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What Women Want: Top 6 Qualities We Look for in a Man

By Darlene Vazquetelles 

Writing about relationships could be a little tricky.  There are so many factors to consider, e.g., age, socioeconomic background, and culture. Importantly, what you want in your 20s most often drastically changes in your 30s. 

When looking for love there is a question that I consider to be paramount: “WHAT DO WOMEN/MEN WANT?” The answer to this question is crucial to demystify the opposite sex. 

Being a woman, I will talk about what WE want versus what MEN think we want. Every woman has her own list of qualities she  looks for in a man. Based on my own experience, and when speaking with many of my male and female friends, the following six qualities women look for in men tend to be the most misunderstood by men. 


According to a survey done by Men’s Health Magazine on more than 1,000 American women ages 21 to 54, 77% of women ranked "sense of humor" as their number one must-have in a man, beating out passion, confidence, intelligence and generosity.  These last four play a very important role in a man’s personality.  With that said, a sense of humor is a key element in a relationship.  

Men Think We Want
I have told my male friends that I look for sense of humor in a man and most do not believe me.  Some men think that all women want is a good looking man with hazel eyes, a six pack, a pearly white smile, dark and thick hair, and with a big-heavy wallet. Although the aforementioned sounds appealing, personality is paramount; without it, the other assets will end-up simply boring us.  

What We Want
Men have to be fun and interesting to converse with.  Mental stimulation is very important.  A woman will be happy if she is out with a man who can show that he is intelligent through eloquence and that he is witty. 

Also, someone who does not take himself too seriously is a plus.  Humor often shows that a man is confident, clever and can be there to cheer you-up on a rainy day. 

With that said, be careful men, we are not looking for a clown.  Do not overdo it. With all the fun and laughs, some real conversations might be missed, and we do not want that.  Also, conversations go both ways so talk, i.e., ask and listen.  

The aim is to have a great time with someone no matter time, place or circumstance. In life, you encounter the great, the good and the bad.  Being able to share your sorrows and laughter with someone by your side is what we all want.  Sharing the burdens and the happiness builds beautiful chemistry; and once you build those experiences together, the road ahead seems a lot less bumpy for the two of you. 


In an era where so many people communicate via text, Facebook, Twitter, among so many others, there has been a loss of picking-up the phone and making an actual phone call.  This was one of the first scenarios I dreaded after my last relationship ended.  I was scared of dating again because of the games involved with early dating.  

Men Think
Men tend to believe that women will like them if they are mysterious and unavailable. For instance, the man will stop calling or texting after the first couple of dates. The man will show little interest in our lives but then will “like” our photos on Facebook. Additionally, the man will add pictures with other girls to provoke a reaction out of you and the games continue.  Although this behavior can drive us crazy for a brief moment, all it takes is one night out with our girlfriends and a real man to call us to forget about you and your games.  

What We Want
We pretty much want someone who is reliable, trustworthy, honest and real!  If we went out and had a great night, there should be no games lined-up.  If you say you are going to call, then call.  It is okay to receive a text message, an email;  but it should be combined with phone calls.  If you like us, let us know. If you want to ask us out, do it.  Life is short and options are endless, so playing games will only backfire, i.e., end-upbeing a complete waste of time and energy. In sum, keep it REAL.


“In this day and age romance is lost.”  I have heard this over and over again but I have also learned that it is not completely true. I have recently experienced that this is a generalization. There are plenty of men who still know how to show a girl that romance is still alive.  Some do not believe in it.  Some are romantic in their completely different, and at times "strange" ways, but romance does exist.

Men Think
Opening car doors, buying flowers for a girl, and telling her how beautiful she looks, is romantic. A high percentage of men think that they do not need to be a gentleman, especially when they have been in the relationship for a long time.  Today, women are more independent so some men believe that they really do not have to make too much effort to build-up a relationship and romance a girl. 

What We Want
AFFECTION,   AFFECTION,   AFFECTION!  Guess what guys?  We do want flowers, kisses, hugs, for you to hold our hands, and shower us with compliments. We like manners, chivalry, and other gentlemen qualities in a man. We like to know that you are happy to be with us and that you appreciate us. There is nothing wrong with receiving the princess treatment. Hint: If you treat us like a princess, there is a strong possibility that we will be motivated to show you our appreciation later in the bedroom.   

And talking about the bedroom…yes, we do like sex.  Good compatibility is an important factor in a relationship.  We can be your princesses outside the bedroom and your seductresses inside.  With that said, we do have some petitions. 

Many men do not understand that there are some stages and bases to cover before the act. We like to cover these stages.  Yes, let’s welcome "Mr. Foreplay" to this article. Sweet kisses and whispers. Be creative, and be patient.

Other ways of showing your romantic side

Be accommodating to her needs but not spineless. Allow her to make decisions that affect the two of you. Protect and take care of your lady. Take charge and step-up in times of conflict. I am not referring to conflict between the two of you but any circumstance that occurs outside of the relationship.  One of the situations that hurt me the most in my past relationship had to do with my boyfriend not standing-up for me. Always have her back when someone else is disrespecting her. This goes both ways. Additionally, respect her opinions, friends, family, hobbies, interests, body, and mind. 


