The 215 men among the participants rated the inked bods as more attractive than tattoo-free comparison models, which presumably reflects in part what they think women are looking for in an ideal male partner.But the female participants didn’t rate the tattooed gentlemen as more attractive; moreover, they considered them worse prospects as partners and parents.Harry Styles is said to have over 40 of them, and he’s only 13. Sometimes the sexiest thing about a tattoo is simply the fact that the owner doesn't care what others think of it. If you saw the majority of tattoo imagery inside a picture frame, you’d dismiss it as very bad art indeed. Anthropologically speaking, tattoos are fascinating, and as self-expression goes it doesn't get much more tangible than puncturing a needle filled with indelible pigment into your body. Besides the immediate endorphine rush, I imagine that it's validating to commit yourself to such a palpable personal transformation.
Models from Heidi Klum to Gisele Bundchen reveal tattooed wrists on the red carpet. I can see the attraction of attempting to mould your external being to fit your idea of ‘the real you’. Yet in and of themselves there’s nothing attractive about tattoos.
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All in all, the women’s judgments were swayed by the (admittedly small) tattoos far less than were the male participants’ judgments.
Heterosexual men who are planning a trip to their local tattoo parlour might be surprised to learn from this research that their new ink is likely to cause a bigger stir among the gentlemen than the ladies.