Be Strong. Be Fit.


Do Women Really Like Muscular Men?

June 11th, 2009 · 26 Comments ·


For those who have watched Transformers movie, not sure whether you remember a scene which Sam (Shia LaBeouf) tried to show off his bicep to Mikaela (Megan Fox) when the she told him that she likes guy with tight abs and big arms.

So, do women really like muscle men?

If they do, will they have a fling with those muscular men?

Previously, we probably did not have the answer. Now, we have it. An interesting study has finally been conducted. According to UCLA research published in the August 2007 issue of the Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, men who are more muscular than average are much more likely to have short-term affairs and multiple sex partners than their scrawnier (unpleasantly thin) peers. The well-muscled are twice as likely to have more sex partners, flings and affairs than those with less toned and chiseled physiques.

Wow, twice as likely.


The series of studies is the first published research to quantify an association between men’s muscularity and their success in flirting with women. The four-year project, from 2002 to 2006, also scientifically quantified for the first time women’s perceptions of the importance of muscularity in selecting short and long-term partners. A total of 788 college students — 509 women and 279 heterosexual men was involved in this study.

Like it or not, men like beautiful sexy women and vice versa. Women are putting a priority on attractiveness, which in this case is the muscularity when they choose sex partners. The researchers even said that that their findings on muscularity are consistent with research findings on the secondary sexual characteristics of other animals, such as the attention-getting tail feathers of male peacocks.

After knowing this study, my friend half jokingly said, “Now, I know why so many men working out at the gym!”

Is it the end of the world for men with other types of bodies? Not really.



When presented with six standardized silhouettes of men ranging from brawny (bulky type) to slender, women consistently identified the most muscular ones as less likely to commit but also more volatile and domineering. They rated “toned” guys as the most sexually attractive.

Most women characterized their long-term and presumably less muscular partners as more trustworthy and romantic than their one-night stands or brief affairs. Women believe they are more faithful and romantic. For toned and brawny men, the bodies make them more sexy to women. On the other hand, it makes women more suspicious about their romantic intentions.

By the way, it is important to know that the subjects of the study were male and female undergraduates (aged 18 to 25 years old) living in California, USA. So, it may not be accurate and fair to assume that the result applies every where else in the world.

Depending on how you look at this research result. I believe that, for short term relationship, it suggests that the sweet-talk approach works better for less muscular men whereas the muscular men do not need to put in this kind of effort to get lucky for a “night” out. As for long term relationship, just like the tortoise, less muscular men will finally win.

Also, actually for most men, for a fling, they like girls with big boobs and nice round asses. But for wife, they are not so important. Women were more physically attracted to muscular men, especially for a fling. But when it comes to long-term life partner, women tend to pick a regular guy over a mate with huge biceps.

I doubt muscles always win.  Some people are still working too hard too much for huge biceps – who else can beat that 27 inches of biceps?




Category: Other Fitness/Sports Articles

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26 responses so far ↓
  • Jonz // Jun 11, 2009 at 8:55 AM

    “The well-muscled are twice as likely to have more sex partners, flings and affairs than those with less toned and chiseled physiques.”

    The quote above is pretty much accurate I would say. Though different ladies have different perceptions of muscular men, most will be attracted to the “toned” type as opposed to the bulky type.

    So guys, get ready to blast those fat down <11%

  • Devil's Advocate // Jun 11, 2009 at 5:58 PM

    So ideally, I’d want to be somewhere between built and toned in order to look somewhat attractive.


    So much work to do!

  • sim // Jun 13, 2009 at 1:43 PM

    We ladies are turned on by “toned” men…… my….they look good… Pot belly is a real turn off…..

  • Jon // Jul 3, 2009 at 6:25 AM

    Unless you are a bodybuilder and don’t’ care what women think. I don’t bodybuild for women. It’s a personal thing. But I suppose this post was for guys trying to get women.

  • Kevin // Jul 9, 2009 at 4:21 PM

    It mainly comes down to preference. Personality also plays a role too. No women would want a “toned” ass hole.

  • chessman71 // Jul 16, 2009 at 1:21 PM

    LOL. So let me get this straight: women will sleep with the muscular guy but choose to become the ball and chain for a “toned” guy they know they can dominate.

