Skinny Vs. Curvy: 10 Charts About Sex

OKTrends released a study last week after compiling observations and statistics from hundreds of millions of OkCupid users. The study features ten charts about sex.

Charts 7 and 8 plot “Women by Body Type: Sex Drive Vs. Self-Confidence”.  It features a dynamic chart that illustrates body type, sex drive, and self-confidence from age 18 to age 60. A  slider at the bottom moves to show that a woman’s sexuality peaks in her twenties, holds somewhat steady for 20 years, and then falls. And while sex drive ebbs and flows, self-confidence steadily grows.

The study also includes humorous elements.  For Chart 2, researchers took a single question—Is your ideal sex rough or gentle?—and searched profile text of men and women in their twenties for the words that most correlated to each answer.

Not surprisingly, the gentle folks’ “word clouds” included gardening, church and challenges. Whereas the rough sex folks’ words included obsessed, cynical and punk.

Review all ten charts here. I’m looking forward to your comments.

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Comments:

  1. 1
    Spiral

    I saw this chart too! It was truly fascinating. I was interested to see that curvy girls had lower self-confidence overall but that it fell LESS over time than skinny girls’ confidence.
    Also, interesting to note how the curvy/overweight survey sample size grew over time. We all gain weight, people! A great way to remind ourselves that it’s what’s inside that counts.

    The guys at OKCupid are doing some really fun things with math & dating. Who knew those could be combined so well?  :)

  2. 2
    starthrower68

    Spiral,

    You are correct in that the inside is what counts.  However, that is not how people are judged in a society where looks and body type determine one’s value in in the eyes of others.  I am by no means ugly, but I am overweight; I earn a bachelor’s degree with honors, am working on an MPA, am raising 3 excellent kids, have a good career, and belong to a faith community.  I get along well with most anyone and I like who I am.  But I don’t really date because I don’t fit the “archetype”.  I’m not entirely sure how I feel about it.  

    1. 2.1
      Evan Marc Katz

      @Starthrower - When you cite your credentials, it’s like you haven’t quite digested what I’ve been telling you for the past few years. Men (in general) don’t care if you “have a bachelor’s degree with honors, are working on an MPA, are raising 3 excellent kids, have a good career and belong to a faith community”. That’s how YOU define yourself. Men simply want you to be fun, happy, optimistic, easygoing, patient, accepting, nurturing, fun and sexy. If you are not those things, you will have a hard time dating, even if you’re the smartest, most accomplished, God-fearingest, best Mom in the whole world.

  3. 3
    starthrower68

    No Evan, I get it.  My point was actually that society generally sees overweight people as being stupid and lazy.  I know men could care less about my credentials, and that’s fine, they can ignore them all they want.

  4. 4
    hunter

    Allright EMK!!!, the paragraph you wrote to starthrower, can be rewritten, in bold letters, underlined twice!!!!

  5. 5
    Paula D

    I’m a curvy girl, not fat but with a couple extra pounds and have been told repeatedly by men that they don’t like skinny girls. Men do like fun and sexy even if you say NO (but say no with a bit of wit and style).
    Interesting to see that men, when they get older like rough sex, why would that be? Any older guys around who want to explain that? Have they lost all their youthfull romantic illusions? What’s the story guys.

  6. 6
    JerseyGirl

    Evan, add in that men also want you to be 10 years younger then themselves, thinner, cuter, hotter..and sure, I could agree with you. But men aren’t happy alone with “fun, happy, optimistic, easygoing, patient, accepting, nurturing and fun…” Too many average guys don’t appreciate women that our their equals. They want the bigger, better deal..all the while they desperatelly seek that “acceptance” and “patient” part. 

    On a side note, you put fun in there twice….so men must want twice the fun. :) Hehe.

    1. 6.1
      Evan Marc Katz

      @JerseyGirl: Agreed. And average women don’t appreciate average men who are their equals because they want him to be taller, smarter, stronger, and richer.

