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How does attraction work?

Last Update : November 29, 2016

There have been several studies and even more theories on how attraction works between two human beings. The answers try to respond the thousand of questions that come up when we try to explain the intangible phenomenon of attraction. A very complex subject which is not easily understood, although all the studies seem to go towards the same direction: at least attraction is easier than love.

Is attraction different according to the sex?

Apparently the “default” biological form of the brain is the feminine until the chromosome Y shows up to determine the masculine difference. Many scientists have tried to study the differences between female and male’s brains : do we really have different brains according to our gender? and if we do, are there different kinds of attraction according to gender?

According t a study published in the magazine Emotion, it seems that men and women respond completely different to emotions. Actually following the results of the study, it seems that the stereotypes that the ladies prefer “bad boys” to nice, smiley ones might be true… men seem to prefer smiley and nice ladies. The authors of the study have concluded that the reason behind this might be that a nice smile is the antidote against the feeling of being threatened and dominated.

Attraction… is it a cultural matter?

Throughout history, beauty standards have continuously changed. From the time in which being tanned meant being poor and having to work the field, to the overweight as a sign of health and power, attraction has been specifically defined at every cultural time by the cultural values at the moment. So, what’s attraction at the end?

The answer to that question might actually be in the intersection between two different variables: the cultural one y the physiological one. Even if we have already agreed that culture has a great responsibility into attraction, there’s another theory that thinks that actually pheromones are responsible for romantic attraction. 

According to this theory, we can subconsciously smell other people’s pheromones : we will feel deeply attracted to those that would complement our DNA in the best way possible.

After all, we all are animal that are just trying to avoid extinction: perhaps in that sense, attraction is our animal spirit being unveiled…