I have good news and bad news for “nice guys.” The bad news? Studies show that most women prefer dating “bad boys.” The good news? When women are ready to settle down, they choose the nice guys. 

Consider these recent studies:

What’s the draw of dating a rebel? 

  • Relationship experts at the University of Texas found that women are wired to be attracted to bad boys because they have hyper-masculine qualities, like being tough, aggressive and macho. And since the dawn of time, women have sought out men as ‘protectors.’ 

  • Another reason why bad boys are so attractive? They’re extremely confident. And surveys show that women consider confidence one of the most attractive qualities in a romantic partner.

Why do “nice guys” come up short in the dating world? 

  • First, it has to do with age and maturity. Younger women want men who are a challenge, because they’re insecure, and seeking approval. They also don’t want a nice guy because they’re not ready for that level of emotional intimacy. 

  • And the second reason nice guys finish last in the dating world: Because women perceive it as phony. No one can always be nice. So women subconsciously think the guy isn’t being “real,” and they instinctually don't trust that.

  • Also, nice guys don't set boundaries. And women don't respect men who behave like doormats, and that kills attraction.

But there’s good news for nice guys. While most women prefer bad boys for dating, over time, the attraction fades, and in the long run they prefer settling down with a nice guy. In fact, one study found that kindness is the most important quality women seek when choosing a long-term partner. And in a primal sense, women want a nice guy because he’s more likely to stick around to help raise children. 

However, the guy who wins the dating game, and the marriage game, has a balance between being kind and thoughtful, and being independent and spontaneous.