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Why women think narcissistic men are sexy

Ladies love guys who love themselves — at least at first, study suggests

By Joy Jernigan - MSN Living Editor May 6, 2013 6:54PM

man and womanGuys, if you want to pick up women, it helps to be a narcissist.

Women find such men more attractive as sexual partners, according to a recent study in the Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin.

In the study, Michael Dufner of Humboldt University in Berlin and colleagues set out to test whether narcissistic individuals — those who have traits such as an “unrealistically positive self-view, a strong self-focus, feelings of entitlement, and a lack of regard for others” — were appealing as short-term romantic or sexual partners. Researchers also wanted to see whether physical attractiveness and high social boldness — traits linked to narcissism — contributed to mate appeal. For the study, Dufner and his colleagues relied on ratings of members of the opposite sex, ratings of friends and records of courtship outcomes.

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Researchers then recruited 61 heterosexual men and sent them out into the streets of a large German city to pick up 25 women they would “genuinely like to get to know better” and get their contact information.

Their findings: “The higher participants’ narcissism, the more personal contacts they received from unacquainted women and the more appealing they were rated by these women.”

“It was interesting to see that these effects were not due to self-esteem,” Dufner said. “It was really narcissism that was attractive.”
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While narcissists might get more phone numbers, previous research has shown that they tend to be less successful at long-term relationships, said Susan Krauss Whitbourne, a  psychology professor at the University of Massachusetts Amherst who wrote about Dufner’s study in her blog on Psychology Today.

“Because their long-term prospects in relationships tend not to be very good, narcissists become the masters of the good first impression,” she writes. “They know how to manipulate their own self-presentation so that they seem desirable and attractive.” 

In other words, “these are the people who are OK on one date, if that,” Whitbourne said.

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Photo: Chris Clinton/Getty Images

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136Comments
May 7, 2013 11:09PM
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They sent these men out into the streets to meet women.  I'm wondering if they were picking up these women in bars.  In that case, the odds were better that they were finding women that were looking for a quick fling instead of those looking for a steady committed relationship.  It reminds me of a conversation I read in a book once. A foreign man was claiming that all American women are sluts.  His sister pointed out to him that when he was in America and wanted to go out to meet women the only places he went to look for them were seedy clubs. 
May 7, 2013 9:08PM
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I don't know what's up with guys like me who are only interested in the really certifiably insane ladies. Forget narcisissm.

May 7, 2013 6:56PM
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"Researchers then recruited 61 heterosexual men and sent them out into the streets of a large German city to pick up 25 women"  

Male German Pick-Up Line: "You must be from Berlin, cause baby you're the Bomb"

May 7, 2013 6:49PM
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“unrealistically positive self-view, a strong self-focus, feelings of entitlement, and a lack of regard for others” 

"Researchers then recruited 61 heterosexual men and sent them out into the streets of a large German city to pick up 25 women"  

Results:

German women dig Nazis.

36 German men go home empty handed.

"Sheisse!"

 

May 7, 2013 5:25PM
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While there are certainly true narcissists out there, women should realize that a man who has his own personality, his own dreams and aspirations, who has better things to do with his time than constantly flatter a woman's fragile little ego, and who doesn't always do what a woman says, immediately, without complaint, and who doesn't care to sit around pontificating with her about the supposed infinite complexities of her supposedly wonderful personality....these things alone don't quality as narcissism. ;)
May 7, 2013 5:05PM
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That's funny. My "type" has changed drastically in the last 14 years. I don't even technically have one any more. I don't care if you are confident, unsure, tall or short, light or dark... as long as you have intelligence and a sense of humor. In fact, the love of my life is a man that, three years ago, I dismissed on sight because while physically attractive, he didn't seem to be the kind of man I would want to be with. A week later, after getting to know him a little, I realized I had judged him too quickly, and took a chance. It's been an extremely tumultuous time, and harder than I ever tought these things should be, but well worth the effort and dedication.

Women, and men, should not be lumped into these categories or let themselves be told what it is they like or feel, just because some idiots with nothing better to do ask a bunch of questions.

Think for yourself.

Sapere Aude.

May 7, 2013 4:28PM
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Ego trips, men.  One in the same.
May 7, 2013 3:53PM
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"Why women think narcissistic men are sexy"...

Simple answer: they're whores whose genes are still stuck in the Stone Age.

Long answer: they're whores whose genes are still stuck in the Stone Age.
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