Crack her up, bring her home. Being funny makes you more attractive to women, according to new research in Personality and Individual Differences.
In a small study, British researchers recorded 40 students describing which items they’d take to a desert island. Though they weren’t told to be funny, almost half of the students used humor in their answers. Then, 11 raters judged the undergrads’ recorded answers and attractiveness separately. The results: Men who were considered funnier were also more likely to be considered more attractive for short- and long-term relationships.
Researchers guess that women might seek funny guys for flings because it signals that they’re “not serious or willing to invest in a mate,” according to the study. But many women—regardless if they’re looking for a one-night stand or future husband—appreciate a comedian: In a survey of more than 1,000 American women ages 21 to 54, 77 percent of women ranked a sense of humor as their number one must-have in a man, beating out intelligence, passion, confidence, and generosity.
The problem? Being funny is easier said than done. While there’s research here and there about what kind of jokes kill with the ladies—one 2011 study found women are most attracted to men who use dry, sarcastic humor—comedy is hardly an exact science.
So we turned to real comedians for their advice on how to be a funny flirter. Use these words of wisdom to make her laugh so hard that she’ll have no choice but to come back to your place and catch the encore set.
The comedian: Jay Mohr, Saturday Night Live veteran and host of Jay Mohr Sports on Fox Sports Radio
His advice: Funny’s good, but funny and handsome is better.
“Women say they want a sense of humor, but let’s be honest: If you aren’t marginally handsome to begin with, you aren’t going to get within arm’s reach of the woman to show her your wit. Impressions are a complete and absolute no. No woman cares about Goodfellas, let alone wants to hear your re-enactment of the bar scenes over martinis. If you’re naturally funny and a little handsome, just be yourself. Don’t knock yourself down too much. A great woman will enjoy knocking other people down with you.”