Why Women are Attracted to Older Men

by Eric Disco
Jul 30

“Wearing a white shirt in the rain. Women are staring at my chest,” I text her.

“C’mon,” she texts back. “Can you blame them for ogling?”

She gets the joke immediately.

If she had sent me a text that men were ogling her chest, it would not have been funny. It could have been true.

The other way around? Not so much.

Why is it ridiculous when I say it but not when she does?

Neko Case, once voted by Playboy as the Sexiest Babe in Indie Rock, is now 40 years old.

She laments that female rock stars don’t get groupies, unlike their male counterparts.

“No, ladies in bands don’t get ANY action,” she says. A chorus of female rock stars chime in to agree with her.

The reason that male rock stars are more likely to get throngs of groupies is the same reason that women are less likely to ogle men’s bodies.

Women are attracted to very different things than men are.

All of my friends who are decent with women would agree that their age is hardly a liability in attracting and dating younger women.

There are certain venues where age is prohibitive, such as online dating, where women seeking out men will filter based on logical preference.

But in person, a 25-year-old woman is just as likely to respond to a 40-year-old man as she is to a 25-year-old man.

And this is not simply conjecture by friends of mine with inflated egos.

It’s science.

There is a very specific reason why women are attracted to older men and not the other way around.

At Colgate University, a study was conducted where 300 male and female students rated facial features that were subtly altered on Identi-Kit models.

Identi-Kit is used by police to build pictures of sought-after persons.

Facial composites constructed from Identi-Kit materials were used to assess the impact of characteristically mature and immature eyebrows, eyes, lips, and jaws on perceptions of social dominance and attractiveness. Male and female faces were identically composed except for hair.

Subjects rated faces on scales for dominance and attractiveness. Mature traits were hypothesized to make all faces look dominant and male faces appear attractive. Female faces were predicted to look attractive when displaying immature, nondominant facial cues.

The results confirmed that mature traits generally raised dominance and attractiveness ratings for male faces.

The traits that successfully raised dominance ratings for male faces made females look less attractive. Eye size had the most reliable effect on both dominance and attractiveness ratings for female faces. Eyes that make females look nondominant also made them look attractive.

The reason that women are attracted to older men and men are less likely to be attracted to older women: dominance.

Dominance is an aphrodisiac for women.

In animals, physical and social traits identify dominance in males.

Social dominance is measured by success in attracting mates and forming coalitions with other males. In other words: high status. The rock star.

Physical markers indicating dominance differ in species and include things like horn size in sheep and graying in gorillas. Physical dominance markers often coincide with age markers.

In primates, the “square jaw” is attractive because primates with fully-developed teeth have a stronger jaw and they can use those teeth to intimidate other individuals.

As men age, they are more likely to achieve higher social status and be socially dominant. This makes men more attractive as they get older.

However, dominant attributes, such as a square jaw and rock star status, only benefit males when it comes to attraction. Females tend to attract mates via the “cute response.”

Infantile features such as thick lips and large eyes are appealing because they stimulate the caretaking response.

When maintained into adulthood, these physical attributes are attractive because they display youth and nondominance.

The fact that men are much more sensitive to youth and physical beauty is not surprising. After a certain age, women are completely unable to reproduce, where as men are physically able to reproduce their entire lives.

The differential expression of attraction between men and women reflects that.

You could almost write it on a greeting card: I get sexier as I get older. For men, at least, it’s true.


posted in Attraction

1 response
Milo says:

Then why do women in the US marry men who are only 2.5 years older on average? Marriages with a large age difference are much more likely to end in divorce, as well (older women & younger men being an exception, for some weird reason. Maybe because they’re less likely to go through the stresses of having children together?)

& Sure, most adult men of all ages are attracted to younger women. That’s normal. But if a guy only wants to date significantly younger women, unless he’s very charming, & looks young for his age, he is most likely going to be lonely. & a more discerning young woman may wonder what it is about him that women closer to his own age won’t put up with. I’ve personally seen a lot of coercive control in relationships with a 10+ year age gap.