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Men Explain What They Find Attractive

"My principal interests are taking drugs and listening to David Bowie—if you're not into that, then it's gonna be difficult."

by Tom Usher
May 6 2016, 2:30pm

Previously on VICE, Women Tell Us What They Find Attractive

Guys. Blokes. Fellas. Chaps. Lads. Geezers. Dudes. A simple bunch to please, some might say, especially when it comes to dating. If you believe the teachings of Two Pints of Lager and 90s stand-up routines, you probably think that all men need is someone who is "hot" and "up for a laugh." Or at least one of the two.

But are we actually that two-dimensional as a gender? Or can we be more discerning about who we want to sleep with than we let on?

I spoke to a bunch of different guys to get their opinions on what they find attractive in women and men: the shallow stuff and the deep feels.

SCOTT, 25, ADVERTISING SALES

VICE: Hi Scott. What kind of lady do you go for?
Scott: To be honest, I've met them all at the Cave Club [a monthly psychedelic night in Hackney].

So, like, indie girls?
Well, the type of girls who are into old music. Girls that look like extras from an Austin Powers film.

OK. What about personality-wise?
Personality-wise, pretty chilled and definitely into taking drugs. We'd also have to have the same interests and music taste.

Like what?
Well, my principal interests are taking drugs and listening to David Bowie—if you're not into that, then it's gonna be difficult. Those who say opposites attract are crazy.

Anything else?
They have to be independent and not prescribe to any of this gendered bullshit, i.e: "You're the man, so you have to buy me flowers." Clothes-wise, just loads of paisley. Shitloads of paisley. And a bit of velvet.

OK, what about body type? What kind of bod do you want in that paisley?
No preference at all.

What have girls you've got with looked like in the past?
When people ask me whether I'm a "tits or ass man," I usually say "eyes." I like big eyes, like them people from the Pokémon cartoons.

What about accent?
Yeah. My girlfriend is Italian, and even when she splits up with me, I'll think it's sexy. I think everything is more sexy than the BBC newsreader accent.

Why? What's wrong with the Queen's English?
It's just like salted chips, innit? There's nothing wrong with salted chips either, but there are more exciting flavors.

What about actual sex and stuff? What's good and bad there?
Foreplay, yes, definitely. Dirty talk puts me off.

Why?
It's something you have to force. If I'm forced to, I have about three stock phrases, like some kind of shit-talking toy.

What about the actual sex?
It's better when you actually like each other and get on. Then just loads of it. Yesterday I did it five times.

Wow. Any other major turn offs?
No, just dirty talk. I don't even mind fanny hair.

KENZO, 29, VISUAL DESIGNER

So what's your type of woman, Kenzo?
Kenzo: Straight in there, I see. I somehow manage to find the difficult ones, the ones with a lot of drama. I guess that might say something more about me in the long run.

What kind of drama are we talking?
My girlfriends have been arty. I guess the arty part fed into the drama.

What kind of personality do you usually go for?
An easygoing personality. Laid back, with a good understanding of my jokes, is a must. I've also found I've never been into English girls. I've definitely always had a thing for accents.

What do you think it is about female English personalities that has put you off?
I like different cultures for their different approaches to things—could be from their cooking to their opinion.

I see. What kind of look do you typically go for?
I won't go for the stereotypical blond girl who looks like all of her friends. I like a quirky look: girls who don't have to wear makeup and that don't take too long getting ready to leave the house. But they have to be intelligent, too.

What are we talking? Book smarts?
Other languages are always great, but having just simple logical common sense gets me going. What's the phrase? "Beauty fades, intelligence doesn't."

I think it's actually "Charm is deceitful, and beauty fades, but a woman who fears the Lord will be praised"—but close enough. You mentioned accents. Which accents specifically do you find attractive?
French is a classic, but a lot of the European ones. I'm not into the Asian accents, I guess.

But you're Japanese, right?
Half Japanese, half Australian. My parents are a perfect example of liking difference. My mom is a blond, loud Australian, and my dad is a small Japanese man.

You mentioned you go for arty girls—are shared hobbies and interests a thing?
Dancing is a massive one. I like to dance. When I can, I'll dance. So we have to be on the same wavelength, dance-wise. I like salsa, but I like all sorts. I get quite creative—the darker the room, the more you let loose.

What about social media? If they're idiots on social media, is that a turn off? Or don't you care?
I'm not into the selfie chicks—the ones who do it incessantly or tag their coffees and shit.

What about major turn offs? Anything that you just can't deal with?
Girls without confidence. Negativity is a downer. No one likes a party pooper.

