Do girls like skinny guys? Take a look at the love lives and enamored fans of skinny men like Adrien Brody and Benedict Cumberbatch, and the answer is clear. But if you’ve ever wondered how a gangly guy like Pete Davidson is attractive to women like Kim Kardashian, Ariana Grande, and Emily Ratajkowski, it’s not his sense of humor, charm, or even his bravado. So what makes skinny men attractive to women?
In an era where men like Joe Rogan are accusing decidedly more swole celebrities like The Rock of steroid use, it makes sense why straight women are sick of watching these bros point their biceps at each other, and taking interest in a more understated approach. After all, there are a number of scientifically backed reasons why many women aren’t looking for a stereotypical hunk of beef, and might prefer a string bean instead.
Here are five things that skinny men have going for them.
Skinny Guys May Live Longer
For women looking for a life partner, thin men may be the best long-term bet, especially since women outlive men by about five years on average.
Although it’s true that being underweight is generally bad for longevity, thin guys aren’t necessarily underweight — they’re just not jacked. More importantly, there is evidence that guys who start off thin in young adulthood and then gradually increase their BMI with age, without ever becoming obese, tend to live the longest. It seems that naturally skinny men may have an edge when it comes to a slow burn in life…and perhaps love too.
...And That Might Be Because They Have A Genetic Advantage
Natural selection suggests that women are often more attracted to men who increase the likelihood of their offspring’s survival. And skinny guys may fit that bill. A massive study indicates that naturally thin people are able to maintain smaller frames not because of healthier habits or lifestyle choices, but because of their specific genetic makeup. So if you want to set your kid up for a life where they don’t have to worry about the health risks from becoming overweight or obese, get with the skinny guy.
Skinny Men Are The Perfect Amount Of Masculine
There’s long been the notion that bigger muscles mean more testosterone and by extension, more manliness. That’s a myth. Two studies have found that increased muscle growth and strength from working out does not increase testosterone levels.
Likewise, urologist Robin Bhavsar, who was not involved in the studies, explains in a blog post that there is absolutely no correlation between being thin and having low testosterone. Unlike overweight men who tend to have lower testosterone because fat cells convert testosterone into estrogen, skinny guys tend to have healthy and stable testosterone levels.
Finally, an additional study found that in terms of gauging facial attractiveness, instead of rating men with strong jaws and “macho” features as more appealing, women were more drawn to men with skinnier faces.
Skinny Guys Are More Secure With Themselves
Men are less prone to eating disorders than women, but research shows that they may struggle as much with their bodies, in different ways that often go undiagnosed by mental health professionals. Mainly, male eating disorders tend to be focused on the obsessive and unhealthy pursuit of muscles, often referred to as “bigorexia.”
As much as swole men can build themselves up about how great they look, it seems they can tear themselves down with the same force. In contrast, skinny men don’t seem all that concerned with their bodies one way or another, which could theoretically contribute to the confidence and security that’s usually credited to BDE, when it’s actually BNE — body neutral energy.
She’s Just Not Thinking About Your Body That Way
Most women don’t judge men based on their bodies. When researchers analyzed data from 68,000 women in 180 countries about what they found attractive in men, personality came out on top across the board. Overall, 88.9% said kindness was “very important” when choosing a partner, 86.5% said supportiveness, and 72.3% said intelligence. Only 22.3% of women said that an “attractive body” was an important quality for a partner to have.
And what makes an attractive body? Only 2.5% said a “very muscular” body type was ideal, compared to 44.8% of women who just wanted an average looking guy — about 10 percentage points more than women who wanted a fit and athletic partner.
The point is, whether you’re skinny, average-sized, muscular, or a fat guy, women are more focused on a man’s brain than his body, because that’s going to determine how he treats someone he loves.
This article was originally published on