Why Women Are Attracted To Risk Takers For Casual Flings

If you’re a single, heterosexual woman looking for a casual relationship and find yourself eyeing a young guy smoking and drinking like a fiend, don’t worry, you have not lost your mind. According to a new study, when it women are attracted to men who smoke and drink for short-term relationships and casual flings. Why? Because a young drunk guy smoking is perceived as a risk taker, and when it comes to the flavor the month, nothing attracts women quite like a guy who likes to take risks — by possibly giving himself lung cancer and liver disease. 

They study conducted at the Ghent University in Belgium surveyed 239 hetero women in regards to their thoughts on guys who smoke and drink. What the survey uncovered was that when it comes to short-term relationships men who are “occasional smokers and occasional or heavy drinkers,” win all the ladies’ attention. In contrast, these guys are less appealing when women are looking for the real deal.

While there's no denying that deal-breakers for short- and long-term relationships vary, it’s interesting that these traits, of all things, are the kind of traits to which women nod their head and say, “Aww, yeah!” Aren't there more exciting risks than smoking a pack a day and downing a quart of vodka before breakfast? 

Since the likelihood of you having found yourself caught up with a drunken smoker at some point in your life is pretty good, here are seven reasons why this might the case. But first, check out the latest episode of our Sex and Relationships podcast "I Want It That Way"

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1. For The Short-Term, Women Focus On Their Desires

As much as we love to throw around the old anecdote about how men think with their penises, women are guilty of thinking about what gets them sexually excited too — when it comes to short-term love affairs. They’re not looking past living in the moment, so someone who takes risks is more attractive than the person who plays it safe.

2. There’s Something Attractive About The Unattainable

According to matchmaker and dating coach, Karenna Alexander, this isn’t very surprising. “Women, especially younger women, are turned on more by the ‘cool guy,’” Alexander tells Bustle. “The ‘cool guy’ is the player type, the one who all the girls want to date, the one who is unattainable.” And, if I'm to be honest, usually the unattainable bad boy or girl is fleeting.

3. Physical Risks Are More Attractive Than Other Types Of Risks

In keeping with the concept that women want drinkers and smokers, the study found that the most desirable risk takers are the ones that do so with their body. So if a woman is looking for a short-term thing and someone walks into a bar talking about the financial risk they've taken, a woman is less likely to be impressed than if they talked about how they just jumped out of a plane, then downs half a dozen shots of tequila. 

4. There’s A Primal Element To Going For The ‘Bad Boy’

“These cool guys typically have a devil-may-care attitude, thus they are more prone to being reckless in all areas of their life," says Alexander. "They drink, they smoke, they may be careless about other behaviors as well. There is something primal about this. It's more exciting to date the cool guy, the one who is a challenge. When you actually get this guy, it can be very exciting initially.”

When you get the nice one when you’re looking for something short-term, there tends to be less excitement, especially because you assume these people aren't in high-demand.

5. This Attraction To Risk Takers Is More Likely For Younger Woman

According to Alexander, this need to be excited by the bad boy is more likely to be founder in younger women. For them, the nice guy is boring. “It's only after they get their hearts broken do they realize that this ‘cool guy’ is not all fun and games,” says Alexander.

6. Men Might Actually Be Aware Of What Their Risky Behavior Is Doing

According to the head researcher of the Ghent study, Eveline Vincke, this behavior by men could be purposeful and part of their “short-term mating strategy.” In other words, men just might keep smoking and drinking until they're ready for something long-term. Then, and only then, will they put down the sauce and quit wasting money on cigarettes — those things are crazy expensive!

7. Men Don't Care If Women Are Risky Or Not

Unlike women, when it comes looking for a short-term partner, men couldn’t care less if a woman indulges in risky behavior or not. "They like the cool girl, too, but for them the cool girl is the one who is confident and self-assured,” says Alexander.

Images: Andrew Zaeh for Bustle; Giphy (8)

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