      So what are we going to do about it?

      You can a) complain about all the legitimate ways in which men fail you, or b) acknowledge and understand the hypocrisy of dating and try to be the woman who DOES accept the good man who isn’t necessarily the most impressive man.

      You know where I’ve got my money.

  7. 7
    starthrower68

    It’s not like I would go on a date and hand a dude my resume.  I try to be as witty and charming as possible.  But I’m not going to feel bad about who I am just because it doesn’t match someone else’s preferences. I am not responsible for what someone else desires.

  8. 8
    InsertPseudonymHere

    @Jersey

    I saw that too.  I really don’t have a clue but here is a speculation: maybe it is a generational thing rather than an aging thing. Or maybe their parts get number with age so they need more vicious stimulation.  That was meant to be a joke, but maybe in way they do get numb, like in their minds. Maybe they get bored with the same thing over and over so look for something different. If that is right, then the real problem is a bunch of men are too much in their tactile sense during sex and too little present in their minds and heart with their partners.

  9. 9
    Venus

    I agree with JerseyGirl.  Men who are our age and our equal are too busy trying to recapture their youth  to notice us.   Its true they don’t care about our credentials, acheivements, responsibilities or obligations.  We just need to be attractive, easygoing and fun!  LOL.  And while they will always insist on having a mate that they find physically appealing we must if we can suppress our similar longings in the name of securing compatibility.  Yes I do get it.  Its just sad.  

    I am in the process of suspending my online account for a couple of weeks.  Somewhat disillusioned.  This afternoon I got an e-mail from a guy with a ponytail who could barely put a sentence together and another from a well spoken overweight grayhaired gent who, try as I might, I could not generate enough interest to sustain a conversation.  *sigh*  Time for a break.

  10. 10
    Anita

    As always, Evan, I do agree with your post #9 and you, Jersey Girl #7.  People have a convoluted/inflated self-perception of who they are; hence their “demands” of a perfect/superior partner. As previous posters from this blog have stated many times over, their huge need to attain such a partner is to to cover their (huge) lack; whether it is their ego, their “lackluster” lifestyle and so forth.  Sorry to sound harsh.  It’s just that it sounds so insular and selfish in their mindset.  It is more about what I can get out of instead of what I can give/add to this partnership/relationship with so and so as well as balancing that out with assessing their attributes that may add to/complement your life.
    I’m always with a mindset that I am just your average Jane so I’m happy with an average Joe.  I’m not perfect so why should I look for Mr. Perfect.  In any case, even if he does exist, Mr. Perfect may not be so “perfect” because he’ll drive me up the wall, or to an existence of insecurities, with all his perfections.  Maybe he’s so not perfect after all. hehehehe!
    Glad you spotted Evan’s “emphasis” on the word, FUN!.  haha!  Maybe that could be an essential key to a successful relationship.  Is that right, Mr. Katz?
    Peace.

  11. 11
    Steve

    @starthrower68
     
    I think you are right.   The qualities EMK listed in #3 keep a guy dating a woman, they don’t get the woman the first date.   Looks matter for that situation.  If it makes you feel any better lots of great guys get turned down because they aren’t ambitious enough, don’t earn enough, don’t travel enough, etc etc.   We are still biological creatures underneath our cortex yamukas.

  12. 12
    Steve

    I saw a report about something similar from OkCupid.  Supposedly women who identify as thin have more confidence when they are younger, but women who identify as “curvy” have more confidence later in life and, — higher sex drives.
     
    Having been chubby as a child my non-expert theory is that people who are not blessed with superficial types of sex appeal during their formative years are forced to develop who they are in a deeper way.   Those things then come back to give comfort to people as time removes the more superficial qualities.

  13. 13
    Venus

    @ Antita 12, 

    You may be right.  I don’t consider myself “average” because I grew up in an environment where “average” was never good enough and today I don’t get paid to be average.  So yes there must be an ego thing going on here. 

