Scientific Flirting Advice: Phone Numbers Given More Often on Sunny Days

First Posted: Jan 29, 2013 05:35 PM EST

Another interesting 'scientific flirting advice' from French professor Guéguen: Females are more likely to respond positively to a request for their phone number when it is sunny outside. That, at least, is the result of a small study published in the journal Social Influence which involved an 'attractive' 20 year old male approaching 18-25 year old women which were walking by themselves in the street, measuring the percentage of phone number retrievals. To control for the environment, the experiment was conducted on days when the temperature was about the same, with the two categories of sunny days and cloudy (not rainy) days.

The result was that the women were 50 percent more likely to respond positively to the flirtatious approach and follow through with handing out their phone numbers on sunny days, with a rate of 22.4 percent versus just 13.9 percent on the cloudy days.

"The phone numbers were later used to contact the women and tell them the true nature of the study, as per the recommendation of the ethics committee of the lab which reviewed the project," said Guéguen.

Other studies repeatedly found that weather is a significant and retestable factor influencing individual and social behavior, although this is a rare study testing specifically for the impact of weather on courtship and dating behavior. Prof Guéguen found in a previous study that applying red lipstick consistently increases the tips received by waitresses.

Possible caveats of the study are also mentioned by the author, saying that"the sunshine or other factors may after all have improved the attractive 20 year old male's flirting skills on those days. Other atmospheric conditions such as windiness or humidity were not accounted for. And, perhaps most crucially, the research was conducted in France, where men traditionally approach women in romantic relationships."

Study: Nicolas Guéguen. Weather and courtship behavior: A quasiexperiment with the flirty sunshine.

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