Why Do Girls Like Bad Boys? Secrets from the Science of Attraction

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It’s hormonal.

If you find yourself ogling the bad boy at the bar, you can blame your ovaries for that. According to research published in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology back in 2012, women, in the week of ovulation, “delude themselves into thinking that the sexy bad boys will become devoted partners and better dads,” said study researcher Kristina Durante of The University of Texas at San Antonio. “When looking at the sexy cad through ovulation goggles, Mr. Wrong looked exactly like Mr. Right.” That means, during a certain time of the month, women can’t help but be attracted to the bad boy. (Just another thing to blame your baby box for.)

As much as bad boys are downright hypnotizing, it’s important to note that their charming ways quickly wear out. Although bad boys find it relatively easy to begin new relationships, research says that, over time, they find it difficult to maintain their mesmerizing first impression. In fact, they’re noted to be selfish, cold, and arrogant—pretty much the opposite of who you thought they were. (Just be careful because it could take several weeks before your bad boy exposes his true self. That’s because people with dark personality traits are skilled at keeping their unpleasant side hidden.)

Bottom line: bad boys are great for a fling, and it’s only natural to be attracted to them. (It’s science.) But if you’re looking for a long-term relationship go for the nice guy.

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