    On the other hand, I  am not looking for someone with superhuman qualities.  Just someone with a measure of intelligence who doesn’t look young enough to be my son or old enough to be my father.  (Those appear to be the two age groups available at the moment… LOL) And yes mutual physical attraction is important.

    I understand Evan when he says that the dating scene is what it is and we just have to work with it to get a positive outcome,  however that does not make it any less frustrating to navigate.

  14. 14
    Kenneth, on curvy girls

    I just love when they post statistics like this. Man, I don’t say I am very experienced with girls, but I certainly have a lot experience with them. I can tell you all that there is nothing better than dating a girl who has 10-15 pounds more that “ideal” weight. They look natural, but no fat, way more sexier than skinny models. I noticed that their libido is a lot higher than super skinny girls. Men, just look at skinny girls, I’ll have my fun with curvy ones with less competition to worry about!

  15. 15
    Sherell

    Observational studies can be absolutly useless depending on the number and other variables considered.  Also when people self report it adds another layer of uselessness IMO. So much more serious research is done this way and that’s why in the US so many people are sick.  Real double blind studies done by groups that have no vested interest, like many years ago. 

    On another note I think curvy is confusing.  I would consider myself curvy, not thin, not skinny, yet I am a 5’6 and wear a size 6.  Full of curves. 

    I think for many curvy is positive like Beyonce and Kim Kardashian types not over weight.

  16. 16
    Nicole

    Starthrower #4,
    For what it’s worth, I knew what you meant and that you “got it.”  
    The fact of the matter is that you are correct, because I’ve noticed that in ANY discussion about women’s bodies and size (b/c let’s be honest, we never act as though men’s appearance matters although I’ll concede that on this particular blog, the women’s point of view is more frequently represented b/c they represent the majority of the clients here),  the language is always “I want someone who takes care of herself” instead of just saying that you don’t find it aesthetically appealing (which is valid since we all have preferences).
    So for example, everyone would be up in arms if someone argued that they only wanted to hear from college grads or people with advanced degrees b/c “they want someone who likes to expand his mind” or “I want someone who is really smart” b/c everyone rejects that the two things are equivalent.

    But if you are fat, it is ALWAYS accepted that every person who views you knows everything about your life, what you eat, and how you treat your body, and yes, that is accepted to add up to the fact that you are lazy and too stupid to manage your own life.   And no, you are never going to be given credit for being a “work in progress” either. You will be deemed “lazy” until you are skinny.

    @Sherell #17,
    Curvy is confusing b/c it doesn’t tell you anything about someone’s weight.  So you might be a curvy size 6, but there are people who are blocky size 6′s, willowy size 6′s, and yes, some 6′s have cellulite, bellies, and/or love handles.  And not everyone becomes a shapeless whale at the same point.  I’d say that Oprah is clearly overweight but has a very defined waist, so YMMV and it’s a very SUBJECTIVE description no matter what anyone wants to say.  So you might say you are curvy and others might say your skinny too.  The same is true of a lot of body types, although for the sake of online dating, it’s probably better to round up to the next category and hopefully let your pics do the talking since when you meet anyone who decides that you’ve lied, the outcome will not be positive.

    Sorry to go off topic but I always hate where these discussions about bodies lead…

  17. 17
    Twilight Princess

    There’s so much to take into consideration when looking at these statistics… such as “curvy.” What weight range defines curvy? Also, what makes someone confident? I’m not curvy, and I have confidence and a more than decent sex drive. I am still young, but my point is… could this data be misconstrued? Like maybe curvy girls seem like they have confidence because of the image they project? The idea of always attacking first before being attacked. Me thinks they doth protest too much?…know what I mean? I’m probably going to get a lot of crap for saying that, but I think it’s all situational. It’s interesting to see what people are willing to post on OkCupid though… I also thought the stats about Twitter were funny too.

