The facts of life: Seduction

Sunday 14 September 2008 00:00

There are five main ways to tell if someone is flirting with you: their eyes will flit around your face and body; they begin to mirror your actions; they raise their eyebrows when they first meet you (ever so slightly); their feet and hands will point towards you subconsciously; and their pupil size and blink rate increases.

Flirting often goes unobserved by men, who are useless at spotting come-on signals. Scientists from Indiana University found that when men were shown images of women making an advance, they tended to see sexual cues as being merely friendly, and saw friendly gestures as showing sexual interest. Women performed far better at picking up on body language.

The summer months are the best time for seduction, according to a survey of 3,000 singles. Twice as many people get lucky during the summer as during the winter. Relationships that start between June and August also last an average of four dates, longer than the average for the other periods.

Women who read romance novels are more easily seduced than those women who don't, and have sex twice as often, a study found.

Casanova used to prepare a cup of hot chocolate for his prospective ladies in order to seduce them.

Good news for marathon runners: the most effective chat-up line of all is: "It's hot today, isn't it? It's the best weather when you are training for a marathon." That's according to 200 female students who were asked to rate 40 lines culled from the internet, films and television. It might be best to avoid "If you were a burger you'd be a McGorgeous", which ranked bottom.

Some men of the Mijikenda people in Kenya have reportedly been encouraging their wives to seduce other men, so they can cash in on the "malu" fine that the adulterous males must pay to them.

The British are the best at getting their fellow Europeans into bed, according to a survey conducted across the continent and it's all down to our sense of humour. However, respondents to the survey which also covered Germany, Spain, Italy and France said we are also the easiest to seduce. The Europeans least likely to pull successfully are the Germans, who were also voted the least attractive, yet most cultured. The best-looking are the Italians, while the French came out on top in terms of leading the most adventurous lives in the bedroom.

59 per cent of singles agree that bad body odour is the biggest turn-off on a first date, and the biggest turn-on is a sense of humour, according to a survey by the dating site

Male chimpanzees act much like humans when trying to seduce a mate. Stirling University research revealed that the chimps would often present the females with gifts, much like men use flowers in their efforts to woo their chosen one. The chimps stole fruit from nearby orchards and presented it to the females in exchange for sex and grooming.

According to Neil Strauss, author of The Game: Penetrating the Secret Society of Pick-up Artists, the best way for a man to seduce a woman is to insult her subtly when you first meet her. The technique is to "neg" her; that is, to deliberately "lower her self-esteem" by an apparently unintended insult that will leave her craving your approval.

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