by Christiana Mbakwe
Someone once asked me:
“Christiana do you have any advice on how as a woman I can get a guy I am
interested in to be more than just friends? I need help…”
The question of ‘how to attract the man you want’ is one that has plagued women
for decades (I’d say centuries, but my history knowledge is limited). Almost
weekly I get asked this very question! Thus far I’d been reluctant to attempt to
write on it because…
1) The little part of me that’s a feminist wouldn’t allow me to. I think we
women spend a disproportionate amount of our time worrying about whether what we
project is what people (well, men) perceive as attractive. Consequently our
self-esteem and sense of identity is often wrapped up in what others think of
us, not what we believe about ourselves. Part of me believed that by writing on
this subject I would be perpetuating another (more serious) problem, rather than
solving the question being asked.
2) Coming up with an answer would imply that I think I’m some sort of authority
on attracting men.I can assure you I’m not and do not believe I am. My ‘man
history’ (is that the correct term?) is littered with idiots – if anything, my
advice should be discarded.
3) I think it’s a myopic question. Attracting a man (whether by internal or
external beauty) doesn’t mean much. It’s keeping him that matters! If I’d
figured out ‘how to keep a man’, I’d be a millionaire not a (recovering)
shopaholic avoiding her bank statements (screw you, Santander).
Nevertheless I made a genuine attempt to answer this question.
I contemplated asking for my mother’sopinion and input. But then I realised her
advice would be far too tactless.
Sidebar: She recently said to me – “All the time you’ve spent blogging, if you
were focused, you would have found a good husband by now and moved out. I need
that spare room”.
Since my mum would probably only get involved if I paid her (cash, phone cards,
facials and doing the cooking are her currency of choice), I thought I’d attempt
an answer by drawing inspiration from the spirit of my mother and other
matriarchs I admire. I also have many friends (current and former) who manage to
effortlessly attract ‘calibre men’. So I thought I’d attempt to give five
practical steps based on what I’ve observed them do!
Sidebar: Some women desire felons whose only accessory is an electronic tag,
whilst others believe a millionaire is the standard. I realise the ‘calibre man’
is a relative construct and we all want to attract something slightly different.
Therefore I’ve made this as generic as possible!
5 Ways to ‘Attract’ A Man….
(I’d like to reiterate – this is about attracting, not keeping a man!)
1) Look Good
I remember years ago (I was about 10 or so), my mum took a young woman aside,
and told her to lose weight, take better care of herself and put on her pancake
(her term for makeup), otherwise she’d never find a husband. I remember dying
inside from the sheer embarrassment and thinking that she should have said
nothing! In hindsight I realise my mum was right and did that woman a favour.
Taking care of how you look externally is crucial to attracting men. Having a
sense of pride and confidence in one’s appearance is a component of having a
healthy relationship with yourself. I don’t even think women should do it for
men; we should do it for ourselves!
The bottom line is this: ‘looking good’ doesn’t require that much effort. It all
boils down to four things…
*Maintaining a healthy weight
*Neat hair and eyebrows
*Wearing nice clothes that suit your physique
2) Be friendly and courteous
How many women miss this? Just smile for crying out loud! Even if he’s not your
type and looks like a cross between a donkey & iguana he’s human too (I hope)
and deserves respect.
In times gone past I’ve unintentionally radiated ‘uber bitch’. And although
being an uber bitch can come in handy, when trying to attract men it’s probably
the worst thing you can be.
3) Be unafraid to stand (or go out) alone
Women in massive groups = turn off.
Women in pairs = gives the impression that one (or both) of the women are in a
relationship and someone’s acting as a buffer.
Women standing/sitting alone = Wide open (metaphorically speaking lol!)
80% of the time I’m approached by a man, it’s because I’m on my stiletto break.
Sidebar: Stiletto break = Part of the night when I sit down to ensure my
criminally high heels don’t put me in a wheelchair.
After realising that every time I’m alone I get chatted up, I did a bit of
research and it turns out a woman flying solo exudes a certain confidence and is
more likely to attract men.
(I’m lying. I’ve done no research, I’m just trying to add some reliability to my
That being said the type of woman fearless enough to go out alone, without back
up, is the type of women unafraid to approach a man herself…. (whole other
Drop the clique (nights out with big groups of women always end up engulfed in
petty politics anyway).
Go out alone (do steps 1+2) and watch them flock.
4) Have something (but not too much) to say
I think as women we’re socialised into (overly) understating our intelligence or
acting like ‘Barbies’ that behave in a coquettish manner. Both become boring
(very quickly). A woman must be able to conduct a decent conversation.
Contrarily (as I’ve been warned too many times) she mustn’t seem overbearing or
5) Don’t act desperate
Desperate, needy, thirsty women who offer themselves on a plate to anyone that
appears to have an XY Chromosome lose (in the short and long run). Doing 1-4 yet
(ironically) being completely indifferent to whether they work is the secret
ingredient that too many of us miss.
So there it is…my list!
Your thoughts please : ) Especially the men reading – anything I’ve missed?
Christiana Mbakwe is a graduate of University College London, and a freelance
writer and blogger based in London, England. Her blog, ‘Christiana Rants’
(www.christianarants.com), explores the issues young women grapple, yet are
often reluctant to publicly discuss. Follow her on Twitter at @Christiana1987.