    @starthrower… I’ve got a degree too. Why do your credentials hold you back from dating? I think the children might make it more difficult, but you should use your intellect as an advantage. You sound like you think you’re better than any prospect that comes your way, then giving it a label to make it seem like it’s ok or just that you don’t now or won’t ever have a need for a man in your life. There are plenty of women with higher education, children, and a religious faith that are either dating, married or looking to do both of those things. Be a little more open-minded. You sound a little bitter, no offense. We all go through a bitter stage. Don’t let it hold you back unless you’re not interested in dating. In that case I’d have to wonder why you’d post so frequently on a dating blog. ;-)

  18. 18
    Anita

    Venus #15

    Thanks for sharing your thoughts. It can be really discouraging when you can’t seem to find someone who is your “Mr. Good Enough”. I don’t know you well enough or of your current situation (i.e. Your age group or what you’ve tried to find Mr. G.E….) so I can’t comment.

    What I can do is to share my story. I’m in my mid-thirties and I have to say that I’ve never been in a long term relationship before; due to a lot of personal issues I needed to work on. When I felt “more” strong and healthy emotionally speaking, I used online dating. My present circumstance is not ideal because of distance. I’ve never envisaged to have a first serious relationship as a long distance one.

    I can view this as less than ideal situation as a frustration and toss the relationship in or feel a passing moment of frustration and let that go quickly (trust me, it wasn’t easy but if all things work out, the victory will be sweeter.) Mind you, I am not unaware about my severe handicaps given my circumstance (my age, lack of relationship experience, etc..). I have gone out on several dates, who are locals, but there was nothing for whatever the reason. The men were not bad, sad or mad. It just didn’t work and yes, it was a frustrating process. The one that works, well, lives across the ocean. I had to loosen my expectations to accomodate him into my life. It’s not an ideal situation but nonetheless, he’s my Mr. G.E as I am his Ms G.E.

    I just want to encourage you. If an average Jane like myself can find a special someone, I’m sure it’ll be a matter of time before you too, will find that SO. Keep plugging away. =)

  19. 19
    Anita

    oops! Forgot to add to my last line – “….. while having FUN in the process.”

    *wishes there was an edit button somewhere…..

  20. 20
    starthrower68

    @ Nicole, thank you.  Are there stupid and lazy fat people out there? Yes, there are.  There are stupid and lazy skinny people; there are stupid and lazy people from all walks of life. 

    @ Twilight Princess, really? Do you know for a fact that I hold myself up as better than anyone?  Have you spent any time with me?  You don’t know who I’ve chatted with online and what they were about.  So, it would probably be best not to cast aspersions the character of a person if you have not walked in their shoes.

  21. 21
    Still Looking

    @Starthrower 2
    While I agree to a certain extent with Evan’s comments regarding what men are looking for (fun, happy, optimistic, easygoing, patient, accepting, nurturing, fun and sexy) I think the characteristics you listed do matter to most men.  You are a great mom raising three kids.  Having kids at home could be a deal-breaker for some men.  You are working on a graduate degree.  To me this would indicate we would likely be on the same intellectual level and yet some men might be intimidated by your educational achievements.  The fact that you are religious would be a negative for me yet a positive trait for a devout man of your faith.  Each and every trait can be viewed as a pro/con by men just as traits can be tallied by women.  There is a huge difference, however, between men and women and how they view these objective traits.

    As has been pointed out in articles such as “Why don’t men like smart, strong, successful women?” men, in general, give very little weight to these traits.

    In the last two weeks, for example, I met a 40 year old professional working on her PhD and also a 51 year old semi-retired lady with very little formal education.  On paper the 40 year old appears much more attractive overall and yet I had a better time with the other lady because she was more fun.  Care to guess which one I’m interested in seeing again?

    Now to throw a little curve ball – When I was younger I probably would have preferred the career woman who is still raising kids because our interests (career, family, etc) would have been better aligned.  Now that I’m older and my kids are out of the house, the objective traits are almost irrelevant.  Each trait is still a pro/con but except for a deal-breaker like young children, these traits are inconsequential.

