If you’ve ever locked eyes with a campus cutie across a crowded room at a house party, you probably find yourself wondering… what does he think of me? But, have you ever wondered what he first notices about you? Does he like my dress or my hairstyle? Does he see the circle of friends I’m hanging out with or care about the way I’m sitting? Well, wonder no more! We’ve talked to the guys firsthand to hear what gets their attention, what they notice at first glance—and how you can have him doing a double-take!
On a dinner date
Your sense of style
As chic collegiette fashionistas, naturally, we already knew this, but your personal style can say a lot about your personality. And don’t worry, the boys are taking notice of that cute little sundress you’re wearing to meet him for your Friday night dinner date. We’ve already told you what guys think of some of your outfits, so it’s no wonder that they would be taking notice of your outfits on date night.
“I see how she’s dressed as a way to figure out what she’s like,” says Jonah*, a senior at University of New Hampshire. “How a girl is dressed can tell me a lot of things about her. Like, if she’s outdoorsy then she’s probably not wearing a mini-skirt.” As girls, it goes without saying that there are certain outfits we save for certain occasions. We like to wear the little black dress to formals and we only break out the more revealing (like say, the famous bodycon mini skirt) for the frat party. Most guys we talked to say that they notice that difference. “I like to see a little bit of her figure, but I don’t think she should put it all out there either,” Jonah says. “But there’s a line you cross from being sexy to just being skanky.” When it comes to clothes, the cut and the silhouette of an outfit will impress the guys more than showing skin.
While you’re rummaging through the racks of your closet for that perfect date night outfit, you might be surprised to hear that besides your personal style, your hair is just as important to the guys. Evan*, a freshman at Champlain College, says that one of the first things he notices about a girl is her silky, sexy locks.
“I guess it’s just a personal thing, but I love wavy hair,” Evan says. “I love hair that looks soft, that I can run my hands through.”
Jonah agrees, saying that one of his biggest pet peeves in a girl is messy hair. “If it looks like she hasn’t showered in days, like it’s all frizzy, that’s a turn-off to me.” Good to know.
Where and how you sit in class
It might be hard to scope out the cuties in class, but that doesn’t mean that the boys have stopped looking! So how do they see you in class among rows and rows of other girls? You might not think that slouching in the back of the lecture hall in your sweats says all that much and you would be right! Drew*, a senior at Rivier University, says that a girl who carries her head high and sits towards the front of the class sends a strong message. “It’s saying, ‘Hey, I’m confident. I’m a girl you’ll want to know.’” Think about it this way, do you ever notice the guy sitting in the back who looks like he’s about to take a nap? Or do you notice the confidant, talkative guy up front with the rest of the class? Which guy would you want to flirt with share notes with in a study group?
At the party
Who you hang out with
While the guys love a girl who is outgoing and likeable, being a social butterfly can have its drawbacks. More than half of the guys we interviewed said that they would be less likely to approach a girl at a party who was surrounded by a posse of her BFFs. Even worse, if you’re caught hanging out with a group of guys, guys say they automatically assume that one of those guys is your boyfriend. Sam*, a senior at Fitchburg State University, says that approaching a girl who is surrounded by either girls or guys can be intimidating. “If she’s hanging out with all her friends, it’s a lot more embarrassing if she turns me down,” he says. “And if she’s with a bunch of guys, I feel like there’s a lot of competition.”
Your going-out makeup
One of the biggest turn-offs to guys is what Cory*, a junior at the University of New Hampshire calls, “clown face.”
“There’s nothing more obnoxious to me than when a girl’s caked on the makeup,” he says. “I can’t hardly even see her face and I want to know what she looks like.” Ditch the face glitter and crazy clubbing colors. According to the guys, a smoky eye or pouty painted lips can be just enough to get his attention. And feel free to go au natural for a change.
When you’re running from class to class, guys might be the last thing on your mind. And frankly, how do you know if he even sees you crossing the street to class or in the middle of the morning rush at the dining hall? What does he see about you? Why not the way you walk? A sexy strut can reveal a lot to the boys. “I see these girls who stomp around like dinosaurs on campus,” Drew says. “Not very ladylike. Whatever happened to walking like a normal person?” So stand tall, walk with grace, and treat the campus like it’s your catwalk!
What you tote around
Joey*, a senior at Boston College, admits that it can be hard to notice a girl on campus unless she makes a lasting impression. One of the things he notices about girls is the amount of textbooks, purses, and bags they carry with them. “I’ll notice if a cute girl who’s carrying around a ton of stuff,” Joey says with a wink. “If it looks like she’s struggling with an armful of textbooks or something, it’s the perfect opportunity for me to swoop in and lend her a helping hand.”
Other guys say that the items themselves can speak volumes about you as a person. “If she’s carrying around a lot of makeup, I kind of take that as a sign that she’s going to be high maintenance,” says Craig*, a junior at Brandeis University.
You might not think he’s noticing you, but as we’ve heard from the guys themselves, chances are that they are! But what about you, collegiettes? What do you first notice about the boys?
*Names have been changed for anonymity.