Physical Attraction, Sexiness and Health…The Female Edition

Karolina Kurkova

What makes a woman sexy?

According to Wikipedia, physical attractiveness is the perception of the physical traits of an individual human person as pleasing or beautiful. It can include various implications, such as sexual attractiveness and physique and blah, blah, blah, blah and blah.

Who would have thought that a discussion of what makes a woman sexy could be this boring? But wait, it gets better.

Judgment of attractiveness of physical traits is:

  1. partly universal to all human cultures
  2. partly dependent on culture or society or time period, and
  3. partly a matter of individual subjective preference

So, what part is universal to all human cultures?

That’s what we’re really talking about.

karolina-kurkova-feetPersonally, I couldn’t care less about your “individual subjective preferences” I know a guy with a serious thing about feet.

But somehow, I don’t think most people are going nuts about Karolina Kurkova’s little piggies….but then again

And, in regards to culture, society and time period: like it or not, American/Western culture has spread all around the globe. Individual languages and cultures are being swallowed up each and every day. The same probably holds true for our global definition of sexiness.

So, I ask again, what makes a woman sexy?

According to the sexperts:

  • It all comes down to makin’ babies. Somewhere deep in our ancient, lizard brains, there is a blueprint for the ultimate Baby Mama.

And that blueprint includes:

  • Facial Symmetry – a marker of good health
  • Full lips – a marker of youth
  • Waist to Hip Ratio – more good health
  • Upper Arm Circumference – granny arms do not qualify as sexy
  • Body Mass proportion – another marker of good health
  • Smooth Skin – youth & health
  • Clear Eyes – youth & health
  • Lustrous Hair – youth & health
  • Muscle Tone – youth & health
  • Breast Size – there are a whole hosts of theories on this one
  • Erect Posture – another health marker
  • Height – men prefer women shorter than themselves…must be an ego thing

2008 World’s Sexiest Women

(according to E!)
1. Karolina Kurkova
1. Karolina Kurkova

Waist to Hip Ratio – check-mark

2. Bar Rafaeli
2. Bar Rafaeli

Erect Posture – check-mark

3. Angelina Jolie
3. Angelina Jolie

Facial Symmetry – check-mark

4. Gisele Bundchen
4. Gisele Bundchen

Clear Eyes – check-mark

5. Scarlett Johansson
5. Scarlett Johansson

Breast size – check-mark

6. Adriana Lima
6. Adriana Lima

Full Lips – check-mark

7. Heidi Klum
7. Heidi Klum

Muscle Tone – check-mark

8. Penelope Cruz
8. Penelope Cruz

Smooth Skin – check-mark

9. Manuela Arcuri
9. Manuela Arcuri

Body Mass proportion – check-mark

10. Shakira
10. Shakira

Lustrous Hair – check-mark


And what does all of this have to do with health & fitness?

Glad you asked


When it comes to physical attractiveness, none of these women are relying on just one of characteristics listed above. They pretty much won the genetic lottery as it applies to physical beauty.

But, like all of us, they will get older.

And since so much of beauty is tied to the appearance of youth and health, unless they work at it, their beauty will fade.

And what about us mere mortals?

We all weren’t born to be fashion models or sex symbols.

True, but you can all take advantage of the new research being done to keep us looking better, feeling better and living longer than ever before.

And in the next few posts, I will outline some of that research and show you how you can incorporate it into your lifestyle.

Stay tuned.

(and ladies…I will be doing a Male Edition)


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  1. During the course of my days, I tutor, in reading and writing, two 9th grade boys who happen to homeschool. I’m always looking for interesting books that they’ll enjoy but have substance, character, plot, and of course, a theme.

    The book we are currently reading is called, “Uglies” by Scott Westerfeld. Interestingly enough, it’s based on the future. Society as we know it is gone, and somehow, the current society now “makes” everyone “pretty” as soon as they turn 16.

    The idea of an entire society based on everyone being pretty is fairly novel. Who determines what pretty is? I haven’t finished the book yet, but it’s definitely worth a look.

  2. As Kelly pointed out above, symmetry appears to be a universally attractive feature, as does skin clarity.

    These both make sense in evolutionary terms as they’re markers of good health. However I think beyond that you’ll find tremendous variation in what people find attractive across the other features.
    While the waist to hip ratio is fairly consistent, the preference for a thinner look is a recent thing.

    Look at playboy models from the 60-present. You’ll find the older ones look positively chubby by today’s standards, and that they get progressively thinner with each decade.

    That said, personally I can’t stand the model look and am rather unimpressed with the airbrushed people above – I think they look like they could use some muscle on their arms and legs and perhaps a sound meal. While I like breasts as much as the next guy, I’m still confused how anyone can actually like the huge silicon enhanced ones.

    Now serious female athletes on the other hand….

  3. Great point Chris,

    None of these physical characteristics are absolutes. Preference for WHR varies between cultures. Same for breast size, muscle tone, etc…

    In low income countries, men are more likely to prefer heavier women…as extra weight is a sign of relative affluence. In high income countries, lean bodies are generally preferred.

    I think where this list is most accurate is in the characteristics that best represent health & virility

  4. I think a person who lives healthy is way more attractive, and usually good health shows on the outside. I look forward to your male-oriented post. I also concur with attractiveness varying from culture to culture, and time period to time period. I prefer a thin, lean man over a fat guy. But if he doesn’t also have a great sense of humor, a high level of intelligence, and compassion, then I’m not going to like him anyway. But that doesn’t mean I’d date a guy who’s totally physically let himself go JUST because he has a good personality. It has to be the whole package to work for me 🙂

  5. Good post. But I need to you DR, in Arab countries some men prefer big women and Arab countries are hardly low income.

  6. But these are subconscious feelings based on primitive urges, right? That’s the same kind of thought process that suggests that men are not supposed to be monogomous, hence their desire to cheat with many partners. The key is to decide for one’s self consciously, as in overriding the subconscious, if monogomy or a thick-haired blue eyed girl is what’s best for you and then *choosing* to act accordingly. I understand the point of your post, I just don’t feel that baser animal instincts or the desire to snag a man ought to be primary motivators for achieving a healthy WTH ratio.

  7. I find it really sad that soooo many guys find a girls breasts the sexiest and most attractive part of their body. I hate it. Im personally quite “flat” and it really puts me down. And you know what annoys me the most? That they dont care about your beauty inside or out. They just want huge tits. You know, i even once heard a group of guys comparing their girlfriends breasts? it DISCUSTS me.

  8. well..i think all the above traits are imp to look sexy..however, i think its all about how u carry urself, how u talk and walk, and off course wit and sense of humor + a sexy mind 🙂

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