Dissecting the Modern American Male

Super Secret Turn Ons of the Modern American Male

Every once in a while I come across one of those lists of Secret Guy Turn-Ons (the most recent one is here).  You know these lists; they appear in every single rag, and on countless websites.  Go ahead and put “Secret Guy Turn Ons” in Google to see the plethora of offerings.  Something about these lists always seems to be inauthentic, like they are fabricated for search engine optimization, as opposed to insightful.  So I decided to come up with my own list.  I emailed a bunch of friends, I took live surveys at bars (no joke) and I did a little Facebook poll, all to give you some indication as to what turns on the mind of the Modern American Male.

Two things to note before we get into the list.  First, I filtered heavily.  As we want to maintain some level of decency in this series, I am presenting to you only the stuff that was rated PG.  And yes, there is a lot that I filtered… I was talking to drunk single dudes at bars, after all. Secondly, and more importantly, I do not condone any of this.  Just because I am presenting this list does not mean you should go out and change your life to accommodate the whims of guys you don’t know.  I’m just trying to present a different angle on how guys think, as I do with every post.

So here goes, and please share your comments and thoughts!


This came up over and over again.  An accent gives the illusion of the exotic and unknown, which feeds in to the Modern American Male’s flawed perception that foreign women are different than domestic women.

Eating/Drinking “like a man”

This was also frequently mentioned, but with countless nuances.  A number of guys mentioned they like a woman who can enjoy a good steak.  Quite a lot also noted that a woman who drinks whiskey is alluring.  I believe guys like this because it is a signal to them that the woman is willing to relax and cut loose, like she’s breaking out of the cookie cutter mold of typical “Stupid Girls” (a la Pink).

Scar/Tattoo (but not scarred or tattooed)

Men like this one because it gives “edge” to a woman, but too much edge becomes intimidating or scary.  Hence, there is a fine line between having one or two tasteful tattoos, to being “tattooed” and looking like that chick who broke up Sandra Bullock’s marriage.

Forehead tattoo... not so hot.


Sarcasm is just a more specific form of the general “sense of humor” answer that you see on all the regular lists of turn-ons.  I think the difference is that sarcasm involves a level of wit and acuity that men find attractive.  To be truly sarcastic and witty, you have to think on your feet and have a keen associative mind, which is always attractive to both sexes.

Unique Abilities

I received a number of responses that all fall under this category.  Some are typical, like “playing pool” or “being good at yoga”, but others are more interesting, like “driving stick shift”.  One guy even mentioned “parking a semi-trailer”.  Having unique abilities is an added bonus to men, something special that differentiates one girl from another.

Jeanette Lee, the Black Widow

Competitive Team Sports

The concept of sports, or being sporty, appears on so many of these lists, but I realized that there is something deeper in this.  Specifically, men have a bizarre attraction to women who play competitive team sports like soccer or softball.  I used to think that guys were attracted to the uniforms, but I think what is attractive is actually the competition.  There is something about a woman being competitive, and giving 100% of herself to an endeavor that is attractive to men.

Dutch Field Hockey -- Olympic Gold 2012

Good Grammar

Not all guys are in tune with the rules of grammar, but those that are place a high premium on good grammar.  For these guys, I think good grammar represents some basic level of intelligence to them, and that is why they find this aspect attractive.

Neck/Collar Area

Ladies, forget cleavage and short-shorts.  Guys are still interested in the subtle aspects of a woman’s body.  To my pleasant surprise, quite a number of males mentioned the sexual appeal of the neck/collar area.  Showing some clavicle is apparently a huge turn on, it reveals very little but has a lot of impact.


Guess what ladies; turns out men don’t give a damn about your necklace/earrings/bracelet.  In the world of accessories, glasses are the biggest turn-on for men.  A good pair of glasses gives an added edge to a woman, plus it makes her seem more “real” and down-to-earth.  A good pair will also draw attention to your face and eyes.


Readers, what do you think?

Bombshell McGee image via Current.com, Jeanette Lee image via BilliardScoop, Dutch Field Hockey Player Image via SFGate, Girl with Glasses image via TheTrendyGirl.net, Comic image via Enews.org

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