ROBBIE, 27, SOMMELIER

What do you look for in a guy?
Robbie: I can't really say that I have a type. As a general rule, I think guys who are confident and secure in themselves are attractive. Having said that, there's a fine line between confidence and arrogance. I find overconfidence to be a huge turn off, especially when someone lacks the goods to back it up. Intelligence is quite important—there's only so much sex you can have with someone who is barely capable of holding a conversation about anything other than Kim Kardashian. Men who are unobtainable in some way are always especially attractive—for example, straight guys.

What about looks?
I don't tend to go for typically good-looking men. I like guys who have something a little bit weird about them. I have a weak spot for big arms. When a guy has nice arms, you can picture them wrapped around you. Hands are also important; I like big hands. There's something not to be trusted about a guy with dainty, soft, feminine hands. Which reminds me: Men in grey tracksuits are like God's gift to gay men. A good bulge is always a turn on.

Do you like older or younger guys?
I've generally always gone for guys a bit older than me. I suppose it comes back to the confidence thing. Guys younger than me always seem a bit insecure or inexperienced. I like men to be sure of themselves and challenging.

What about a guy's career—can that be a deal-breaker?
I find it attractive when a guy takes an interest or is passionate about the work he's doing. It's not attractive when a guy does a mundane admin job and hates it but can't be bothered to even attempt to change something he vaguely cares about. Money is a bonus, but not a necessity.

What about the actual sex?
I hate role play, dirty talk... anything that feels forced or unnatural during sex makes me feel awkward and embarrassed. Otherwise, I'm quite open-minded. I like guys who are experimental and spontaneous.

Do you have any major turn offs?
Boring men who don't know how to have a good time. Also, when someone makes it obvious he likes you and tries too hard. I like to have a bit of a chase.

LUKE, 19, STUDENT

So what's your type?

Luke: Laid back, but also got a bit of cheek. Good fashion sense, healthy, and eats good food.

Eating food is important. So what about body type? Do you care about that stuff?
They have to have a bit of meat on their bones. I like a two-tone hair color in a girl, so like blond and gray or brunette and blonde. I also think pure redhead girls are fire. Nose rings and tongue piercings are always a bonus.

Wow, you're picky. Do you have a preference for accents or the way a girl talks?
They have to be brought up properly. It drives me insane if a girl can't pronounce words properly or doesn't use the correct words in sentences.

OK, Katie Hopkins. What about social media? Is it a turn off when girls are idiots on Facebook and Twitter, or don't you really care?
Social media is massive—if the girl is vain or anything like that, it puts me off. I like a girl who takes pride in her appearance but doesn't care what other people think.

What about a career? Do you care if they have money at all?
No, it's not about money. They have to have ambitions in life, though. I don't want a lazy, same-shit-different-day sorta girl. They need to have goals.

Do they have to share your interests and hobbies? Or do you not care what they do?
I'd like them to be able to enjoy the same music as me and be able to go out to the nights and events that I like.

What kind of music?
Deep house and techno. All about the techno!

Oh, mate. What do you find attractive in actual sex, like dirty talk, foreplay, stuff like that?
Yeah, dirty talk, roughness, different places—all things like that, to be honest.

Any stone-cold turn offs?
Yeah, if the girl goes on about her past, like ex-boyfriends and shit that she's done. Hate it when girls ask how many girls you been with and shit like that.

JACK, 27, MUSIC SUPERVISOR

Hi Jack. Could you vibe with someone who didn't share your interests?
Jack: Well, I like people who are interested, full stop.

Like how?
Well, I saw a girl recently who was really nice, and we got on really well, but it was almost too well. There was no friction. We didn't have anything to teach each other—everything I thought or said, she agreed with, and vice versa, and that became a problem. So I think I'm looking for someone who I can learn from. Obviously principles are important—like I know I'd find it hard to be with someone who disagreed strongly with my worldview or political stance. But apart from that, I think some difference in interests can be a good thing.

What about sex stuff? What are your preferences?
What I will say is that foreplay is very important. Sex is mad important. I can't be with someone who stimulates me in every way except the bedroom. If there's no sexual chemistry, you're fucked, in my opinion.

So do you have any turn offs?
The way a girl dresses is very important to me. I know that sounds terrible. I care about style and clothes, so that extends to what I find attractive. I mean, it's not a deal-breaker, and to be honest, if a girl just has this next style all to her own, then that's a vibe. But she has to have style.

What about in the bedroom?
Sexually, being squeamish about anything—that's a turn off. Not being comfortable with her own body. Physically, I like women who are in shape, but also I'm turned off by women who are too skinny, I gotta be honest.

Honesty is the best policy, Jack.
Massively. I'm a curves guy, bodacious with the accurate back off. I'm not down with these wispy waif chicks. Beth Gibbons, bony and whimsical—bun that.

Now read what the girls said.

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