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A study of how much skin needs to be exposed in order to have the best chance of attracting men has found women who bared some 40% of their flesh to be the most alluring to men.

The University of Leeds conducted an observational study around the city’s nightclubs, with researchers discretely recording the level of skin exposed in each lady’s outfit, and asking how many times each lady was approached by a man. An uncovered torso counted for 50% exposure, each arm 10% and each leg 15%.

Those exposing approximately 40% of their body attracted twice as many men as those dressed more modestly, whilst those exposing more began to attract less. Tight clothing and provocative dancing also contributed to the effectiveness of this exposure.

The researcher responsible, Dr Colin Hendrie, writes in the journal Behaviour that excessive immodesty may signal unreliability:

“Any more than 40 per cent and the signal changes from ‘allure’ to one indicating general availability and future infidelity.”

In practical terms, this seems a long winded way of saying girls wearing short, sleeveless dresses do best in the typical nightclub meat market.

Of course, as with most “psychological” research, these results are unlikely to be applicable outside western nightclubs; they take no account of the fact that nightclub goers are hardly a representative sample, or what levels of exposure work in other environments (40% might be rather too modest for a beach), and doubtless the researchers would be astonished to learn there are cultures with radically different standards of modesty to that prevalent in UK nightclubs.

However, as a guide to sexy fashion they helpfully underline the insight that often less is more…


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