No. While we admit we’d prefer you were in better shape than us, the line between vanity and self-improvement is one we’d urge you to tread carefully. Take your grooming rituals. Things have changed, we get it. All the stuff we’ve been using to make ourselves look better, younger, less haggard or more toned, is now available to you – usually in some ‘manly’ slate grey packaging. Knock yourselves out! We’ve been cheating for years, there’s no reason you shouldn’t. But there is a line, and know this: getting your crack waxed is crossing it. There’s no surer way to kill a woman’s libido than have her walk in on you, pinkie-finger delicately cocked in the air, using her tweezers to shape your eyebrows. Oh, and only footballers and strippers shave their chests and use fake tan. Just. Say. No. Think Ryan Gosling over Ronaldo.
Which of the following grooming rituals would you not mind a man doing?
Moisturising – Acceptable
Trimming his pubes – Acceptable
Tweezing brows – Acceptable (just)
Shaving his chest – Unacceptable
Using fake tan – Unacceptable (very)
Don’t smoke. No woman wants a man who tastes like the ’70s. If you want to be edgy, get a tattoo. They’re surprisingly sexy, less dangerous than a motorbike and cost less than hair transplants. Did we mention Ryan Gosling?
A man with a tattoo is…
Unattractive – 33%
Sexy – 67%
The thing is, as much as we want you to look good, and we do, we also want you to be men. We’re not saying don’t manscape – a man who doesn’t trim his short and curlies clearly doesn’t understand the rewards that await him if he does – but we don’t want a hairless, perma-tanned man-foetus making us breakfast in the morning. Beards and facial hair are manly and make us feel smoother and more delicate in comparison. They remind us in the best way possible of the differences between men and women. We like that we have more products than you and that you’ll probably never understand what serum is. Don’t fret over your mono-brow; we’re more likely to judge your terrible ‘bants’ on Twitter than an out-of-place follicle on your face. Work on the things that make you look like men. It makes us feel more like women.
What would put you off a man more?
His dodgy dress sense – 34%
His dodgy social media profile – 66%
We know size is important to you (we told you we’d get to it), though what we still can’t figure out is why. Size only matters if it’s part of a package. This isn’t school. You don’t get points for just showing up and whacking out your pencil case. Sex isn’t about numbers. Of course it helps. But a woman only comments on size if it’s gargantuan or microscopic. The package is about technique. Phrase of the day chaps: throw down. Take charge, at least the first few times. Your confidence gives us confidence. And believe us – you really want to find out what happens when we feel awesome about ourselves in bed.
Unfortunately for you, that doesn’t mean you can seduce us into hopping into bed with our best female friend, however many times you’ve pictured it. We’ve seen Wild Things too, it was hot. But it was also a film. We’re not saying hide that side of your fantasy life from us. But just as we’re not basing our sexual expectations around the Milk Tray man, we’d suggest you don’t go all Vicky Cristina Barcelona on us.
Don’t get us wrong, with 3nder and Facebook Graphs about to change things once again, girl-on-girl will be on the menu more often, but most women still prefer sex without the element of competition. The risk of feeling bad about ourselves in the most intimate sphere of our lives is just too much. The idea that you might like her more or, at the very least, think she has a nicer bum/tum/rack than us holds us back. Be sensitive to our insecurities. Think of it as flattering that we don’t like to share. And just a word on bondage. Yes, most of us do like it. EL James didn’t invent the spank paddle. All Fifty Shadesdid was bring it to your attention. So yes, it’s amazing when a couple can indulge in those things together, but when you first meet a woman, throw down is about using your own prowess. Not relying on props.
Also, not liking it, or just wanting to have pretty awesome sex without a BDSM contract, paddle or latex whip does not make us ‘vanilla’. That goes for you too. No pressure. If we like a bit of light spanking or roleplay and you’ve made us feel able to express ourselves in your sexual domain, you’ll find out in due course.
That is if you haven’t already asked us over Snapchat. We’re receiving a lot more cock-selfies than we care even to admit. You’re all doing it, and we don’t love it. Yes, some of us respond, but the conversion rate from penis-pic to hook-up is almost as low as Brooks Newmark’s opinion poll rating. No-one wants to be the next J-Law, or find our intimates posted on ratemyexgf.com. Or worse. Plus, we women are twice as likely to show our mates the photos you send us than vice versa. Bear that in mind before working on your angles.
