These 9 Things Can Make You Less Attractive, Science Says

We’ve always wondered what makes people more attractive than others. But have you ever asked yourself what certain traits or behaviors make you less likeable? What things and activities actually decrease your attractiveness?

IFLScience reports that there are 9 things that sabotage your appeal, based on science. Here are things you should avoid in order to easily impress your object of affection.


  1. Depriving yourself sleep

Sleep deprivation not only makes you less healthy and less happy, it also makes you less attractive. A group of researchers in 2010 compared photos of people who’d slept for at least 8 hours the night before and people who skipped on sleep for 31 hours. As expected, sleep-deprived people looked more tired and less attractive.

2. Being mean

While the plastics in the movie Mean Girls were all hotties, being mean is generally perceived as less attractive based on a 2014 Chinese study. In the study, a group of participants were asked to comment on the photos of other people all flashing neutral expressions. Some of the photos were labeled “decent” and “honest”, while others were accompanied by words “evil” and “mean”. Other photos were not labeled. Results of the study showed that people described as evil and mean were rated as least attractive.

3. Channeling the contractive body position

Your posture does a lot to your appearance and confidence. This is the reason why many try to master the “power pose”, a posture that involves expanding our body that can make us feel more confident and powerful. A 2016 research revealed that a contractive body language such as crossing your arms or hunching your shoulders can make you appear less attractive.

4. Being stressed

Stress does a lot of bad things to your body and even to your sex appeal. This was proven by a 2013 study that has found that women with high levels of cortisol, a stress hormone, were seen by heterosexual men as less attractive.

5. Appearing too proud or smiley

A 2011 study involving 1,000 people showed that women were perceived most attractive when they appeared happy and least attractive when they showed pride. Meanwhile, men were rated most attractive when they exhibited pride and least attractive when they appeared happy. Truly, men are from Mars and women are from Venus.

6. Lacking a sense of humor

We all know that being funny gives you an advantage in the dating game. But most of us are unaware that not having a sense of humor affects a person’s attractiveness. A 2009 study showed that both men and women who had an average sense of humor were found to be less attractive than funny people. On the other hand, having a poor sense of humor were found to be unattractive in both genders.

7. Being lazy

Have you ever been attracted to a lazy person? If the answer is no, then you’re certainly not alone. A series of 2014 experiments carried out on students in a six-week archaeology course showed that students were rated less attractive if they’d proven to be lazy.

8. Smelling too similar or different

Did you know that we can tell if we are genetically similar or different to a person based on their body odor? A 2006 study has shown that couples who had similar major histocompatibility complexes or immune genes (and perhaps smelled too similar) were less attracted to their partners and were more likely to have sex outside the relationship. Also, it was found that people tend to avoid partners who smell too different from them.

9. Being dishonest

Dishonesty can definitely get you into trouble, even in the dating world. It’s a major turn-off for both men and women and can certainly compromise relationships. This was even proven in a 2006 study that showed that honesty, compared to intelligence and independence, is the only trait that has a substantial effect on attractiveness.

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