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Why Pick-Up Lines Are Never Going to Work

This is an age old story, and for some reason guys are still trying the same old thing, and expecting different results. You go to a bar, or a nightclub and you see a hot woman seated up at the bar alone. As you steel yourself and your nerves, give a quick run of your fingers through your hair, you approach her ready to lay your million dollar lines down. Here’s the truth though, not only are they more like one cent lines, but she’s already made her decision about you before you’ve even spoken a single word. Psychology professor Monica Moore speaks to this in her book, “Sex: A Man’s Guide” that the woman you’re practicing those lines on as you walk up has already decided whether she’s going to sleep with you within the first few seconds upon meeting you.

Because this is true, we have to examine why she’s going to reject you instantly to better understand the situation. Rejection in and of itself, isn’t the problem, and quite possibly neither are you. Here’s some of the top reasons why women might turn a guy down before he’s really even had a chance. First of all, presentation factor is huge. A woman wants to see that a guy can take care of himself, and value his appearance. She’s even looking for a bit of swagger, so walk like you own the place, or don’t expect to have company on your arm as you leave. She’s going to notice things like bad breath, or poor teeth, and especially body odor or the opposite – too much cologne. If you just “wing it” when you go out, and wonder why you can’t seem to get so much as a call back from a girl, you might want to re-think your grooming habits. Also, dress appropriate to your environment. If you’re at a country bar, wear a stetson, blue jeans and cowboy boots, but if you’re at a high end nightclub, try looking at the gentleman’s magazine GQ for some style tips on what would fit in and more – attract notice.

Another reason fits in nicely with that whole swagger bit, if you don’t have it you’re not going to walk like you do, or present well. A lack of confidence shows from a mile away and women are keenly attuned to sense this. There’s also the last big three reasons. If she’s a co-worker or someone you have known socially, a friend of a friend perhaps, be mindful that she might not wish to mix business with pleasure, hurt a friend, or she may have been fresh from a breakup (which, if you’re close to her, you should know) and it just comes across as really bad timing. You may also just be not her type. A woman usually has the image in her mind of the man she wants to be with, and if you don’t match this dream image she’s got concocted, it’s never going to go far no matter how smooth you are. Keeping your body in good shape, and having good hygiene helps plenty, but if you’re not the height she goes for, or your hair or eyes are the wrong color; if you remind her of her brother, sorry bud – it’s never going to work. The last one is maybe the biggest, and one that men never believe when they hear it but still have to respect. She’s already taken. There’s nothing we can do about this one, and shouldn’t want to anyway, coming between a relationship – even one that is in trouble is never a good idea.

Now lets take a closer look at those million dollar lines that men seem to like using, thinking that they’re going to work… after all, they did for your buddy right? There might just be a very good reason it worked for him but wouldn’t for you, and knowing is half the battle. Our culture is now so highly advanced that women aren’t just equals with men, they’re empowered, and they know it. When you use a pickup line on a modern woman, she’s going to think one of two things. “Is he drunk?” or “You must be joking, what an ego” neither of which are fruitful for your cause. If you want to make an impression, used up lines just aren’t going to cut it.

A 2002 article from the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology revealed something we really should already know. Pickup lines make us sound really stupid. The article states that “relationship initiation strategies” that involve a washed up line, cause women to lower their estimation of a man’s intelligence. Bad news for us, because that’s one of the top necessities women look for in her ideal man. They’re also not conversation starters. Pickup lines are typical one-liners, they don’t end in a question mark but a period, often followed by really awkward silence, or laughter…neither of which is great. You’re far better off asking her about something within the environment she’s in to lead her into open conversation.

Unless you’re into the whole stalker thing, you might re-think using lines also, because no woman who’s not already drunk has ever been comfortable after hearing one. Another study in 2009 from the Journal of Social Psychology found that men who use “flippant” pickup lines are instantly classed as untrustworthy, and sexual innuendo ranked near the bottom of 40 differing approach topics in effectiveness. You’re even better off just walking up and introducing yourself than you would be using a line on her. Speaking of things that are just a bit sleazy here, if you DO find a girl who is receptive to a pickup line, you might check out this study from the University of Edinburgh that shows the sort of girl who is likely to fall for a line, is also the same sort of girl who probably isn’t picky about who she’s having sex with period – if you have a heartbeat, you’re in. This same study suggests these women are also mostly the kind to be depressed, tired, or desperate, none of which rank too high on the “good idea” scale.

Recall that bit earlier where we said that your good buddy reported this great line working for him just last weekend, and told you that you’d have to give it a go? There’s plenty of studies that back this one, just take your pick from Google. If you’re extremely attractive, well groomed, wearing expensive looking clothing, and have a sparkle in your eyes and a smile that would melt polar ice caps, it doesn’t really matter what you say. In sheer terms of making a decision within seconds of meeting a guy, model-worthy good looks make a huge difference. Your buddy might just be attractive enough to pull it off. But do him a favor, and let him know it’s not those witty lines, and maybe help steer him in the right direction.

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