Nice Guys Actually Don't Finish Last -- If You Give Them Enough Time

couple walking on the beachAs many of us already know, there is much more to relationships than love at first sight, and now researchers have proven it.

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While previous studies found that 33 percent of men and 43 percent of women reported falling for someone that they weren't initially attracted to, this new study, published in the journal Psychological Science, looked at what explains "assortive" versus "non-assortive" mating behaviors. In non-researcher lingo, they were looking for data to answer that age-old question: How does a regular-looking person end up with a total hottie?

The researchers looked at 167 couples, some of whom were deemed to be well matched in terms of physical attractiveness and some of whom clearly had one partner who was objectively more attractive than the other. What they found: Couples who knew each other briefly before coming together were more likely to be matches in terms of looks (an "8" and a "9," for example). The couples who had long relationships before becoming a couple had more mismatches (think a "6" and a "10").

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So, what does this mean if you're single and looking for love? Well, the nice but average-looking guy who you've put firmly in the "friend zone" might end up becoming more attractive to you the longer you get to know him. It could also mean that your crush on the person who is "out of your league" might not be hopeless after all. Time, and your own awesome personality, could be on your side.

Given the rising popularity of online dating, where so much rides on first impressions based on pictures, the findings of this study suggest that you might want to take a closer look at the dating prospects whose looks may not have instantly attracted you. There may be some diamonds in the rough that start to shine the longer you know them!

If you're single, how do you feel about being pursued by guys who are less attractive ... or pursuing guys who seem much more attractive than you are? If you're attached, do you think you and your spouse are equally matched?


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