Dating Graphs


The world of dating and attraction explained in neat graphs.

Women must be hot, men must be cool (alpha).

Men choose primarily based on looks while woman choose on status. The two graphs below show that difference. Given enough confidence even a fairly unattractive man can have dating success. A man lacking confidence is dead in the water no matter how good looking he is. No matter how confident she is an unattractive woman will have a difficult time dating.

Importance of looks, men versus women.

Above a certain point better looks do not really benefit a man. They may indeed cause problems (too-good-to-be-true response from women, jealousy response from other males, etc.). A woman cannot be too good looking. Any jealousy response by other women is more than offset by an increased attraction response by men. It is true that some men will have the too-good-to-be-true response and not approach, but such men are beta and thus not what she wants anyway.

Importance of confidence, men versus women.

Of vital importance to a man is his confidence. Just as a woman cannot be too beautiful, man cannot be too confident. Above a certain point extra confidence does not really help a woman. It probably does not hurt, but it does not really provide an advantage.

The socially inept, the dorky, the shy, all have problems dating. However women are given greater allowance. The shy woman will receive offers, the shy man will likely have his few haltingly presented offers rejected.

Women must be hot enough. Men must be better than.

While every man wants the hottest girl he can, the male attraction response is mostly thresholded. If a woman is hot enough he will be attracted. A man going home with least beautiful woman from a room full of beauties will not be unhappy. A nine is a nine, even if the rest were tens.

While every woman has a level of alphaness below which she will not go, female attraction is mostly comparative. A woman going home with least alpha guy in a room full of alphas will not be happy. An alpha nine is an alpha zero if the rest were alpha tens. She is likely to go home alone because she will not feel attraction for the “lowly” alpha nine.
[Of course the man would still prefer to be going home with the ten, but he will not be unhappy with the nine.]

Hot enough versus cooler than.

Men are linear, women are exponential.

Men’s response to increasing female attractiveness is mostly linear. A small increase in attractiveness will bring a small increase in male attraction response. Females, due to hypergamy, have a skewed response. Below a certain level of alphaness a man holds no interest for them. Increases in alphaness while below this point will not be rewarded with any increase in female attraction. Above this point, as he rises up the alpha scale each extra point brings accelerating female response.
[An alpha six will scrape by, an alpha seven will do OK, an alpha eight will have lots of choices, an alpha nine will drown in estrogen, an alpha ten owns the world.]

Male versus Female attraction response.

25 Responses to “Dating Graphs”

  1. chic noir Says:

    Default have you become the nice PUA?

  2. Default User Says:

    Well I always try to be nice. But anyone that creates graphs about attraction is probably not cut out to be a PUA.
    [Hey babe! Want to come to my place and see this cool spreadsheet I made?]

  3. Hope Says:

    On the one hand the idealist in me is vehemently wanting to spout off about individual uniqueness and personal attraction. On the other hand the girl who is dating a student who is into mathematical applications that determining behavior on an ecological level is sighing in resignation.

    I’m not so sure that the “best” have it the “easiest” particularly as they tend to receive so many offers that they settle down way later. The dorky nerdy girls often get into LTRs early on with dorky nerdy guys, whereas the hot model girls often play the field just as the hot confident guys often refuse to settle down.

    I know a guy who is in his 60s and very single, no LTR, and just hangs out with the guys because he was a “player” when he was younger. I know another very dorky, D&D-playing video gamer guy in his 40s or 50s who married late. He had a complete lack of love life, but then a few years ago he met his wife at work, and they are pretty happy. Purely anecdotal — yes. But you get my point.

  4. Default User Says:

    I am not surprised that you would dislike such a deterministic view of love and romance. What I described was a generalized model. Like all models it is not perfect and does not describe every potential outcome. Despite approaching its “design” with tongue in cheek, I do believe it provides a reasonable framework for describing attraction between men and women. As you pointed out being the most attractive does not guarantee the best result.

    Stereotypes can be correct for the group but false for an individual and still represent some particular truth. I believe it is the same for models of human interaction. Even for things as complex as love, even ones as simplistic as mine.

    The above notwithstanding, I did present it mostly as a fun distraction.

  5. aoefe Says:

    I found it very interesting. If there were a room filled with men and their graphs I’d pick you as most alpha. Just sayin… ๐Ÿ™‚

  6. Default User Says:

    Yeah but, the geeky-graph-game PUA will always be beaten by the Excel® natural. That is just the way life works.

  7. Hope Says:

    The model is only applicable in the anonymous urban dating circuit. Most people I know met their current and past significant others in a social circle, where they already know each other and have other people around to vouch for them.

    So people often meet through neighbors, friends, school, the workplace, and other social circles in which there are mixed groups. The proximity factor comes in to change people’s comfort levels, and personality/rapport also comes in over attractiveness/coolness.

    It makes more evolutionary sense when you think about it. More and more people are meeting as strangers in bars and clubs, or online via dating sites, but traditionally I think it was more about proximity and social circles than hotness and coolness.

  8. Default User Says:

    I still believe “the model” applies. Its effect is blunted and softened perhaps, but it is still at work. Remember I am talking attraction not that magical thing called “love.”

    Even in tight social circles men will tend to want the hotter women, while women will tend to go for the cooler guy. What helps is that shyer guys can shine a bit brighter in tight social groups because they feel more confident there. The shy guy has effectively become a bit more alpha. The average woman can shine because she remains “hot enough” but is not competing with a large pool of other women.

