Countless books, websites, articles and movies have been dedicated to the quest to understand life’s greatest mystery: What do women want?
The answer, as it turns out, is simply to not be treated like garbage.
Kindness is the No. 1 quality women overwhelmingly want to see in their lover, according to one of the most extensive surveys on what women look for in a long-term partner, compiled by social science researchers at the University of Göttingen in Germany and the female health app Clue.
The survey polled more than 64,000 people in 180 countries, asking them about their ideal match — from religious or political preferences to the importance of height. Most women asked identified as heterosexual, but queer and bisexual women also responded. The survey skews young: Nearly 40,600 of the women are ages 18 to 24, with the 25 to 29 age group the second biggest demo. Just under 3,800 were 40 years or older.
Almost 90 percent of the women rank kindness highest among desirable qualities, followed closely by supportiveness at 86.5 percent. Intelligence received about 72 percent of the vote; level of education had 64.5 percent; and rounding out the Top 5 is confidence, with a little over 60 percent.
Notice “attractiveness” did not top the list. That might explain why the “average” body type (looking at you, dad bods!) was vastly preferred over “very muscular” types, with 44.8 percent versus a marginal 2.5 percent, respectively.
Of course appearance does matter: More than 90 percent of women want a partner who is taller than them. Heterosexual and homosexual women agreed that an attractive smile, then attractive eyes, were the two most important physical features — but responses diverged from there. Lesbian women completed their Top 5 with average breasts, an average butt and an attractive back, whereas heterosexual women put average penis as No. 3, followed by large hands and, interestingly, a short head of hair — Fabio is so 1995.
As for the soul? Globally speaking, only about 25 percent of participants said religious similarity was very important to them. However, of all the countries represented, women in the United States were most concerned with religion, with nearly 40 percent saying it’s a crucial aspect of a relationship.
And money doesn’t hurt either. The United States was among the Top 5 nations to rank financial security as very important, with almost 60 percent saying so. Women from Japan, Mexico and Colombia are hoping to marry rich, too.
Men weren’t entirely shut out from the survey: Clue analyzed just under 700 responses from men in the US, who also say kindness is most crucial with 85.5 percent. As with women, supportiveness, intelligence and education came next.
The only difference between what men and women want came fifth: While men rank ambition as the fifth most important trait, women said that confidence took that place.
Men, perhaps unsurprisingly, also mirrored homosexual women’s rankings for desired physical features.
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