    So what guy in his right mind would choose toned over muscular? I think you just found the perfect argument for bulking up. :)

  • Mike // May 22, 2010 at 7:59 PM

    When at the gym, your main motivation is to get the girls, as simple as that. Women want what nature has told them about basic survival in this world. If you can’t take care of yourself, how can you take care of them, even though I understand that may not be true, it’s all about perception. I used to be 215 overweight pot belly, started goin to the gym 4 years ago, I’m not 170 with six pack, and I got to tell you, girls I thought were out of my reach year’s back, well now it’s so easy picking them up. It’s about first making decisions that will make you happy, if your happy the way you are, stay that way. I wasn’t so I decided to change myself, it took alot to get there but it was worth it, how many men can say they had more than six threesomes, with different girls. Find you inner drive.

  • Mark Haedrich // Dec 23, 2010 at 4:10 AM

    I do not agree that Muscuar men are more attractive…i used to be called chubby 7 years back this is when i decided to train serious and now i am super toned and super fit and even do part time modellin…Now when i look back i feel that i had a better sex life when i was chubby cos woman used to think i am so cute and sweet but now woman think i look good yes but they feel rather insecure about datin me cos they feel that i am a womaniser…i dont know why woman have this fucked up feelin that if you are toned and look good you must be humpin every skirt in me there are many days or even months when i am just usin my hand my forearms are all swollen up:) so i would not agree with this post. garbage!!.

  • Mico // Jan 7, 2011 at 9:31 PM

    I agree with you. sometimes woman think toned and super fit man are womanizer, that’s why they much prefer chubby man or ordinary thin man. But its up to you to make your body fit and toned or stay the way you are if you are satisfied to your body…

  • peter // Jan 14, 2011 at 12:06 AM

    most famales like muscular men. cosn there is hope of protection

  • johnsmith // Jan 17, 2011 at 6:46 PM

    ummm, gregg valentinos arms aren’t real… he didn’t do any work to obtain those disfigured oil filled things. they’re not real muscle, it’s a substance called synthol.

  • Scruffy // Feb 17, 2011 at 6:41 PM

    I think that if people would stop using a diaper on a stick as a broom then maybe the world would be a better place.

  • Lisa // Feb 18, 2011 at 4:51 PM

    I just stumbled across this site, but I have to say that muscular men turn me off! A little definition turns me on, more so than a skinny frame, but I’d much rather have a guy be skinny than hugely built up! Too much! Eww!

    I’d say it’s just as bad as being chubby/overweight.

  • Lucius // Feb 20, 2011 at 6:30 PM

    I disagree with Mike. Not eveyone who goes to the gym goes to get the girls.

    I for one couldn’t give less of a damn whether the girls will like my physique or not, but i go to the gym because it’s a sport I enjoy. Who in his sane mind wouldn’t enjoy the pump you get from weight lifting? Am I right??

    I pitty the guys who go through so much pain and hard work only for someone else, or just “to get girls”.

    Girls are not worth the trouble and pain of bodybuilding, all you need is a good personality.

  • Tom // Mar 7, 2011 at 1:24 AM

    as a gay man i find this offensive

  • Matt // May 19, 2011 at 1:21 AM

    Workout for yourself. Women are attracted to physique, but they stick with personality, and sexuality. Take care of their needs, make them feel wanted and be a man and take care of yourself. I’m 5’11 and I’ve had all stages: Thin (115lbs), Toned (175lbs) and Fat (200lbs – no tone, and a pot belly). I’ve never had a problem getting girls. However – When I was toned I had better picking from the buffet of life.

    Girls don’t want guys who look like “10’s” because they’re usually asses. Just like guys don’t usually keep girls that are “10’s” because they know they’re 10’s and they will often move on to the next best guy who can provide more for them. (Several psychological studies have been done and prove this.)

    I prefer to find a girl who is an 8, but doesn’t know it. Be a man, keep yourself in shape, take care of her (but don’t wimp out – girls want a guy who is confident and can make decisions) and support her. Communication is key – girls are communicators and they like to know they are being heard.

    People divorce because of the following reasons: (In order)

    1- Financial issues
    2- Lack of communication
    3- Infidelity

    87- Body Fat (look around – there are beautiful women with FAT Obese turds everywhere…)

    It comes down to responsibility and taking care of business. Do these things with good, honest communication (and make them laugh from time to time) and you won’t have a problem!

  • andywattbulb // Jan 3, 2012 at 7:04 AM

    I prefer slender–toned men.

  • joe jackson // Feb 22, 2012 at 4:31 PM

    been noticing the more fit i get, the more women like me…its awesome, i love being checked out,.i i was recently hit on recently…awesome….. im hooked. now its time to teach my cheating girlfriend a lesson…. lol. paybacks a bitch… isnt it,

  • John // Mar 15, 2012 at 1:39 PM

    The reality is that it’s better to be muscular / fit / ripped..etc than scrawny, not just because women are more sexually attracted to this body-type, but because such muscular men can likewise play ” the nice guy”.

