Gendernomics: The Male Sexual Strategies – Part 2

product-life-cycleWhen I was writing part one, that was intended to be a a stand-alone piece, but after posting it I’ve gotten some feedback, both in the comments and via Twitter, mainly relating to why I did not break down male strategies in the same depth and detail as with female sexual strategies. However, as I outlined in the first post, while males superficially can adopt a similar variant to the female strategies to further target a specific type of female, the male goal is opposite of the female goal. Whereas the female is adopting a sexual strategy to act as a filter to eliminate suitors preemptively, due to females having general appeal by default, A male has no appeal by default and works towards general appeal, in order to maximize his market value. Thus, a male can derive little value from engaging in the same filtering behaviors employed by females.

One of the comments brought up an interesting perspective on intra-sex competition (male vs male) and inter-sex competition (male vs female) in that males theoretically have two options, focusing on the traditional masculine behaviors that have their greatest effect in male vs male competition or focusing on the behaviors which females find attractive. This is a persuasive argument at first, however it ignores the treasure trove of data gathered in the manosphere for over a decade, that the same behaviors that are effective in inter-sex competition are also highly effective at attracting women.

Female attraction for a male owing to hypergamic optimization, dictates that a woman want to mate with the highest value male possible and the only way to determine the highest value male is to see how he ranks competitively compared to other males. This is not to say that men cannot employ strategies to more directly appeal to women rather than engage in inter-sex competition, but this is a case of complimentary approaches rather than dichotomous approaches. My post on the female sexual strategies is exactly such a blueprint in how to appeal to a specific type of woman based on her sexual strategy.

Mate Guarding

The idea of mate guarding is that a male through engaging in behaviors that either discourage other males from attempting to mate with his female, or through behaviors that discourage his female from mating with other males, can ensure paternity. These types of mate guarding can be broken down as intra-gender competition (male vs male) and inter-gender (male vs female). Intra-Gender competition takes place where a man seeks to discourage other men from entering his territory, for instance through dominance. By being a dominant male, he is signalling other males, that a failure to respect his territory may (or will) end with conflict. A male not prepared to deal with such conflict is likely to look for easier prey.

The inter-gender style mate guarding takes place when a male is of such high value that his woman cannot realize hypergamic gain through trysts with another male. There is most likely a threshold of her current mate’s value compared to the prospective lover’s value, that determine whether an attempt at a tryst from a female will take place. As it would make little sense to risk the present state for no theoretical gain.

In both cases the behaviors are complimentary as it represents a two-pronged approach, wherein the male ensures that no other male will encroach on his territory, while also making sure that his territory has strong borders. Both of these are accomplished through a mix of inter and inter-sex mate guarding. This takes place in order to secure his paternity, in effect monopolizing her sexuality/fertility for himself. This primarily ensures that any resources he invests in the children and in the woman will benefit his genetic lineage.

For females the concept of mate guarding is not quite as cut and dry. While females tend to often demonstrate clear examples of mate guarding through the means of social shunning. Females also tend to maintain a stable of replacement mates (orbiters) for utilization when her primary relationship fails. The current literature on the topic would strongly indicate that females quickly get over a relationship if they are the ones to end it, the apt description being that a woman can turn love off like a switch if it assists her hypergamic optimization. Females do not mate guard to ensure paternity, they do so to secure resources. The anger from a trophy wife when her husband replaces her with a younger model is not due to him getting his rocks off with someone else. She was perfectly fine with this when she was the “someone else” it is due to the prospect of losing her ticket on the gravy train.

Thus, the female variant of “mate guarding” is in fact resource guarding, ensuring that the proceeds from his labour are monopolized by her and her children.

Therefore, male mate guarding seeks to monopolize his own resources for the benefit of his genetic lineage, in effect defending his person from theft. The female variant of mate guarding seeks to monopolize the man’s resources for the benefit of herself and her genetic lineage.

What Do Women Want?

This is one of those questions that many great thinkers have struggled with throughout the years. Unlike male attraction, which is well understood at this point, down to optimal female measurements [1]  . Furthermore, where men can state what they find attractive in women outright. This is one of the interesting aspects of male debate on female attractiveness, as most men are quite aware of their preferences. Whereas, the same cannot be said for women. I reviewed a few different sources on the matter to see if a pattern could be identified in an earlier post.

