What Is Masculinity and What Masculine Traits Are Attractive to Women

What Is Masculinity

In today’s world of increasing acceptance of gender fluidity and decreasing emphasis on traditional masculine and feminine traits, many young people are finding it difficult to fit within the explicitly defined gender categories. Social constructionists firmly believe that traditional male and female roles in society are a social construct. Biology doesn’t necessarily determine emotional and behavioral response.

The personalized definition of masculinity has led people to wonder whether they’re masculine or not. They have no socially determined standards to aspire to.

Millions of years of evolution have led to distinct biological and mental differences in males and females, but despite that, it’s upon the individual to transcend the biological differences and participate in interchangeable responsibilities.

Masculinity icons floating through air

What is Masculinity?

True masculinity is not defined as the opposite of feminine, but is defined by the traits that have come to the surface after thousands of years of evolution. There’s no disputing the fact that males differ biologically from females. They have higher levels of testosterone, stronger muscles, and different brain structures.

Real masculinity is when a man doesn’t shy away from a challenge because he fears the outcome. It’s his ability to put one foot in the world of chaos and effectively deal with the malevolence and suffering from his shoulders back and head held high.

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At the core of what it means to be masculine is the ability to fight a battle. The persistent threat of danger that existed at every step before the dawn of civilization, it was men who went out to battle to protect their families.

But in today’s world that persistent threat has taken a different form. Your battle can be anything from growing your business to taking care of the homeless in your community. It’s your reason to get out of bed in the morning, to keep on striving toward achieving an ideal that would discourage most.

Masculinity is also defined by the propensity of living an adventurous life. Historically, men have been subjected to high stress and adrenaline rushes that drove them to consider it as giving their life some meaning. Today, men pursue their need for an adrenaline rush by driving race cars, wrestling and competing in aggressive sports.

For a more concise and narrow definition of masculinity, it’s necessary to talk about what masculinity isn’t rather than what it is. Masculinity isn’t a substitute for power, but a characteristic. As some would have you believe, men are not inherently greedy for power, sex and money.

Masculinity isn’t the lack of sensitivity. Real men are in touch with their emotions, they know that it’s okay to cry and be vulnerable.

They aren’t defined by their aggressive temperament; rather they’re defined by controlled and checked aggression that can be directed and used only when necessary, such as in situations where someone is threatening to cause harm to you or your loved ones.

To be supporting, caring and loving, despite having the ability to be a jerk and oppress others is what it means to be a real man.

‘Hegemonic masculinity’ is characterized by dominant males occupying positions of power in the patriarchal hierarchy and oppressing women using their social status. The idea of hegemonic masculinity can help us understand how not to use biological differences as an excuse to oppress others.

The idea of masculinity being equated with power to oppress others is an indication of our responsibility to acknowledge the fact that you can be a man without exhibiting these toxic qualities.

Are Masculinity and Manliness the Same Thing?

People often use the terms ‘masculinity’ and ‘manliness’ interchangeably. It’s important to understand the difference between these terms and use them appropriately.

Masculine traits can be embodied by females, sometimes much more effectively than some men. Conversely, males can embody feminine traits as well. Contrary to popular opinion the traits are not exclusive to a certain sex.

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Masculinity is the set of traits that are most commonly found in men due to the effects of hormones and brain physiology. Even though the traits are on average exhibited mostly by men, it’s only due to their biology and not their innate personality. One side of the argument postulates that it’s the hormones running through male bodies are responsible for the highly masculine traits that are exhibited.

Among these traits are the ability to be aggressive, violent, competitive, risk-taking and courageous. But this isn’t what it takes to be a real man. To be a real man is the ability to suppress that aggression and propensity for violence in a disciplined and responsible manner.

A lot of people have taken the ideological stance of proving masculinity to be something evil or bad. In reality, these traits are biological and are hardwired into males. They can’t be denied.

There are certain situations in which these masculine traits are desirable, such as during an attack from an outsider, a natural disaster, or a threat from a dangerous animal. Real men stand up and fight against the imminent threat with courage and strength because that’s what the situation demands.

We can’t shelter ourselves from the outside world and ward off external threats forever. Someone has to take the responsibility of dealing with them. If during difficult times men didn’t display the traditional masculine traits, we’d be much worse off as a society. This is what essentially defines ‘manliness’.

It would be better if we take a more understanding approach and try to incorporate masculinity in a responsible manner where the toxic traits aren’t characteristic of masculinity but the ability to recognize that biology doesn’t determine behavioral response is.

Masculinity can’t be evil or bad just as femininity can’t be toxic. Manliness transforms those traits into something worthy and useful.

There are times when men should use feminine traits to produce a desirable outcome in a certain situation. Vice versa, females can and do exhibit masculine traits when necessary. But the irresponsible, excessive and undirected use of these traits can be harmful. Unchecked aggression has huge observable and detrimental impacts on society.

