to make you laugh at his stories in turn!)

5 A Girl In Functional Swimwear Stands Out

Ditch the sexy bikini next time you're at the beach. And replace it with that old one piece you use for lap swimming. Sure, if you wear a little black string bikini you'll get lots of cute pics for Instagram, but the hot guys at the beach aren't going to come running to your towel - they're splashing in the waves, playing frisbee and tossing a football around. Wear something practical and while the other girls are lying on their towels, you'll be playing volleyball against a team of men with rock-hard abs and a serious appreciation for a woman who knows how to have fun at the beach. Make sure you bring a waterproof pen so you can give out your number without getting sand in your phone.

4 Beating Him At His Favourite Sport

Guys can't seem to stop competing. Everything from throwing a water bottle in the recycle bin to taking shots has to become a steel-cage death match. Any self-respecting woman wouldn't take part in it, right? Well, if you like competition, don't be afraid to get your game on. Your man won't think it's childish if you try to beat him in his favourite sport; he's going to admire your strength and power all the more once you achieve your victory. He's going to want to rise to the challenge and defeat you in turn, but he might just find you too distracting for him to get his head in the game. Let him know that it's okay for him to lose. He has you, so in the end he's still a winner.

3 He's Into The Way You Snort When You Laugh

Stop trying to make your giggles sound like wind chimes: it's not going to happen, and you're going to laugh a lot less. But if you really sound heinous, isn't it best to keep quiet? Not at all! According to men, even if you have a straight-up donkey laugh, it's better to let it out. No one wants his date to look like she's constipated while he tells her about the funniest adventure of his life. Men like women who laugh at their jokes, the more enthusiastically the better, and snorting while you laugh definitely indicates that you think he's hilarious. Sure, you didn't picture laughing so hard you inhaled your wine on the first date, but it shows that you genuinely appreciate his sense of humour. Letting your true self shine through is more attractive to him than any dainty giggle.

2 Awkward Dancing Gives Him Something To Teach You

People are starting to get bored of the literal grind that is nightclubs, so places offering classy ballroom or swing dancing are all the rage. If your date takes you to a trendy swing dance, don't shy away because you don't know all the steps. This is his chance to show you his moves! If you follow along with him, it doesn't matter if you make a few mistakes and even step on his toes. He sees that you're making the effort to learn a difficult dance and that he's the one showing you the way. You two are going to leave that dance class having really accomplished something together, and he's going to be so proud of himself - and of you - that his hormones will go through the roof. Expect another kind of dancing when you get home.

1 He Loves That Your Imperfections Make You Unique

Real men want a real woman, not a Barbie doll. Barbie can't even stand up by herself, and your man wants to take you out on the town. He wants someone he can talk to about the important things in life, someone he can build with, someone he can laugh with. He treasures every sweet, cuddly moment with you as much as your passion and sex appeal drive him mad. Muffin top, moles on your back, a possibly unhealthy obsession with reality TV - to your man, all your quirks and imperfections are as much a part of you as your beauty and strength. You think you have flaws. He thinks you have trademarks. He doesn't love what makes you the same as the ideal woman. He loves what makes you unique.

More in Girl Talk