So you just got a sweet new tat, hoping it’ll make the cute girl at reception desk look your way. The bad news is she’s still dating that guy in the warehouse; good news? She’ll bet you have low cholesterol or something, according to a new study conducted at the Jagiellonian University Medical College.
For the study, 2,369 women and 215 men were recruited, and were first shown pictures of tattooed and non-tattooed men. Then, they were asked to rate them on their attractiveness, masculinity, dominance, aggression, potential for being a good partner, potential for being a good father, and how healthy they look.
The results revealed that the women rated men with tattoos as healthier, more masculine, dominant and aggressive--but not any more attractive than men with no tattoos.
So, if you think getting inked is going to make you look hotter, you’re wrong. It’s not. But it is going to make you look healthier! So there’s that.
But here’s the thing – even though tattoos bumped up men’s appearance of health, dominance, aggressiveness, and masculinity, the women rated the tattooed men as worse potential partners and fathers. Oof, harsh. Maybe it’s because of the whole “bad boy” vibe...? Yeah, it's probably that.
So, in sum, women rated men with tattoos higher than they did men without tattoos, however, the small number of men in the study rated the tattooed men as more attractive, but there wasn’t a significant difference in ratings when it came to the health, partner, or parental domains.
That said, there was a greater difference in overall ratings of tattooed versus non-tattooed men with male participants than there was with female participants. What this means is that non-tattooed men see tattooed men as rivals in the dating game, which is why tattoos generally make you more attractive to women. Make sense?
Interestingly, regarding tattooed men being seen as healthier, a recent study found that getting a tattoo might improve your immune system thanks to your body’s habituation to the stress response. Cool stuff, my dudes.
And regarding the higher ratings of masculinity, dominance and aggression, those three features are associated with higher levels of testosterone, which is the stuff that makes a man, a man. Combine that with the fact that women like healthy, manly alpha males, and it’s obvious why women like dudes with tattoos.
Bonus fact: this is also similar to the reason why some women get turned on by the “daddy” fetish. It all comes back to the fact that women enjoy men who are in charge, and can protect them.
The researchers concluded that when a man gets inked, that tattoo does two things: it attracts the ladies by exuding an air of health and masculinity, and it intimidates other men, because men with tattoos simply look like alpha males. It’s like a double whammy. Tattoos make you look hotter to women, and it clears away rivals, so you just have a better chance of getting laid.
But keep in mind, tattoos lower your apparent (key word: apparent) potential of being a good partner and father, so they just up your chances of casual hookups, not long-term relationships.