Secrets of Sex Appeal

September 28, 2017
Anna Jankowska, LCPC

By Anna Jankowska, MA, CEAP, SAP, LCPC

Anna Jankowska is a mental health, addiction, and substance abuse counselor with over 17 years of experience and has specialized training and skill in working with individuals, groups and communities to improve mental health outcomes. NPI number: 1598843526

We live in a day and age where sex appeal is everything. However, it is up for discussion for how it is defined. In today’s society, the media tells us how to alter our physical appearance, increase muscle tone, what clothing style is “in”, and how one should wear makeup. As a means to switch up society’s view on sex appeal, an article called, 4 Surprising Secrets of Sex Appeal, by Madeleine Fugère, opens up on ways to increase sexiness without any physical alterations.

Madeleine writes about secret number one as selflessness is sexy. According to research done in the article, helping can inspire a good mood, alleviate a bad mood, and increase the likelihood of reciprocal helping (see Kassin et al., 2011). The author continues by describing the physical attractiveness selflessness and helpfulness gives to potential partners. Furthermore, she explains how being helpful may signify both the presence of good genes and the willingness to share in resources and parental care. “In this research, individuals described as helping an elderly neighbor with shopping, mentoring children at a local school, or volunteering at a homeless shelter were consistently rated as more attractive than counterparts who engaged in behaviors not associated with helping (Fugère).

Secret number two is described as becoming a sexy stranger. This portion of the article talks about how while familiarity is desirable by most sexes long-term, meeting a stranger or strangers without any previous knowledge of who they are proved to be almost just as sexy. The author goes to say that woman tend to want more familiarity in a partner while men prefer unfamiliarity. She interpreted this information as “consistent with potential evolutionary benefits to men of mating with more than one partner.”

The third secret mentioned is get creative. It seems almost obvious on why this is an essential tool to sexiness but not all have the skill. The author writes how research done on creativity has been proven to be more attractive to potential partners rather than wealth. Furthermore, the author believes creativity signals good genes and intelligence. In addition, music tended to also be shown as a way to a woman’s heart. The article described a study done where men were more likely to get a woman’s phone number when they were carrying a guitar case rather than carrying a gym bag or nothing at all.

The fourth and final secret to sex appeal was listed as opening up. Not so much as sharing more about your life, but by body posture. According to the author, by opening up one can convey their romantic interest and even inspire romantic interest in others. Furthermore, posture is associated with confidence. The article illiterates how confidence is a crucial aspect of sex appeal in both woman and men, and posture has a lot to do with it. While a posture may signal dominance, it can also signify willingness to share with whomever they are in contact with (Lamb et al., 2015).


Kassin, S. M., Fein, S., & Markus, H. R. (2011). Social Psychology (8th ed.). Belmont, CA: Wadsworth, Cengage Learning.

Lamb, S., Farmer, K. M., Kosterina, E., Lambe Sariñana, S., Plocha, A., & Randazzo, R. (2016). What's sexy? Adolescent girls discuss confidence, danger, and media influence. Gender and Education, 28(4), 527-545.

Zajonc, R. (1968). Attitudinal effects of mere exposure. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 9(2, Pt.2), 1–27. doi:10.1037/h0025848.

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