Communication is a strong key for any relationship, especially if one of you is constantly on the road for work.  Busy lives combined with quick communication, e.g., via texts or emails, can lead to misinterpreted messages. At times, one of you may end-up assuming one thing or another, and it all becomes a mess. Assuming is a communication killer.  Always ask and listen. Also, anytime someone is upset, take the time to cool-off, and when calm talk to the other. 

Men Think
Many men have trouble verbalizing their feelings. Many men step back and settle in their "man caves."  Most men think that we are too emotional and argue over nonsense. Some let us talk, let it out of our system, and then just remain quiet.  

What We Want
What men can see as nonsense might be of huge importance for us. At times we are emotional, especially during that time of month, but with some understanding between both parts, no argument should erupt. All women want is someone to hear us when we need to vent.  

Girls, I have to throw out this advice.  After reading Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus, I learned one of the biggest communication lessons ever: there is no point on trying to settle an issue while both sides are upset.  Each one should walk away, and then try to settle it out when the air is clearer. Otherwise, words that are not meant to be said are  tossed freely and will result hurting you or your boyfriend. Again, waiting to cool-off applies to both men and women. 

Also, honesty is an important ingredient in relationships.  Be clear about what you want, and he should do the same.  

At the end of the day, all a woman wants is to know that her boyfriend is thinking about her. So, when you take that trip or have to work late, a bit of communication does go a long way.   It takes less than a minute to let us know that and trust me guys,  we won’t bother you for the next ten hours… or two! ☺


Men Think
I am sure that you have heard your guy friends say that men who take care of themselves, for example by going out for pedicures/manicures, are not straight. There is a lot of insecurity and ignorance in that though. There is absolutely nothing wrong with cleaning-up as long as you do not go overboard, and turn it into a one man runway show.  

What Women Want
Manicures/Pedicures: Both sexes work with their hands and feet, so a manicure and a pedicure is unisex! We all deserve it.   

Cologne: We like a good scent but make sure you don’t spray half the bottle on yourself.  It is such a turn-off to be able to taste your cologne just by kissing you hello.  

Eyebrow Waxing: Eyebrow threading is for girls! At the same time, a unibrow is never attractive. 

Dress up:  Wearing a blazer goes a long way.  

Belts! Belts! Belts!  Make that effort to look good.  We do notice.  Obviously, it all depends on where you are going.  If you are taking a girl to a nice restaurant, leave the flip flops and the ripped t-shirt at home (this seldom applies to Europeans). There is a time and place for everything.   We like to dress up, even when it’s just to go to the beach or a sporting event,  so pretend the dress code is in your invitation and says "Dress to Impress."

How can I leave this one out when most of the men I asked "what women want " immediately answered "MONEY."

Men Think
I guess these men have been asking the wrong girls out.  I admit that there are many women who focus on catching a man that earns the most $$$ (or has a successful social reputation).  I do not want to generalize because most of us (at least in my circle) consider everything else I covered in the sections above more important than just money. 

Many men tend to drive themselves crazy.  They put all of their focus on work and being able to provide for their families.  They understand that if there is no financial security, having a family will be almost impossible. They focus on working in order to provide.  It is a logical situation.  But then, balance between work and their relationship is sometimes lost.

What We Want
Just like men focus on their financial stability, today, a high percentage of women do the same. I want to include myself here as I would never want to be in a position where I have to stay with someone just because I cannot stand on my own two feet, financially speaking. 

Financial reasons have played a major role in how relationships have changed throughout times.  More and more couples are moving in together before marriage.  Living expenses, credit cards,  and student loans have increased with time. Now cohabitating relationships are more socially acceptable and often seen as economically advantageous.    

Still, the choice of not having to work does matter.  Just like men tend to feel threatened by past divorces, possibilities of alimony and child support, women feel pressure to have financial freedom before thinking about motherhood.  But even as we focus on career and that autonomy, we also look for that happily ever after with a husband.  We look for that balance that I feel sometimes men tend to loose. 

Balance: We want our partners to work of course.  As much as we love seeing them going out and having a career, especially if it is a job that they are passionate about, we also want them to spend time with us.  This is where that balance should come in. We want quality time. It can be just sitting at home, cooking together, doing house work or a simple walk around the neighborhood.  

These are the moments that help a couple reach more intimacy.  

Relationships are not as complex as some make them seem.  It is a matter of communication, understanding and respect.  Know the other person’s needs and don’t ever try to change them.  

This has been a fun article to write, and as I mentioned before, I did it based on what I have seen, experienced, learned, and researched amongst my friends.  

I want to end it by reassuring the men who are reading this that contrary to your beliefs, it does not matter how independent a woman is and that your wallets are an important part of your lives…. Women are more receptive to romantic gestures than anything else. It is not about the gentleman versus the bad guy.  It is about having someone that makes us feel loved and that no matter what, we can openly trust.  


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