How To Read Body Language Of Women: How To Read Over 50 Sexual Cues Of Female Body Language For Flirting – PART I
This article is presented as an add-on to the my free book BLP: The Only Book On Body Language That Everybody Needs To Read: Chapter 13 – Courtship Signals.
Please note that all links in this article are done by me personally and will open in a new tab and you should explore these links to gain a more thorough understanding of courtship. You may also wish to skip back to the Table of Contents and read from the start to gain a more comprehensive body language education.
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Most female sexual signals have some component that is rooted in appearing submissive. By displaying in a certain way, a woman is telling men that she is willing to head to a man’s dominance. Others signals are designed to showcase the physical assets of a woman, primarily her youth and health. The final category includes cues that indicate approach is permitted and encouraged. These are the cues that draw men in and give them permission to court.
Some of the most common ways women indicate sexual interest, and the first class of signals, are displays of submission. They include body lowering or body shrinking, childlike playfulness, dilated pupils, eye widening, neck and wrist exposure, coy glances, smiling, giggling and laughing, touching the neck, head tilting, shoulder shrugs, bowing the forehead, downcast eyes, turning the toes in called pigeon toes or “tibial torsion.”
The second class of signals relates to a woman’s health and youth – her sexuality and sexual assets. Some of those signals include auto contact or self touching, bending over or pushing the rump in a man’s direction, leaving legs uncrossed or re-crossing them in view, leg twine, putting the chest on display, tossing the head, playing or flicking the hair, object caress, suggestive lip licking, pouting, removing clothing or playing with shoes, hiking the skirt, grooming, the parade or catwalk and hip tilting,
The third way a woman indicates sexual interest are proximity related and the desire to increase proximity. These cues indicate that approach by men is welcomed and permitted or that courting which is already in progress may increase in intensity. This includes leaning in, the room encompassing glance, crossing the legs toward, pointing toward with the fingers and toes, torso orientated toward rather than away, fluttering of the eyes, high blink rate and high chew rate (if eating), increased touching, hugging with the hips pressed against hips, shallow breathing and panting, flared nostrils, and mirroring.
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Put Yourself In Her Shoes – She Wants You To Pursue
In order to understand women in dating, we must know that women want and enjoy sex as much as men. However, with this encounter, there are inherent risks. The risk of being rejected is just one of them. Women have been programmed to be the elicitors of sex, not the pursuers and aggressors. It is the woman’s job to indicate that approach is welcome, but it not her job to approach.
In the mind of women, she has given off enough nonverbal cues, and has incited interest through nice dress, make-up, and cues of submissiveness, then the rest if up to him. From there, the signal must be received and decoded. The bravest of men blessed with confidence, charisma and charm will succeed in approach and solicitation. From a woman’s perspective, she feels rejected if the signals are not acted upon. She believes that she is courageous in sending signals and also thinks she is being obvious and overt, despite what a man might think. To her, eye contact toward a man of interest is risky and also direct and she fully expects you to empathize with her on this “emotional” message. If her nonverbal screams do not lead to approach, then you will be cast aside as an unworthy mate. In her view, she is a prize, one worth fighting for, pursing and claiming. Courtship is a measure of a man’s strength and weaknesses – its very nature is to weed the good from the bad, the valued from the value-less.
The Rule Of Four
The rule of four states that in order to be sure that a woman is unequivocally displaying non-verbal sexual interest, four separate positive signals must be present simultaneously, and they must be directed at a specific person.
We must also be careful of signals that are evolving during the development of a new relationship. A woman might initially be interested in a man and give off positive cues of attraction, but once communication is established, she could change her mind and so change her postures. The impressions we make on people are continuously changing and so is the body language that people are emitting. Therefore, we must be constantly measuring interest and disinterest. We also must watch for mixed signals.
Remember that body language is a representation of the unconscious and very often we deal with limited and incomplete information. I doubt that anyone would show attraction to anyone else if their full set of flaws were showing all at once and initially upon meeting. Therefore, no signals of seduction by a woman will ever be foolproof and accurate as a representation of her complete impression of someone, since the impression itself is incomplete. Impressions are fleeting and ever-changing, especially at the initial stages of a relationship. However, since body language occurs naturally and instantly, we can gauge and watch the evolution of people’s perception of us over time.
Just as we need to be mindful of positive cues, we also need to watch for negative cues. Keep an eye out for what scientists call de-courting skills, where the overall attentiveness of a person falls over time. The rapport between two people can change over the course of just a few minutes.