Sourced from [3,4,5,6,7,8,9]

Female preferences

As is obvious from the six different sources, there are some overlaps, such as being a good listener, humor, dresses well, however in this overview, there are around 30 different traits. The question then becomes, are these “need” traits or “want” traits? Without going too deep into the concepts of needs and wants, one could compare it with buying food, for instance I require some yogurt to have less than 5 grams of carbohydrate per 100 grams and over 7 grams of fat (need) , but I also like them to have a solid amount of protein (want). My assertion would be that many of the traits outlined in the above table are wants, not needs. They are traits a woman would like a man to have after covering the needs. Secondly, that some of these traits are measurements of underlying qualities that demonstrate social aptitude, physical ability, and so on.

It would be very interesting to see similar trait lists developed with the additional variable of a woman’s age, as the traits women desire will greatly depend on her stage in life. A woman in her party years will not be looking for traits that would make a man a good father, whereas a woman going through her epiphany phase may put more weight on just such traits. As demonstrated by the graph, male most attractive agebased on OKcupid data, males of all ages rate women ages 20 – 25 as the most attractive. This speaks to the static nature of male attraction, in that regardless of his own age, he will prefer a woman within the bracket where a woman is at her fertility and beauty peak.

Women on the other hand, show a different pattern of preference in that the age of the male they prefer changes based on their own age.

In contrasting the two graphs, it becomes clear that there is something at work here, which is not taken into account in when females speak of attraction to males. A simply prefers a male who is her age +-1, the exception being after turning 38 where women go through a phase where they prefer men below their own age.

Thus, it would be highly probable that a woman’s mating preference, and therefore the traits she seeks in a male would be dependent on her own situation.

female age vs males she finds most attractiveFor this purpose, attempting to break down the optimal strategy for a male, would be dependent on the woman he is planning to approach. Not only in terms of which sexual strategy she is presently employing, but also due to the shifting nature of her mate preferences.

As referred to earlier, a woman’s mate preference shifts across her ovulatory cycle [3], furthermore as demonstrated across her own age and thus stage in the sexual market place. On her own chosen sexual marketing strategy, and potential other variables. Therefore, it follows that for a male attempting to adopt traits based on female preference, he is aiming for a constantly moving target. Thus, it requires very skillful and rapid calibration if this is the male’s goal.

To draw on marketing management, attempting to appeal to a constantly shifting market is a fool’s endeavor, when consumer preferences are very volatile, attempting to build a brand around those preferences ends up being both expensive and unsustainable.

From a historical perspective, one has to take into account that men never had to appeal to female preference. In the early years of our species, and for millennia after that, females had very little say in with whom they mated. First, as females are the weaker of the species, it would have been a case of whether their protectors (present mate and family) or attackers (potential mate and family) won the battle. If we look at how other species do it, when a new alpha lion enters a herd, he kills the offspring and the lionesses then go into heat. As we move further ahead in our history, marriage and thus mating was utilized as a strategic tool for the rich families and aristocracies. For the common families it was a trade of protection and provision by the female’s family for progeny and labor for the man’s family.

The concept of appealing to a female directly through behavior is a fairly recent invention, which is not to say that females did not have preferences of their own for the past millions of years, but rather that the female preference was voted down by the interest of her family. This does beg the question, if males have evolved a preference for the female hourglass figure [1] would not female behavioral mechanisms have evolved in the same manner? We have to keep in mind that the female sexual strategies are not strategies to attract mates, but strategies to attract the preferred type of mate. Males do not need to filter, they need to build the same attraction quality that in females is inborn. Thus, the goal for one attempting to devise the ultimate male sexual strategy is to determine the equivalent of the hourglass figure for females.

The Male Equivalent of an Hourglass Figure

The female hourglass figure symbolizes health, fertility and youth. One has to keep in mind that in nature, the choice of a poor mate in the form one that carries inferior genetics, is one that has untold of consequences. We are all here today because our ancestors picked mates that have been able to reproduce in an unbroken line for millions of years of genetic competition. Throughout that history, the offspring of those inferior genes died out and their genetic lineages ended. While it is possible to overcome poor genetics through heavy parental investment, from a production perspective, it takes the same energy to produce a child from superior genetics as it does to produce one from inferior genetics. The major difference comes in the parent investment required to compensate for inferior genetics post-birth.

