Secret to Flirting Isn’t Good Looks, Says Study Just Finding Out About Pete Davidson

What do you think makes someone successful at flirting? Is it good looks? Wit? Intelligence? Humor? Well, some scientists wanted to find out, so they researched these questions in a new study published by Evolutionary Psychology.

A team of scientists surveyed 1,000 people from the U.S. and Norway. Respondents were asked if they longed for a long-term or short-term relationship, then ranked 40 different types of flirting based on effectiveness.

After controlling for religion, age, extroversion, attractiveness, and willingness to have a relationship, they found that your gender and what you want from a mate determine how you should flirt.

“What’s most effective depends on your gender and whether the purpose of the flirtation is a long-term or short-term relationship,” said Leif Edward Ottesen Kennair, a professor at NTNU’s Department of Psychology.

Women who are looking for a short-term relationship are most successful when they convey signals that they’re sexually available. Men looking for a long-term relationship were most effective when they showed signs of generosity and a willingness to commit.

But the key finding of the study? Humor works for everyone to some degree, no matter what the goal or the gender involved in the flirtation.

“People think that humor, or being able to make another person laugh, is most effective for men who are looking for a long-term relationship. It’s least effective for women who are looking for a one-night stand. But laughing or giggling at the other person’s jokes is an effective flirtation tactic for both sexes,” said Leif Edward Ottesen Kennair, a professor at NTNU’s Department of Psychology.

This will not come as a surprise for anyone who’s been following Pete Davidson – and the girls he’s bagged – lately. We figured humor had to play a part because there’s no way someone that ugly can nab fine-ass ladies like Ariana Grande, Kate Beckinsale, Kaia Gerber, and (ahem!) Kim Kardashian without a secret weapon.

So the next time you’re about to utter “Come here often?” at the bar, remember this study and tell her a joke instead.

Cover Photo: Bob Thomas (Getty Images)


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