When it finally comes time to speak, it is essential to once again ramp up our mindfulness of what is going on non-verbally since things might change dramatically. Priority should always be given to subconscious body language over conscious words. For example, a woman who otherwise gives off positive cues and jokingly pushes you off saying, “get away,” is probably just teasing you and really does want you to continue to pursue. A woman’s true intentions are never quite clear, but body language can help uncover what is hidden to others and sometimes even to her. There is always conflict going on in our minds, we need to expect there to be conflict in the body language we use.
Broadcast Signals Versus Fish-And-Lure
A woman who is sexually aroused might display one, or a great variety of cues, but they might be directed toward a room in a “fish-and-lure” or broadcast display, and not at anyone specifically. Usually, these cues are propelled by her ovulation cycle, and serve to indicate a woman’s general demeanor, her mood, and thus her receptivity to courting. Nonverbal cues are frequently emitted purely on an emotional level.
It would pay back in dividends to watch a woman’s baseline over time. Should she begin to dress more overtly by wearing skin-tight jeans, a low cut blouse, or a short skirt, a give off more sexual body language, it could imply that she is nearing the middle of her menstrual cycle and is nearing ovulation.
Increases in female sexual hormones influences female behaviour causing women to act flirty during a specific moment in her cycle. Research has shown that women we seek out sexual opportunities during ovulation and even prefer the manly musk of men during this period of high receptivity. However, during this time, she may deliver a higher frequency of cues and they may be omnidirectional.
Eye Contact To Anchor Body Language
For a cue to have specific meaning, it should be anchored to a person. This is accomplished through proximity and eye contact. Eye contact is how cues are targeted over a great distance. For example, a woman can lick her lips, toss her hair and cant her head to the side, but all this lacks meaning until gaze anchors it to a specific person. If that person fails to catch and read the signal correctly, she will simply send the signal to another man she fancies with no great loss to her.
Eye contact turns a fairly benign gesture like touching the hair into one that is directional. The eye contact ties the sexual signal to a specific person of interest rather than the room at large. We must also never forget that body language, can, at times, be total devoid of underlying meaning. Preening the hair might mean, in simple terms, that a person wants to fix their hair so it doesn’t obstructing their view. Eye contact while preening, on the other hand, says, “I’m preening for you!”
A Note On Available Women
Available women and non-available women (those in a relationship) all display the same types of body language when they find someone attractive. This is why body language is so universal; it occurs regardless of whether or not a woman is in a relationship with someone else and therefore reflects a woman’s true attraction toward all men. Women who are not in a relationship, however, will display certain gestures and actions that non-available women typically will not.
It is important to watch for these gestures so that you don’t waste your time pursuing someone who is already taken. These gestures include having a flushed appearance or blushing in the presence of a man of interest, open postures such as palms up, and generally making attempts to get noticed. Available women will also be more likely to isolate herself from her friends and will often appear alone. This has the effect of opening the door for an approach. Conversely, women who aren’t interested in romance will clump up together to gain security in numbers. We see this fairly regularly in social settings such as bars.
Displays Of Willingness To Submit
This happens when a woman takes on a lower position relative to another. This includes the head shrunk into the shoulders, sitting down from a standing position and so forth.
Height can be artificially reduced by sitting, standing at the bottom of a staircase, slouching, drooping the head and so forth. Tall women might find their posture suffer because they tend to slink down to fit in with the rest of the crowd rather than standing tall. All techniques indicate the desire to reduce overall size so as not to appear threatening and that she wishes to submit and be cared for.
A woman may become suddenly childlike. For example, she could begin to tease or tickle a man, sneak up from behind and steal a hat or other belonging. She might also sneak up from behind and cover a man’s eyes, as just a few examples.
Acting childlike is a demonstration that her guard has been let down and she is prepared to open up to a man and his advances. When women become playful, it shows that there might be something more than just friendship at hand.
People’s pupils grow with interest. They become larger when they see something they like, enjoy, or are aroused by. When someone is aroused, their brain is being stimulated which then causes the pupil to open up allowing more light to come in which in turn allows them to see better.
Thus, a woman whose pupils become particularly large when looking specifically at a man is probably aroused. This might explain why we seek dimly lit places for intimacy as it causes the eye to dilate further amplifying the romance.
Autonomic Processes, Flushing, Blushing, Sweating.
When women become sexually aroused, the nervous system sends the body into overdrive. This results in the body increasing its metabolism. As the heart rate rises, the body begins to consumer more oxygen and its temperature rises. The body begins to have a flushed appearance as blood vessels dilate in effort to cool itself. A telltale cue that a woman is becoming excited includes flushing of the cheeks and upper chest near the collar bone. Her palms may also redden and perspire. The body then becomes agitated resulting in fidgeting. We normally read this as nervousness.