    Please do not think I am dismissing proximity and social circles. They are important. They even count in the bar/club scene (think “pivots” and “social proof”). Indeed proximity game is pretty much all I play because it suits my milder temperament. However I believe dynamic described by “the model” is still in effect.

  9. Default User Says:

    I changed the comment options so they are not nested. After a few replies it gets a bit messy (and the comment space becomes a bit too narrow).

    The new way similar to the way comments are at Roissy (and many other blogs).

    [technically this means I am no longer using the default settings as claimed in my banner. I hope you will that go under “artistic license.”]

  10. Hope Says:

    Shy guys in social groups get a lot of attention from women in East Asian cultures. It’s somewhat of a stereotype, but you seem to put a lot of stock in them so I’ll just put it out there. The loud, boisterous boys are not as valued as the bookworm who is extremely intelligent. This may be an interplay between culture and hormone level differences.

    In my personal experience I tend to NOT like the “coolest” guys in movies and social situations. I much preferred the dorky guy in Fight Club. Brad Pitt’s character was a turn off to me, whereas Ed Norton’s character who was portrayed as a “beta” was highly appealing, especially as a contrast.

    Again, I know you like to say personal experience does not trump general models, but I truly do prefer the “lower” guy to the “higher” guy. Outcasts unite!

  11. Bhetti Says:

    Game + spreadsheets:

  12. Default User Says:


    Actually I believe that in personal matters (and dating/romance is as personal as it gets) individual experience trumps models.

    Please do not take my “model” too literally. I don’t.

    What we may have here is confusion between a Myers-Briggs “J” and “P” types. As a “P” type anything I describe can be taken as a loose model that might fit, sometimes. I am not dogmatic. I think you might be assuming some strong structure that I just do not see.

    As to the appeal of milder guys: I get it, it is the only game I play. However it does no harm to understand the dynamic and perhaps increase my game repertoire.
    [Vanilla is a greatly under appreciated flavor. Those who have only experienced the corn syrup and water that some call ice cream may dismiss it. They have not experienced the rich, creamy, sweet, and smooth sensations of quality vanilla]

  13. Default User Says:


    His dating life may be more exciting but I bet my graphs are prettier.

  14. Hope Says:

    Maybe it is a linguistic/interpretation thing.

    J types apparently prefer to “have matters settled.” My personal settlement is in contrast with the general models that have been presented (more alpha is always better). Hence the disagreement.

  15. Default User Says:


    Exactly. P types like to leave things open (explore not decide). That is why I am comfortable in setting rules, because I know that it is OK to break them (e.g., sometimes more alpha will not win the day).

    If this openness and flexibility frustrates others be aware it can sometimes cause frustration to us (P types) as well. Sometimes life is easier if you can just set a rule and live with it.

  16. Bhetti Says:

    Oh, yes, Default darling, your graphs have positive correlations with me.

    Where do you believe yourself to be featured, placed upon that seductive exponential curve of seductive powers, hmm?

    You’re oh so very familiar with curves, Def.

  17. Default User Says:

    On looks I am probably between 6 and 7. I am shorter than average but probably fall into the cute-zone for most women. I am unlikely to turn heads but doubt any woman would have a “eeeewww!” reaction to me.

    On confidence or alphaness I have moved from a 3 in my youth to a 5 (perhaps scraping into a 6) in competitive environments (e.g., clubs), a 6+ generally, and 7 in more constrained environments (e.g., smaller more cerebral groups).

    I ain’t a player but I am not a complete dork either.

    Would I be alpha enough for you? I am not sure. At least I probably would not piss you off.

  18. Bhetti Says:

    Now, now. I think the real question is ‘Would you be woman enough for me?’ or something like this.

    I will freely admit that I’m a little bit insane and prone to passionate outbursts. So that needs to be handled with fine artistry and directed. And that’s the way I’m happiest, I suppose. I’m suspecting Default Alpha would not put up with such nonsense (and there’s also the risk personally for you of me pulling you down when being blue).

    Thus, “I have a boyfriend”.

  19. Default User Says:

    Bhetti demurred:

    โ€œI have a boyfriendโ€.

    I don’t care.

  20. Bhetti Says:

    I am scared that you did as predicted. Did you predict that I predicted?

    Including Not “That’s OK.”?

  21. Default User Says:

    It was kind of obvious the reply you wanted.

    I was berated for lack of alphaness with my “That’s OK.” answer. So what did you expect?

    [Interestingly in this case “I don’t care” seemed the natural answer. In the Roissy case my original seemed more natural (she was looking for permission not an aloof alpha moment). However, dogma is dogma. And you don’t argue with dogma (unless you have a long time).]

  22. Tupac Chopra Says:

    If this openness and flexibility frustrates others be aware it can sometimes cause frustration to us (P types) as well. Sometimes life is easier if you can just set a rule and live with it.

    Now you understand why women are drawn to *irrational* confidence.

    It’s much more comforting to be with an “arrogant knuckle-dragger” than a neurotic, second-guesser (even if the latter tends to discern Truth more often).

  23. Default User Says:


    Some truths are more painful than others.

    Not that I am unconfident, only that my confidence is merely rational.

    The problem with INxP is that any question of “what’s not to like?” can be met with 100 plausible answers. So, some questions are best left unasked.


  24. Tupac Chopra Says:

    Regrettably, decisiveness trumps deliberation when it comes to women.

  25. Default User Says:

    Tupac Chopra said:

    Regrettably, decisiveness trumps deliberation when it comes to women.

    Oh! I know and understand.

    That is why I say my fight is with me (and nature) not women.
    [At least that is one decision I have made. That’s a start]

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