Has Masculinity Lost It’s Appeal?

Let’s talk about masculinity. What does it mean to be a ‘masculine’ or ‘manly man’? The first traits that come to mind are strength and ability to successfully use a power tool. If this were true, that would rule me out straight away. I don’t ever pretend to class myself as ‘manly’. It’s not in my DNA. I took to social media to try and find out if the typical masculine man was still what women (and men) find attractive, or if society has changed it’s views. Does being manly still put you at the top of the pile?

A Little Bit About Me

Let me first give you a brief idea of just how ‘manly’ a man I am. I stand at a huge 5 foot 10, and weigh a staggering 10 stone. I have a career that involves changing nappies and singing ‘Ring-a-ring-a-roses’ to a bunch of toddlers. My ability to grow facial hair matches that of a 14 year old boy, and my body looks as though it has only just discovered puberty. My DIY skills peak at changing light bulbs and hanging up picture frames.

I suppose some parts of my personality could be classed as the typical male stereotype. I enjoy watching and playing sports. I’m a pretty fast runner. I also have the ability to have a conversation with a woman and forget every little detail almost instantly. If that’s not a manly thing to do then I don’t know what is.

So the question is, am I okay with the fact that my man points are stuck on zero? Too right I am. Where I lack in physical strength, I think I make up for in other areas. My job as a nursery worker requires me to be nurturing and caring. These are traits I would much rather have. I’ve embraced my personality after spending so many years wanting to change myself. It’s far too easy to see someone else and want to be like them. Social media has a lot to do with that.

Women Of Twitter – Is Masculinity Still Attractive?

I wanted to find out what the modern day woman finds attractive in a man, both their personality and physical attributes. The general assumption is that women want a cave man. A strong, physical specimen who is confident and can also fix things around the house. I was curious to find out if this is still true. I put the question out to Twitter, and the results were mixed.

75% is personality. BUT I can tell you if you’re overly concerned with your diet, work out, shoes, hair, or wear make-up i know that i will be your last priority and am NOT interested. so, yes, “manly” men are still *it*

Yes, definitely manly. I don’t want a “feminine” man.

a guy who can *fix stuff* is always attractive

Regardless of any physical appearance of any guy I dated, they all had to have a sense of humor. Kindness, and an appreciation and know how of working/ playing with little kids. Physical attributes- I found myself dating guys tall and generally skinny. Mean was a deal breaker.

From the comments, I found that some women still found the more typical ‘manly’ man more attractive. However, a lot of women stated that looks don’t even come into it, and that a caring and sensitive personality win out over everything. I think that it depends on what people are looking for. When you are younger, looks do mean more than most things. Although when you get older and you are looking for your ‘life partner’, the personality of someone outshines everything. Is that intellectual connection there? Is there a romantic spark?

Media Influence

The media has a lot to do with the way that men view themselves. There is so much attention on the way women are portrayed by social media that it’s easy to forget about how men are viewed. You always see the pictures of strong, muscly men on TV adverts. Walking around with their six packs and rugged looking beards. You take a look in the mirror at your matchstick arms and wonder where it all went wrong. Mental health and self worth is a real problem for a lot of men. It goes unnoticed because we are usually too embarrassed to talk about it.

I struggled with my feeling of self worth for a long time. I hated the way I looked and didn’t have the confidence to fit into the normal stereotype of a manly guy. When I finally found myself, and realised the kind of person I wanted to be, I accepted who I was. I now have a soon to be wife, a beautiful child and a career path that I am good at. My masculinity hasn’t defined my future. I’ve played to my strengths and made the best of what skills I have.

Will I ever be able to lift a heavy object or have the confidence to be the life of the party? Probably not. However, I can care for a child and recite the entire Baby Shark song, so I’m doing okay.

So to answer my initial question, I don’t think masculinity has lost it’s appeal. Some women still want a manly man. What I did find however, is that a man’s personality now plays a bigger part. Connecting with someone that has the mental attributes that suit your needs wins out every time.

If any man out there reads this and wants some advice about this subject, then please get in touch. Or if any woman wants to drop in for some ‘girl chat’, apparently this seems to be my thing too.


  • Claire

    This is a really interesting post.
    I’ve never given it much thought, I guess my fiancé, is the typical manly type on the outside but he is so far from the manly type on the inside.

    His love for his children really appealed to me and the more I learn about him the more I see how sensitive he is, more than me sometimes.

    In fact right now he’s cuddled up to me after an emotionally difficult day.

  • Jenny

    Really interesting post! It’s definitely got me thinking. I honestly don’t really think about how masculine or not masculine a man is, whether it’s someone I’m talking to IRL or someone I’m watching in a movie. There are definitely a lot of stereotypes but just because someone is physically fit and strong with bulging muscles and a six pack doesn’t equate to masculine and vice versa.


    • YuleTimes

      It got me thinking too. I’ve spent my life thinking I wasnt manly enough and too ‘soft’. Stereotypes are definitely still there though. I can be manly in other ways haha

  • Phill

    Great points, I would love to see a response from the men with the same question. It’s an interesting view point and may once and for all close gyms everywhere.

  • Deborah Wyatt

    What is ‘manly’ I think my hubby is a equal balance of both femininity and masculinity, he’s not scared to be broody around babies, or share his feelings, but he can love extreme sports and be rugged too. The most attractive trait I feel a partner can have is the kindness over everything trait x

    • Ariel

      This has been a very long debate recently. I have always had image issues because I didn’t fit the Hollywood definition of macho. Im not built like Dwayne Johnson. But I’m an involved dad. I can fix some things. I can make people laugh 😂. I think being masculine is all the things that make each man unique. Except man buns. Those have to go.

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