Interruptions In Normal Behaviour Or Flash Frozen
If she is doing something she has done a thousand times before, but it looks as if it requires additional concentration, she might be caught in a fright response. This in turn causes her to freeze or alter her thought pattern causing her to fumble over her task. Imagine taking a draw from a cigarette. She raises her hand to her mouth, catches a glimpse of a man she fancies, pauses stiff, looks down, then after a moment takes a drag. She has been caught in a thought, and her body has triggered a protective fear response. Under normal circumstances, she would simply carry on, but when intimidated by a thought of attraction, her mind froze her body to protect it from drawing attention to itself.
You can imagine a group of girls conversing when a man walks in and he’s the topic of conversation. They instantly grow quiet, avert their eyes, freeze awkwardly, not wanting to be noticed. Even though, the women can’t be heard, they still flash frozen in fear. Women will usually flash freeze with their hands, but also their feet. This is viewed as a change in stride pattern while walking, or a momentary pause in speech.
Eye widening is any act done to make the eyes appear bigger than normal through raising the eyebrows or lifting the eyelids. Women have also taken to the habit of plucking their eyebrows. This has the effect of creating more space around the eyes causing others to perceive them more favourably. A wider eye is more childlike and friendly. Eye widening is a positive nonverbal cue indicating that someone is observing positive stimuli, stimuli that bring them joy and happiness or surprise and shock.
Have you ever noticed the size of a newborn’s eyes in relation to their body and face? What about cartoon characters? Eye widening evokes protective feelings in others and women will use this to gain sympathy from men during courtship. Research has shown that when women widen their eyes, men release hormones, the same hormones that motive them to protect and defend others.
While the neck is not inherently sexy on its own, it is a way that people signal trust when facing authority. The neck contains many nerve endings making them highly sensitive. A woman’s neck is also far less robust, more dainty, longer than men’s, with less musculature. The neck is an extremely vulnerable part of our bodies which we defend rigorously if attacked, and the genes we have as a result of eons of evolutionary history supports this. One well placed bite to the throat by cat like predators instantly immobilizes their prey.
The neck exposure display is done by removing long hair or by simply canting the head to the side. It says, “I’m trusting and submissive to your dominance and am showing you this by exposing my vulnerable neck by canting to the side or removing my hair. I trust that you won’t harm me.”
You can imagine a woman might seductively remove her long hair by bringing it over to one side, or twisting it around a finger then flex it to the side flashing her neck. She might tilt her head to the side by dropping her head and bring her hand up to carefully stroke and caress the skin on her neck just lightly, so as to draw a man’s eyes on her. In more overt cases, woman can even display sexually by coming so close that the neck invites a kiss.
It is thought that women wish to send a more childlike image with their head cant in order to elicit a protective response in men. This is a submissive gesture and normally performed by women. The head tilt happens by tilting the head at forty-five degrees and delivering eye contact in a come hither type, coy, teasing, type look with plenty of neck exposure. It makes women appear more childlike and helpless, and evokes protective feelings in men. Its primary motive is to expose vulnerable parts of the body, the neck, to show submission and trust in a man’s dominance.
Men and women also cant their heads to the side outside of a dating context and it says that a person is interested and engaged in what is being said.
This sexual cue involves removing clothing or pulling up a long sleeved shirt, stroking the wrist with the other hand, turning the palms up while gesticulating, holding a wine between the fingers palm-up, or casually playing with an earring or the side of the face causing the wrists to be exposed. It says, “I wish to submit to your dominance so I’m exposing my delicate and vulnerable wrists.” Exposures of the wrist, palm and neck are a visceral responses linked to submissiveness. Flashing of the wrist indicates that trust is present during courtship.
The forehead bow is another position held indicating submissiveness. It occurs when a woman lowers her head, then looks up at a man from under her eyebrows.
It’s a sort of “come hither” look. It makes it’s appearance at anytime by you might imagine it over a drink, as she reads a book, or during dinner.
The forehead bow is akin to a bowing which is used around the world to show respect. In contrast, the opposite posture, where the head is titled back, eyes cast “down the nose”, is considered a direct threat.
Usually the person who looks away first is the more submissive or passive of the two. That is so long as it is done by looking down rather than left or right. Downcast eyes tell men that a woman is prepared or willing to submit to him. When women do it in a dating context, it signals interest because unlike eyes that move left and right – scanning, eyes down punctuations the eye contact to a specific person. In extreme cases eyes might be fixated on the ground. This shows full submission and possibly a desire to be left alone. Here, watch for double takes, a look up, followed by eyes down, coupled with associated cues such as grooming the hair or a smile. Eyes down coupled with grooming, torso and toes toward, indicates that a girl is shy, rather than in the process of rejecting.
