Beer goggles, the preferred eyewear of those who frequent bars and clubs at around two in the morning, have often been blamed for the peculiar hookups that seem to take place in the wee after-hours. The term “beer goggles” refers to the theory that, when a person drinks too much alcohol, those around him or her begin to look better and better. This theory has been counted on by those seeking a hookup for decades, but the question is, does the phenomenon really exist?
An article in The Daily Mail Online talks about a study done by a researcher from Leicester University, who apparently found that, contrary to previous study results, men did not find women any more attractive after drinking. But wait – before average-to below-average-looking women begin hurling themselves off of buildings or collecting cats, bear in mind that, even if beer goggles don’t exist, drunk men will still be hitting on women of all shapes and sizes just like they always have, and there may be other explanations for it.
How does male attraction work?
It would be great to say that men, in general, are deep intellectual creatures who look past the physical attributes of a woman completely and see them as the beautiful, intelligent, and spiritual beings that they are. Unfortunately, this isn’t always true, at least not when a man is “on the hunt.” The good news is that men in general are not nearly as picky as most women think they are.
A comedian once claimed that if any man went to a strip club and saw an 80 year-old stripper with sagging breasts in a bikini and she asked “Do you want to see ‘em?” his response would be a dejected “Yeah, I do.” That is not too terribly far from the truth. Men are fascinated by women’s bodies, and they don’t have to be perfect, or even close to it, to attract even a sober man’s attention.
Men have the unique ability to focus on singular favorable characteristics, like the legs or the breasts, to the exclusion of all others. This means a woman doesn’t have to be perfect to attract a man – she just has to have a nice rack, a “bedonkadonk” butt, or even really exceptional ankles.
How does alcohol affect inhibitions?
Where did this theory about women becoming more attractive to men after a few drinks come from? Most likely it came from observed behavior – men tend to be more likely to approach women, no matter how beautiful they are, after they have a few drinks in them.
Why, then, do men seem to approach less attractive women after drinking? Maybe the “liquid courage” only goes so far. It takes a whole different level of false bravado to approach a supermodel than it does to approach a librarian.
How does desperation affect attraction?
Usually, a guy will not be good and drunk until near the end of the night. There is another phenomenon that also occurs late in the evening – all the good ones are taken. The alpha males, the smooth talkers, the guys with game, have all paired up early in the evening, often with the best-looking women in the club.
This leaves two types of women in the club late: the ones who aren’t falling for the usual lines and the ones who are perceived as being less attractive. The women who don’t fall for lines early probably won’t fall late either, unless they have had a few drinks themselves and their inhibitions are lowered or the drunken sot in front of them happens to be exactly their type.
That leaves the perceived ugly ducklings behind and, knowing what we know about male attraction, a man who’s looking to hook up before closing time is going to find that mustachioed woman with the beautiful elbows he’s always dreamed about and see if he can take her home.
Does the effect of alcohol on women affect the mating dance?
If you ever want some real entertainment, go to a bar or club and just watch men approach women. In general, they are really bad at it – comically bad. Even intelligent men in positions of power and authority often become stammering idiots when trying to talk to a woman he doesn’t know in a social setting. If you neutrally observe these fumbling attempts to open a line of communication with a potential mate, you might start to wonder how the human species has survived as long as it has.
Enter our good friend, alcohol. If women are in a bar or club, it stands to reason that they are drinking, too. That same study from the Daily Mail Online found that women actually did start to find men more attractive after drinking. More importantly, women’s inhibitions are lowered just like men’s after drinking, so the likelihood of a hook-up increases significantly after alcohol is consumed on both sides.
The bottom line is that alcohol may not actually make women look sexier to men, but it does lead to the same end result. Men and women of all shapes, sizes, and levels of attractiveness are more likely to hook up when there is alcohol involved.