    Don’t take yourself out of the dating market because you feel you don’t meet the archetype.  You are the perfect match for someone, just remember you are not marketing yourself to a prospective employer, rather you are marketing yourself to guys who are going to focus primarily on the traits that Evan listed.

    Best of luck!

  22. 22
    starthrower68

    Thank you for the encouragement, Still Looking, I do appreciate it.  But again, I get that men are looking for sexy and fun.  As I said, I do my best to be witty and chaming if on a date and I do not hand out resumes.  I’m going to try this again: the comments are more about how overweight people are viewed.  I’m not arguring that one has to look a certain way to be considered attractive and I’m not telling anyone it’s wrong to want what they want.  I am merely advancing the notion that overweight people are not all stupid and lazy, that some actually have something going on.  If a men won’t date me because I don’t have the right physicality, ok I accept it. I’m not saying that I should have to loose weight; but that will be so I can live to see a generation or two of grandchildren and no other reason. 

  23. 23
    Still Looking

    @starthrower 24 – Try not to get too hung up on perceptions of how society views people who are overweight.  I happen to be slender and while I know many women prefer men who are more muscular I just rely on the assumption that the women who contact me on Match have viewed my pics and find me acceptable.  Likewise, if you have a number of pics on your profile (not just headshots!) you can assume that the men who contact you are interested in your body type.  It won’t be 100% of the male population but I think there is a significant percentage of your dating pool who will be interested.  

    We all have our preferences but what percent of men who “prefer” 5′ 10″, size 2, 34-D, blond hair, blue-eyed women actually date/marry their “ideal” woman?  In addition to the men who will “settle” there are also many who prefer women who are not slim/athletic.

    Hang in there…. love is right around the corner!

  24. 24
    JerseyGirl

    @JerseyGirl: Agreed. And average women don’t appreciate average men who are their equals because they want him to be taller, smarter, stronger, and richer.
    So what are we going to do about it?
    You can a) complain about all the legitimate ways in which men fail you, or b) acknowledge and understand the hypocrisy of dating and try to be the woman who DOES accept the good man who isn’t necessarily the most impressive man.
    You know where I’ve got my money.

    ———————————————————————————–

    I’ve dated all kinds of guys Evan. I’ve dated guys that were inshape and guys that were over-weight. I’ve dated guys that had high paying jobs and guys that didn’t. Guys that don’t have high paying jobs oggle just as much as guys that do. Guys with low paying jobs and who are over weight ironically sometimes have just as much as an over inflated sense of self as guys with high paying jobs and are in shape. So what am I going to do about it? I can’t do anything about it. Guys are going to do what they are going to do and not many men today even try to make themselves better men for women. I especially love the guys who list their dating ages 20 years younger and their limit 5 years younger then themselves.

    But when you say things like, ” Men simply want you to be fun, happy, optimistic, easygoing, patient, accepting, nurturing, fun and sexy. ” It’s not completely all that true. And they certainly aren’t attempting to give these things they seek in return.

    1. 24.1
      Evan Marc Katz

      JerseyGirl – You seem to have perfected the art of complaining about men.

      Why do you bother to read this blog, which is entirely about telling women how to make better decisions to attract quality men? Everything I write is met with a retort about what’s wrong with men.

      Seriously. What do you get out of this?

  25. 25
    JerseyGirl

    Oh that’s not fair. I’ve agreed with you on some points too. 

    And am I complaining or just being honest? I need to be realistic about how men are or otherwise I have unrealistic hope. And I was like that too much when I was younger. I always gave men the benefit of the doubt, I thought the best of them. I thought they wanted the same things I do. It’s harder to hold on that the more experience you have.

    I like to read the blog because the topics are sometimes interesting. I don’t always agree with your personal methology in dating or advice. But there are times when I do agree. 