Thus, it follows that if males have become biologically predisposed to be drawn to the female hourglass figure, there has to be some form of equivalency for males. If one adopts the methodology of praxeology, one could argue that females would have evolved a natural mechanism for discerning between those offspring that would require a larger post-birth investment as opposed to those who will not. After all, the female would want her offspring to have a maximum chance to survive and reproduce and thus it follows that if genetics would not cause a high probability of this, it would follow that she would be more prone to engage in behaviours to ensure such investment on the part of the male.

This brings up which models females utilize when selecting a partner.

To Compensate or to not Compensate

When comparing two products, there are two rough models, compensatory models (where one quality can compensate for another) and non-compensatory models (where one quality is the determinant). For instance, if comparing 2 burgers across the qualities of taste and appearance, the former model would pick the one with the highest average between the two, whereas in the case of the latter the highest score on the most important attribute. [2] Thus the question here is, which model is used when people pick their mates? For males, we know there is an evolved preference for the hourglass figure. There are variants upon the different models, however for the sake of brevity and clarity I will utilize only simple forms. Namely models that are wholly based on one quality as opposed to models that use an aggregate with non-weighted values, the two values serving as the inputs will be “Genetic Value” and “Parental Value“.

In the former model, only genetic value will be the determinant, therefore the male with the highest genetic value will always be chosen to be the father of a woman’s offspring. In the latter model, the male with the highest average score between the two non-weighted values will be the father of a woman’s offspring. In the latter model, a 10 in genetic value and a 5 in parental value will be a total of 7,5, thus genetics will only be half the equation. In such a model, the genetic value may be apparent early on, displayed by among others the body of the male, body fat percentage, hair, skin, and various other physical traits.

The parental value may only be observed over time, as it is impossible to determine this at a first meeting. This creates a phenomenon where if a female is utilizing the former model, her decision regarding the value of a male can be done very rapidly while in the case of the latter model, requires a longer time-scale. This pattern points towards one night stands, which are often rapid decision-making scenarios as opposed to dating, which is a longer term decision-making scenario. Thus, it conforms to the Alpha Fucks – Beta Bucks pattern utilized within the manosphere.

Alpha Fucks – Beta Bucks

Alpha Fucks and Beta Bucks (AF/BB), is a pattern wherein men who qualify as Alpha males are the first choice of females within the sexual market place. These are men who easily can obtain short-term maintain opportunities without making a major resource investment. Beta Bucks on the other hand refers to a male who does not create the attraction and sexual tension that an alpha male does, and therefore adopts a strategy of demonstrating their value as a long-term partner for instance through the demonstration of their provider capabilities. The way my mind works is that patterns do not happen by accident, and the fact that this pattern has become such a major foundation within the PUA and Red Pill communities point towards its soundness.

In this model in a reductio ad absurdum variant, an Alpha may obtain both short-term and long-term mating opportunities, furthermore, they have a wider selection of women from which to select their mates. Betas on the other hand may only access long-term mating opportunities at high resource cost, and they will only be selected after the Alphas are all taken. In essence, a Beta male is like a Nissan Leaf at AVIS, it is only picked after all other options have been exhausted.

Outside of the reductio ad absurdum example above, the female selection criteria depend somewhat on their stage in the sexual market place. The compensatory model is utilized with weighted preferences here, so that a woman during her party years is highly weighted towards preferring the Alpha, whereas a woman in her post-wall stage will be more equally balanced in her selection.

Summary and Conclusions

When I was writing the male sexual strategies part 1 I started that work utilizing the same model that had previously proven its usefulness in dicerning female sexual strategies. This resulted in a highly convoluted model that I debated with a few people. The major caveat among these men were the tendency of the traits to be overlapping. As I worked on the model more, and attempting to dive deeper into the abstract, I came to the conclusion that the various manifestations of men as metrosexual, hipster, ultra-masculine, where in and of themselves not what resulted in the success of these men within the sexual market place. The results of the first inquiry into the topic was the model below.

