When it comes to flirting with a new acquaintance, a woman should forget her shy smiles and pointed small talk to avoid misunderstanding of her intentions from the opposite side. Men are not able to "read" hints even if they are accompanied by flirty body language, and prefer the direct communication when being approached by women, concluded the new research on this matter.
Scientists at the Bucknell University in Pennsylvania have discovered that, while women find men, who can have a certain way with words as more attractive, for the men everything works just in the opposite way. Men, the experts explain, are unable to guess any hints, and therefore find more appealing the direct approach, followed by exchanges of phone numbers and straightforward questions like "Do you have any plans for this evening?" or better "What are you up to tonight?" or, even better, "Can I give you my phone number?" It was found that these messages, as opposed to the favored by many people classic line "Do I know you from somewhere? You look so familiar," are better understood by men, leaving no room for doubt as to whether the initial contact might lead.
For the study, the researchers recruited a group of females and 70 male volunteers. The women were asked to write down their favorite, pick-up lines, out of which the scientists chose the 50 most common ones. These lines, in their turn, were presented to the men, who were asked to express their opinion on how they thought the lines would work in practice.
The results revealed that gentlemen, as opposed to the majority of women, preferred being approached straight, with an open, sincere invitation to dinner, for a drink or going to movies, ranking first in the top of best lines. Exchange of phone numbers scored next best with the male volunteers, followed by the above-mentioned invitations like "What are you doing tonight?" in the third position. "The direct indication of a possible date as well as the hint of a possible date gives the man a clear signal - instead of sending mixed non-verbal signals that the man must decipher." psychologist and a study's lead author Dr. Joel Wade said. Direct questions and invitations remove any "uncertainty regarding the outcome of the interaction," Dr. Wade further explained.
As to the ladies, the scientists said that some of them also rated the straightforward approach as the most appealing, but the majority gave their preference to lines that were supposed to establish some common interests between them and the man who was trying to chat them up, such as those on topics related to the weather. One previous study found that talking about the weather was a successful way for men to approach ladies, while corny chat-up lines were considered to be the worst tactics.
At the bottom of the list, among the least successful strategies were, of course, jokes and humorous lines such as "Have we met before?" "Where have you been all my life?" "Did it hurt when you fell from Heaven?" and "Your shirt matches my bedspread: you belong in my bed" for the representatives of both genders. However, the worst possible line that women can use to hit on men, appears to be "Hi, how is it going?" since it offers no indication as to the type of interaction desired, Dr. Wade concluded by saying.
The study is reported in the journal Personality and Individual Differences.