    But it’s not as simple as a woman being all those things you expressed men desire. I think a lot of women feel like they *are* those things, but they still get rejected and it’s not always by some rich handsome 10.

    1. 25.1
      Jeanne

      I’m curious why it’s hard to be fun, optimistic, easy going, nurturing, etc.? I am zany and wacky and totally me. Some guys like it, and some don’t. Whoever does not, oh well. He is just a sorry dull chap. I don’t want to be with a boring sack of flour anyhow.

      I am easy going and love to laugh and love to have fun. It took the demise of a rotten marriage to realize why dating was fun and how it’s great to be free spirited and happy and “floppy”. Who gives a shit what others think? Be yourself!..Don’t be so serious.

      I have a friend who just cannot loosen up for whatever reason. Men see the sour apple in her miles away. And even when I try to convince her, it is the men…Please just let go of the crap some wanker told you years ago, deem it hogwash and move onto trying to be fun, even if it’s out of your comfort zone. Enjoy life!!!

  26. 26
    Sarahrahrah!

    I couldn’t resist jumping in on this one.

    I LOVE the charts from OkCupid!, which is easily my favorite dating site. My theories about some of the charts:

    Thin/skinny women tend to have greater testosterone levels, thus contributing to their higher self-esteem and their lower body fat percentages
    Women who are “curvy” likely have higher hormone levels overall, thus contributing to their higher self-esteem over time and higher self-esteem as their body type is presumably the most sought after by the opposite sex
    What is with all of the rough sex grandads?!?  I have to agree with InsertPseudonymHere that perhaps they are seeking more stimulation to spice things up.  I also have to wonder if people who are busy in their careers tend to look to sex as an outlet for physical activity, too.  It could also be a generational thing.  Anyone remember The Dieter’s GUIDE to Weight Loss During Sex?

    @starthrower68

    For what it’s worth, I have never thought that you are bitter or have an inflated opinion of yourself.  You sound really grounded and I always enjoy reading your posts.  Even though I am not overweight, I definitely agree with you that people harshly judge those who are.  It’s unfair, but I think you are wise to have your standards and keep them in mind.  If you lose weight for a man and then gain it back later on (easy to do), you run the risk of losing his love.  It sounds like you are looking for a man who can love you through thick and thin (and we women go through those stages more often than men), which seems like a smart strategy to me.

    @JerseyGirl

    While I can totally sympathize with your frustrations, it sounds like you are stereotyping men.  Girl, I’ve got “ex” stories that would make your toes curl — and not in a fun way!  ;-)    However, as a member of the human race I have to trudge on and give each new man, woman or child that I encounter the benefit of the doubt.  If I don’t, I end up perpetuating hatred and unhappiness in the world.  While I despise “The Law of Attraction” nonsense, there are scientific studies that provide evidence that emotional states can be transferred quickly through populations.  In other words, if you act in a sour manner, others are more likely to pick up on that and mirror that emotion.  Evidence like this has provided me with motivation to keep on trying with other fellow human beings (men!), even when I’ve had a string of really bad relationships/interactions.  Food for thought.  Hopefully things will get better for you in the future.

  27. 27
    MySecondHalf

    I found this article and the comments interesting.  My experience with online dating was wonderful.  I had fun, “weeded out” men that seemed not right for me from the privacy of my own home and, in only a few weeks, met a wonderful man that I have been enjoying and having a fun, old fashioned romance with for more than 1 1/2 years.. the attraction was immediate, he is a tall and muscular 55 year old and I am a curvy 5’8″ size 8  50 year old.. NEVER settle for someone you are not attracted to (and don’t apologize for the physical qualities you are attracted to either)… after 1 1/2 years, it still feels electric when we are together.  I say keep at it, stay positive, live a healthy life… if you are very overweight, lose weight (20 years ago, I was 110 lbs heavier than I am now.) you will feel great and have more energy for the life and love you really want.

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