Male strategies 3In this model I’ve attempted to split men into different categories, however the traits are very much overlapping rather than mutually exclusive. As opposed to the female model where it was possible to break down women who primarily utilizes beauty vs. those who primary utilize nurturing and so on. In this model, it became nearly impossible to split these values from each other.

A dominant male, will by nature of that attain social proof, thus improve his social ranking. A man with a high social ranking, will naturally inspire deference in social situations. A wealthy man may attain both dominance and social proof as a function of his wealth.

There is no doubt that men adopt different methodologies in the sexual market place. Some work on their appearance, in the form of clothing, weight lifting, maintaining a low body fat percentage with a high amount of muscle and grooming. Some work more on their personalities improving their intellect, their sense of humor, and Machiavellian mindsets. Others again work on their social ability, engaging in social circle game, where they are presented with a steady stream of mating opportunities as a function of having a large social circle, in which they hold a dominant position.

However, the man who works on his intellect can leverage this towards social circle game or towards improving his appearance. Some of the men I know and know of,  who have been able to improve both their own appearance and the appearance of other men, are those who leveraged their intellect towards the appearance goal. These are also men who may easily leverage their skills in the intellectual sphere towards the social sphere.

Therefore, breaking down men into simple strategies such as those for females, or into “intergender competition” vs “intragender competition“, in essence competing with other males vs competing directly for female attention becomes an intellectual cul-de-sac. Mate selection for both genders is based on attempting to get the best possible deal, men want the highest value woman they can get, and women want the highest value male they can get. The nature of a market is that the highest sought after commodities also carry the highest price. As demand goes up, the price people are willing to pay increases. However as price increases, the supply also increases. This is the fundamental truth of the laws of supply and demand.

Thus, the most sought after commodities within the sexual market place, will be the men who women most seek, and the women who men most seek. However, this is not the foundation, this is a second-order principle. The question is, how is the value set in the first place? Arguing that a man or woman has a high sexual market value because they have a high sexual market value is circular reasoning, or affirming the consequent, probably both to some extent. There has to be a starting point for sexual market value.

If one takes an example from a normal market, one may create two levels of competition. One is competition within an industry, for instance attaining the best workers, attaining benefits in research, production methods, or various other ways. This is the determinant of the price into the market as a function of break-even points for the various competitors in an industry. The inter-industry competition thus determines the production costs of the good produced by the industry. Then there is market competition where the various companies within an industry enter interactions with their customers who have determined the price they are willing to pay for the product.

What happened in the breakdown of the female sexual strategies, is that it became very clear that females are utilizing differentiation strategies to an extreme level in order to appeal to a specific male market. This is very logical for a market where demand (for females) greatly outstrips supply (of females). When it came to the male market it became clear that the supply (of men) greatly outstrips the demand (by females). This creates a situation for females, wherein they do not need their overall quality to be high in order to compete with other females for male attention. This plays into the tendency of females to all be attracted to the top 20% or so of men.

Whereas for men they have to be of higher quality in order to compete with other men for females, due to the female tendency to all be attracted to the top 20% of men. Differentiation for men starts to play a role once they are within the top 20% of men because they in up in the situation that females experience by default.

This creates the situation wherein due to the nature of the market females have to differentiate their products in order to appeal to the right consumer by default. Whereas the man has to develop his product to be in the top 20% of products prior to engaging in differentiation. This is very similar to new product categories being launched, with first general demand must be built for the product category, only then can one start to create generalized demand for one’s own product. The male product has to build general demand, then differentiated demand, whereas the female product can go directly to differentiated demand.

Therefore, all the various things that women outline that they want in a man, for instance those in the table I showed earlier are things that come after the man has built a generalized demand, but in and of themselves those qualities do not serve as foundations for that demand. They are “wants” rather than “needs“.

More Reading 

The Red Queen: Sex and the evolution of human nature by Matt Ridley

Sperm Wars by Robin Baker






3 comments on “Gendernomics: The Male Sexual Strategies – Part 2

  1. Joe says:

    About 2 months ago I realized I need to drastically up my SMV before honing in on my specific type of women. This article really brought to light and clarifies the supply/demand dynamics behind why that is, you really nailed it.


  2. […] – 40 years later. Perhaps one of the things that has not been talked much about in terms of male sexual market value is how it is affected by compounding and investments that are made prior to the SMV peak. The […]


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