    Imagine that..A beautiful, sexy woman..that is also faithful / “chaste” ( only wants to have sex with her man, and no body else ..) , family oriented ( would make a great, caring mother..). That’s every man’s dream ( Ms Perfect ) and from a woman’s perspective, that’s likewise every woman’s “Mr Perfect” / dream.

    A strong, fit, muscular / masculine alpha male that is completely committed to her sexually and in every other way..They would choose that over an out of shape “romantic” twinky.

  • William // Apr 13, 2012 at 6:41 PM

    Sorry John but I disagree there. I find it insulting that a woman would want me to kill myself for her. She is only worth a screw and thats it. I am 30 years old and will not be the fallback guy for a girl who has had her share of muscular one night stands. I am a skinny unmuscular ectomorph but have been told I was good looking. I do have a good face, but a rail thin body. And while I want to start working out, it isnt completely to please women. I would like to look good to prove a lot of a–holes from my past wrong. I wouldnt find it rewarding at all to admired and loved for my physique by a ons or a significant lover/ And sometimes I feel flat out screwing a hot chick isnt punishment for her but pleasure, she doesnt deserve pleasure if she doesnt appreciate me.

    And you had ons confused with relationship, women did not say they would consider muscular men for a relationship but for a ons. But trust me when I start sarging, I will let those b—hes know how I feel that play those games with me.

  • Judson // Jun 8, 2012 at 10:52 AM

    To hell with me it’s all about her lol…unless she’s entirely superficial and vapid then it’s all about the next girl. I hate the gym yet I’ve been in it for 25 years…we all have our so called “ideal” attraction doesn’t mean that it is what they/we/I will settle for. To oversimplify the laws of attraction is limiting the human: we are far more complex. I have met women happy and content with the geek and miserable women with the jock: basing the argument simply on physical attraction is to simply identify the stimuli that we have all been conditioned by since we were children (we become it). We all have our ideal sexual attraction…but it doesn’t mean that it is what we “Need” but what we desire..”DESIRE” THE MURDERER OF LOGIC AND RATIONAL THOUGHT.

  • John // Jun 9, 2012 at 12:05 AM

    William’s, you may disagree, nonetheless, according to the vast majority of polls, women prefer toned / muscular physiques to how you described yourself “rail thin”..The point I was trying to make is that..

    In spite of the fact that women often settle for the average guy, as this article suggests, because they feel such guys are better for long-term, committed relationships than the handsome hunk / stud she is more physically attracted to..If they had a choice between an average joe and a handsome hunk-stud, who are both willing to commit themselves to her…

    She would choose the handsome hunk.

    Take you for example..You say you’re a handsome man who’s “rail thin”, well, you may not want to accept it, but another intelligent, handsome man like you with a good personality, that happends to also have a toned, muscular body, will have a much broader selection of women to choose from, than you do.

    A fat, out of shape, intelligent, handsome man, on the other hand, will in general, attract less women, than a thin handsome man, with the same personality traits..( intelligent, charismatic, funny, responsible..). In general, the ideal is an; intelligent, personable, responsible, handsome man, with a strong physique. A physique that biologically / chemically communicates :

    ” Our offspring will be strong, healthy and I will protect you. You’re safe with me. “.

    In our modern age, a man’s physique plays a lesser role in attracting women than it use to, but the biological, chemical response resulting from millions of years of evolution, is still present. Females are biologically attracted to strong male physiques.

  • Hans // Jun 17, 2012 at 2:24 AM

    Are you a scientist by any chance? I like your analyses! Women like to feel secure and protected. So at first glance, a muscular or tone man induces such impression in a woman. However, considering that most women like muscular and tone; they may fear that if they settle down with them other women who prefer the some type may make the relationship more difficult to maintain. Thus, when she wants to settle she may do so we a chubby as his competition is less and thus, will result in a relationship easier to maintain.

  • Alkan T. // Mar 22, 2016 at 8:13 AM

    And we insist on associating muscles with heterosexuality exclusively as if there aren’t men who like men and their muscular bodies and men who like to build their bodies to impress other men. In fact, none have been more appreciateive of a man’s body than men who like men.

  • Kate Andersom // Feb 28, 2017 at 11:34 AM

    Not all girls like muscular body types. Personally, I prefer slim built guys. I have no idea why. But men, don’t give up hope.

  • Lino // Jun 12, 2017 at 11:59 AM

    I’m muscular, and this has not been true for me in the least. Most girls I’ve seen, especially hot ones, are with less good looking guys who often have awful physiques.

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