Body Language Part 4 – Male/Female Attraction

Posted by: Jo Banks

Date: 01-01-0001

The differences between male and female body language when it comes to attraction and what it means...

On my previous blogsite (before I incoporated my blog into my website) this has been by far the most read post, with over 5,000 hits!), so it's obviously something that my readers are interested in!

If you’ve read the other 3 posts I’ve written in this Body Language series you’ll know that no matter how far we like to think we’ve come in terms of equality between men and women, one thing that is still worlds apart and is not going to change anytime soon, is our subconscious body language. These are ‘animal’ instincts and unless we are completely aware of what our bodies are doing, we have very little control over them. Most of the behaviours and poses I’ve talked about in all of these posts are instinctive/natural reactions that we aren’t necessarily conscious of.

In terms of body language and attraction, it is really important that we are conscious of our own body language (in other words the ‘signals’ we are giving off) so as not to offend the other person or give them the wrong idea.  For example what a man may think is a perfectly reasonable pose, may in fact be quite offensive to a woman or what a woman may think is being ‘friendly’ may be interpreted as a ‘come on’ by a male.

The easiest way for me to explain the differences is to split the behaviours in to two; male and female attraction traits:


On spotting someone she fancies:

  • Suck ‘n’ Tuck – she will stand taller (pull herself up to her full height), suck in her stomach and stick out her boobs in order to show off their best assets.
  • The ‘sashay’ – swing her hips from side to side as she walks.
  • Hair – she will play with her hair, twirling it around her fingers or tossing it over her shoulder if it’s long. I once witnessed the most bazaar display of hair tossing I’ve ever seen, this was a woman in a club who keep dropping her head forward so that her hair fell over her face and violently jerk her head back so that her hair fell down her back. Far from looking attractive, to me she looked slightly crazy! She was definitely overdoing it.
  • Head gestures – many women will use the sideways ‘peek-a-boo’ look. This is a quick sultry look where the woman will make sure the man is looking at her than quickly look away.
  • Blushing – I don’t think I need to explain that one.
  • Facial changes – when we fancy someone (this is the same for male or female) our pupils slightly enlarge and blood pumps to the lips making them seem fuller.
  • Hand gestures – a woman will bring her hands to her hips in order to bring the man’s attention to her childbearing capacity or touch her mouth in order to bring attention to it.

Before you get all feminist on me for the last point, remember, our human subconscious behaviour hasn’t yet caught up with our minds and these movements are usually entirely without our realising that we’re doing them.


On spotting someone he fancies:

  • Suck ‘n’ tuck – as with females and man will draw himself up to his tallest and suck in his stomach.
  • Preening – a man may check his hair, slick down his eyebrows (honestly) and check his clothing.
  • Body Language – a man will often put his hands on his hips to make himself seem larger.
  • The Crotch Display – this is where the man sits either with one ankle over one knee or with his legs completely splayed. In extreme cases it is usually accompanied either by hands behind the head or outstretched resting on the back of the chairs either side or across the back of the sofa. If these arm movements are involved, it’s subconsciously shouting, “LOOK AT ME, I’M VIRILE ... CHOOSE ME!” Now guys I have to say that to a woman, this pose far from being attractive to us can be a huge turn off and sometimes hugely inappropriate.

I once had a business meeting with a man who sat opposite me doing a full crotch display with his arms out stretched on the chairs either side of him. That just screamed, “COME AND GET ME” and actually downright rude in a business (or pretty much any) situation and made me feel really uncomfortable - he obviously wasn't reading my body language (arms crossed/legs cross, perched awkwardly on the edge of my seat). Guys, you need to be careful with this pose, you may want to tone it down a touch – at least drop the widespread arms! Men also use this posture when they’re together in a group – it’s a display of manhood ie ‘mine’s bigger than yours’!

Touching is interesting for both male/female – if someone fancies the other person, they will tend to touch them fleetingly and enter the other persons Outer (or even the Inner) Personal Zone (see the post No 1 in this series for more information regarding zones). Therefore, it’s important to know that if you are a generally ‘touchy feely’ or demonstrative person, others can and will read things into your touching them ie they will most likely think that you find them attractive.

Going back to post No 3 - Building Rapport, if you really want someone to fall for you, you need to get in ‘rapport’ with them as soon as possible so as soon as you are in a conversation with them, start to do some subtle mirroring. Take is slowly at first (so that don’t notice and think you’re acting oddly), when she picks up her glass, you pick up yours, when she crosses her legs, you cross yours. Although, if there is real chemistry between you, you’ll notice that you are mirroring each other subconsciously anyway!

Here’s some recommended reading if you want to know more about body language:

  • ‘How to Read and Use Body Language’ by Anna Jaskolka (an easy read)
  • ‘What Every Body is Saying’ by Joe Navarro (much more complex)


If you'd like help understanding the impact of your body language or would like to feel more confident in social situations, contact us for a free, no obligation consultation on how we can help you.

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