If by some fluke you’ve sent a woman a cock-shot in courtship (tip: flowers are still preferable), and then slept with her, it is almost certainly 100% nothing to do with that picture.
Did receiving a cock-shot make you want to sleep with the guy who sent it?
Yes, we hooked up – 36%
No, it looked like an angry bald ferret – 64%
She has slept with you in spite of the fact you’ve gone all Dirty Den on her. You obviously have enough good humour, chat, moves (and throw down) to have won her over.
That’s assuming you’re sending them to us... Digital infidelity is a whole new snake’s pit of problems even we’re not sure how to negotiate. But it comes down to this: you know, just as we know, when you’re overstepping the mark. Yes, the waters are muddier in the technosphere, but flirty work emails and sexts count as cheating just as much as kissing.
Which of the following counts as cheating
Flirty work emails – 46%
Having a Tinder account – 48%
Sexting – 82%
Kissing – 85%
Of course we’re going to kick off if we find out you’ve got a secret Tinder profile. No, it doesn’t matter if you’ve never acted on it. Even if it’s just words. Remember those are the same words that helped woo us in the first place. Merely being present on those platforms is like saying, “I’m just not quite sure about you.” And if that’s the case, we’d really rather you said it to our faces. It’s a lot less painful in the long run. Technology isn’t going anywhere. We all need to start being a bit more honest about this stuff.
While we’re being honest, let’s talk about that awkward money subject. Most of us are OK if our partner earns more than us.
Honestly, would you be happy if he earned more than you?
No – 9%
Yes – 91%
That isn’t to say most of us wouldn’t burn our La Perlas to finally be paid the same amount as guys for doing the same jobs, but we (grudgingly) accept that until that point, you might bring home a slab more bacon – but that doesn’t necessarily mean you get to make all the decisions on how we, as a couple, eat it. Two people in the 21st century can be truly equal, even if one happens to be in a higher tax bracket.
We know that sometimes, earning the lion’s share of the household cash can mean a bum deal. We know there’s a lot of pressure on you and that we’re asking to have our cake, eat it and then offer you the crumbs. But although we relish the freedom that being a woman in 2015 affords, tradition still has a place. Being progressive doesn’t necessarily mean we don’t want men to be the ‘protector’. Being progressive means we feel more comfortable telling you that, in fact, we’d like you to be exactly that.
It’s for that reason that chivalry is still a Very Good Thing. Holding doors open and paying for dinner the first time you take us out are no-brainers, and we love them, but true chivalry runs far deeper. Walking us to our train station, getting us a taxi, putting your hand on the small of our back as you lead us out of the room, “taking one for the team” – be that walking on the traffic side on a busy street, or planning for your financial future in the way you know we’ve been doing for years – these are all acts of chivalry. Ones that in no way impinge on our desire for equality. We know. It’s hard. We’re still figuring it out too.
The best thing about modern men? You cook! If Ramsay wasn’t so craggy and Jamie wasn’t so busy, we’d definitely swipe right. Paul Hollywood deserves a sodding medal. For us, you knowing your way around a chicken isn’t just about the “well, that’s one meal I don’t have to cook” factor. It shows us you have respect for your body and what you put into it; that you have interests beyond work, the pub and the gym. That you have patience and passion. Okay, it’s sexy. We said it. It’s a way of wooing us (sorry to go all 1953 on you) that hasnothing to do with words. Cooking is to us what dancing was to our mums. Except instead of walking across a room to ask to dance, you’ve traipsed across Waitrose to pick up ingredients. Either way, it shows you care. And that’s what really matters. Just one tiny thing... maybe try and expand the culinary repertoire? We love your chilli con carne as much as the next girl, but we’ve had it seven times now. No woman can live on cow alone.
The bottom line is, we’re good together, you men and us women. With mutual respect, mutual interest and a lot of fun, we can get on just fine. More than fine. Swimmingly. And if nothing else, please remember this: no more wet towels on the bed please. We really hate that.