In contrast, an excess in feminine traits such as nurturing and empathy can be harmful as well. The traditional image of the ‘overprotective mother’ is the perfect example of how feminine traits can cause harm as well if not exercised responsibly.

To sum it up, traits aren’t exclusive to any sex and both types should be accepted and incorporated to produce a safe and productive society. As long as a man is doing what’s required of him to protect his family, business, community, and the people he’s responsible for, he is acting in a manly manner.

That can also entail using feminine traits; a man utilizes all the tools at his disposal to get the job done.

Muscular blacksmith wearing apron holding hammer

What are the Masculine Traits?

There are a number of traits that are highly desirable in men. It’s best if you try to incorporate or develop these traits in your personality.

    1. 1. Responsibility

      Men are fully responsible for the direction their lives take. They own their problems and don’t blame others for their own failures. Whenever a problem presents itself, men are expected to step up and deal with it immediately.

      Men are expected to be problem-solvers. If a man is stricken by poverty or malevolence, there’s no room for him to cower behind an excuse. Take full responsibility for the issues in your life and deal with them head-on.

    2. 2. Rationality

      Men are logical thinkers and don’t let emotions get in the way of their problem-solving. They should have the ability to separate the best course of action from prejudicial biases.

      The truth takes the highest standard in their final analysis. A man utilizes his faculty of logic to guide his decisions and behavior. We have progressed as a society by being highly rational and facing the cold, hard facts about reality itself.

    3. 3. Strength

      The physical differences between males and females are definitely not a social construct and are backed up by tons of research. In fact, the very muscle fiber that constitutes the overall strength of an individual is different in males and females. These differences have come forward over thousands of years.

      That’s why males dominate competitive sports and voluntarily engage in back-breaking manual labor. No one expects females to work as coal-miners or firefighters because those occupations require intense physical strength and endurance. When the going gets tough, the tough get going.

Firefighter staring into fire blaze

  1. 4. Discipline

    Armies of the world are predominantly occupied by males. This isn’t a coincidence or a result of politically motivated forces. It’s the manifestation of the undeniable fact that men are socially conditioned to be disciplined.
    It’s one of the crucial masculine traits. If a man is undisciplined, he can’t maintain a routine or work schedule. Men need discipline in their lives.

  2. 5. Honor

    Honor is another positive masculine trait typical of well-rounded and adjusted men. The saying “I’m a man of my word” is a result of this honorable characteristic that defines men. If a man makes a promise you can be sure that he’ll live up to his words.

    Other positive masculine traits include being ambitious, easy-going, active, action-oriented and funny. There are also negative masculine traits that should be avoided at all costs. Being boastful, dominant, vain, indifferent, and compulsive are all common traits found in weak men.

How to Attract Women by Increasing your Masculinity

There’s no doubt that strong, confident, honorable, and competent men dominate the business world, but they’re also the ones who get the most women. And no, it’s not because women are only attracted to power and money. Rather, they’re attracted to strong masculinity.

They seek out the traits that they lack and try to find a partner who can help them maintain a positive balance by exhibiting those desirable traits in a relationship.

Be Responsible

Men who make a commitment and follow through with their word are highly attractive to females. A responsible man emits a positive signal that signifies his ability to take on a difficult challenge. Entering a relationship is also somewhat of a challenge on a different level.

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Men who take responsibility in other aspects of their life are likely to take responsibility for their relationship, maintain it and bring the best forward. Women also expect responsible men to take care of them and her children, instead of leaving them at the first sign of trouble.

Strong man holding happy family on back

Develop Strength

Every woman wants to be swept off her feet, both metaphorically and literally. A man who isn’t strong physically is not an attractive option for women.

You need to be strong enough to hold your own in a physical altercation. So hit the gym with consistency and start eating healthy until you’re sure you’ll be capable of protecting your woman.

Show Your Humorous Side

Another masculine trait that attracts women is the ability to be funny. Research has consistently shown that humor is among the top desirable traits that women want in their men.

The ability to crack a joke shows that you’re able to navigate your way around social interactions and are also able to handle stressful situations.

Be Confident

A display of self-confidence indicates the man’s ability to take control of a situation, make decisions under time pressure. Being around confident men makes women feel safer. It’s also an indication of the confidence a man has in his own ability to deal with various challenges.


To sum it up, manliness and masculinity are not interchangeable terms. Manliness is the ability to develop masculine traits in a responsible manner.

Research shows that men who exhibit the most positive masculine traits are ranked higher in attractiveness by females all around the world.

If you think women don’t find you attractive, it’s not the end of the world. By altering your habits and behaviors and aligning with traditionally masculine traits, you can become irresistible to women.

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