The eyes averted downward evoke a protective response from others. They say “I’m shy and I’m submitting to you because I’m attracted to you” or “You’re the boss and I’m looking down because you are dominant and I feel threatened by you and respect you.”
Sideways Glance Over Raised Shoulder
In the sideways glance over raised shoulder, a woman will turn her back slightly facing the object of her interest, raise her shoulder, and gaze adoringly over it with eyes cast upward. The cue is made more salient in a strapless dress! The sideways glance over raised shoulder says “I’m looking over my raised shoulder to tease and flirt by showing off my curvy shoulder and making you do a bit of chasing to secure my full one-on-one attention.”
Women do this flirty gesture as they gaze at men of interest. Instead of squaring themselves off and looking straight into his eyes, her body faces away and she looks over the shoulder which seductively teases him. This posture emphasizes the curviness of the shoulder and exposes the vulnerable neck.
Many biologists think smiles have roots as a fearful gesture, as a sort of “fear grin.” Today though, human smiles are a universally submissive gesture but they can also symbolize pleasure, amusement, aggression, or anxiety (grimace). These other emotions never truly supersede the most common purpose of the smile which is to show submission.
Smiling can sometimes be sexual, but accompanying signals must be cataloged to create certainty. Women will smile for a great variety of reasons and will smile regularly to appease men for no other reason besides habit. Smiling is a natural part of being a woman and while smiling alone is submissive, it doesn’t necessarily indicate sexual interest. Accompanying signals must adjoin smiling for it to be a true sexual signal.
Women find men who can make them laugh and smile attractive. By smiling more and telling more jokes, you can force women to find you more attractive. The more you smile, the more others will too. Women also tend to smile more at those they like. If a woman makes a point to smile at you every time she sees you, then she is probably interested in you.
Subordinate people will laugh simply to appease more dominant people, and dominant people exclude themselves from the laugh so as to maintain their dominance. Controlling laugher therefore, can help control our dominance or submission to others, as well as show our acceptance or rejection of others. In a dating context, watch for laughter and giggling that seems uncontrollable proving that a woman is really lost in the moment. If she makes a lot of eye contact, smiles, blushes, and acts animated in your presence; she probably really likes you.
Women will show their meekness and submissiveness by softening their voice and lowering their voice volume. However, when they become aroused, their voice volume will increase, they will speak faster and seem giddy, their thoughts will race, they may also show nervousness by stuttering or be at a loss for words and freeze up. A change in voice character can therefore be an indication of interest. Often, the voice increases in pitch and laughing takes place more readily and often in unison with the person they feel attraction towards. When laughing happens during more benign conversation and conversation is directed at the expense of involving others, it’s a signal that things are intensifying.
When a connection is made, the voice may match or mirror the object of her affection. She may speed up or slow down speech, increase or decrease volume, alter pitch or finish sentences. These are extension to mirroring and show that commonality is being fostered.
When a woman turns her toes in toward each other, rather than out, it suggests interest. It is referred to as “tibial torsion” anatomically. It is another gesture that indicates submissiveness and by extension shows that a woman is smitten in your company.
She is shrinking up her body and creating a less threatening profile.
In contrast, there is the military posture, in which the toes turn outward and the hands are held behind the back.
If you see a woman in pigeon toes, you can be sure she is open to an advance. Just monitor what effects your approach has on her.
The leg twine is one of the most appealing sitting positions for women. It occurs when one leg is tightly pressed against the other making it appear extremely toned. Coupled with legs pressed together tight, woman, during seduction, will rub her upper thigh. This adds an extra element of intensity to her appeal for approach and shows men the type of touching she is expecting and imagining.
This gesture is performed by a person with a soft side. It is given by someone who is prepared to let their guard down to someone else and take on a smaller overall profile. It can be as subtle as a small lift in the shoulders or could be a full shrug and hold of the shoulders. It can often happen very quickly though, and can occur in accompaniment with an eyebrow flash as well as eye contact.
This form of gesturing is often unconscious so it makes for an accurate indicator of interest. Shrugging is an emotional involuntary response to someone whom you like.
This gesture is universal and not culturally specific. Men also seem to perform this gesture when they are attracted to a woman.
Be watchful for cues that indicate general openness.
These include palms up rather than down, hands gesturing rather than stuffed in pockets, arms and legs uncrossed, torsos facing toward rather than away, not hiding behind barriers which can include drinks held across the chest, stools or tables, relaxed facial expressions, and smiling.
Open cues are cues that say that a person lacks defensiveness and wishes to carry on an interaction. Legs and arms crossed tightly says that she is not open to communication at any level. Add a head titled backward in judgment, and you had better move along.
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