Nice Guys vs. Bad Boys: Who Really Finishes Last?

Nice guy or bad boy?

Do nice guys REALLY fin­ish last and do you suf­fer from “nice guy syndrome”?

You may have heard the expres­sions “nice guys fin­ish last” and “nice guys sleep alone.” Despite all the girls out there who say they’re look­ing for a “nice guy”, some­times it feels like “bad boys” have all the fun.

So why do girls like “bad boys”? And do you really need to be a jerk to attract beau­ti­ful girls? Or could the real truth be that “nice guys fin­ish first”? Well, it’s com­pli­cated, but here’s how I see it:

  • Manip­u­la­tive “nice guys” always fin­ish last.
  • Gen­uine “nice guys” fin­ish last in one night stands and brief affairs.
  • Gen­uine “nice guys” fin­ish first in long term relationships.
  • Gen­uine “nice guys” who adopt some “bad boy” traits will always fin­ish first.

Let me explain…

There Are Two Types of Nice Guys: Gen­uine and Manipulative

Much of the con­fu­sion about whether “nice guys” fin­ish first or last comes from con­flict­ing views about what it means to be a “nice guy”. While gen­uine “nice guys” act con­sid­er­ately, manip­u­la­tive “nice guys” have self­ish motives.   

  • Guys tend to take a favor­able view of “nice guys”, believ­ing that a typ­i­cal “nice guy” is some­one who puts the needs of oth­ers before his own. A “nice guy” avoids con­fronta­tions, does favors, gives emo­tional sup­port and gen­er­ally acts con­sid­er­ately towards women. For the most part a “nice guy” has friendly, yet unassertive per­son­al­ity traits. 
  • Some women take an unfa­vor­able view of “nice guys”, argu­ing that self-proclaimed “nice guys” are only moti­vated by manip­u­lat­ing women into a rela­tion­ship and/or sex. They view “nice guys” as inse­cure men unwill­ing to artic­u­late their roman­tic or sex­ual feel­ings directly. Instead, the “nice guys” present them­selves as a woman’s friend and a shoul­der to cry on in the hopes of being sex­u­ally rewarded for their “nice­ness”. When the friend­ship doesn’t progress into a roman­tic rela­tion­ship, the “nice guy” becomes resent­ful and feels used.

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Are You Suf­fer­ing From “Nice Guy Syndrome”?

Nice guy syn­drome” is a fancy term used to describe this manip­u­la­tive “nice guy” who acts with self­ish motives. These guys falsely believe that if you put in enough friend­ship tokens, you pull the lever and sex comes out.

Some peo­ple go as far as to say that the self-proclaimed “nice guy” is, in fact, angry and emo­tion­ally demand­ing. This is because of his inse­cu­rity, and a sense of injus­tice and frus­tra­tion as his desires go unful­filled, while the “bad boys” get the girls.

Hope­fully this doesn’t describe your sit­u­a­tion, because this kind of “nice guy” always fin­ishes last. If this does sound like you, you need to take a long, hon­est look at your­self, and stop blam­ing oth­ers for your prob­lems. If you believe that the world is not fair to “nice guys”, you need to rid your­self of your vic­tim men­tal­ity or you’ll never be suc­cess­ful with women.

Take This “Nice Guy Syn­drome” Test

Before you write off “nice guy syn­drome”, cling­ing to the belief that you’re a gen­uine “nice guy” with no hid­den agenda, take this test:

Are you as pleas­ant to a woman you con­sider phys­i­cally unat­trac­tive com­pared to the women you  nor­mally drool over?

If not, could it be that being nice is your hope­ful strat­egy to some­how hook up with her? Despite your “nice guy” per­sona, in this sce­nario your motives are no bet­ter than any­one else’s (even those “bad boys” you despise).

Why Do Girls Say They Want a Nice Guy, But Then Sleep With Bad Boys?

Guys some­times accuse girls of hypocrisy because girls say they want a “nice guy”, but sleep with “bad boys”. It seems that girls enjoy hav­ing “nice guy” friends who will lis­ten to her com­plaints about her boyfriend and be emo­tion­ally supportive.

The prob­lem is that while you secretly fancy this girl and are patiently wait­ing for her to real­ize that you are a bet­ter man, she appre­ci­ates you as a friend, but is unlikely to see roman­tic poten­tial in you.

There are a num­ber of rea­sons for this. One pos­si­bil­ity is that she doesn’t trust your motives and thinks you might be a “nice guy” of the manip­u­la­tive kind. Another big issue is that even gen­uine “nice guys” often fail to demon­strate vital traits of attrac­tion that women look for in a man, namely, con­fi­dence and status.

Nice guys” often either lack the con­fi­dence to man up and be clear about their desires, or they lower their sta­tus by show­ing too much inter­est. Putting a girl on a pedestal and singing her praises will only lower your sta­tus in her eyes.

That’s why beau­ti­ful girls seem to enjoy the “chal­lenge” that comes with dat­ing a “bad boy”. These “bad boys” have the con­fi­dence to make their desires clear, yet don’t lower their own sta­tus by idol­iz­ing girls.

Women are attracted to mas­culin­ity, which embod­ies strength and power. Being too nice is syn­ony­mous with hav­ing no power. “Bad boys” often appeal to women on a vis­ceral level that only evo­lu­tion can log­i­cally explain: “Sur­vival of the fittest” = female attrac­tion to tough, ruth­less men.

If a guy is a typ­i­cal jerk, women seem to think that the guy’s very “jerk­i­ness” is proof of his sex­i­ness. After all, the “bad boy” is so “un-needy” that he doesn’t even try to impress her, so her logic says that he must be so desir­able that he doesn’t need to try!

The Nice Guy Plays It Too Safe

The “nice guy’s” biggest sin is that he plays it too safe. He’s afraid of offend­ing her so he doesn’t chal­lenge her, he agrees with her opin­ions, com­plies with her wishes and he’s apologetic. He is unwill­ing to stick his neck out and take risks in case he makes a bad impression.

When it comes to attrac­tion, there is only one thing worse than mak­ing a bad impres­sion, and that’s not mak­ing an impres­sion at all. In his exag­ger­ated attempt to make a good impres­sion, the “nice guy” comes across as bland, for­get­table and replaceable. 

What the “nice guy” doesn’t real­ize is that a woman will for­give a man for being con­tro­ver­sial and polar­iz­ing, but not for being bor­ing. Con­tro­ver­sial peo­ple like the typ­i­cal “bad boy” may not always make the best impres­sion, but they’re never bland and always memorable.  

The result is that when it comes to brief affairs and one night stands, women tend to pre­fer a dom­i­nat­ing and promis­cu­ous “bad boy” over a com­par­a­tively bor­ing and con­fi­dence lack­ing “nice guy”.

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Nice Guys For The Long Haul

For gen­uine “nice guys” it’s not all bad news. Most girls even­tu­ally see the “bad boy” for who he really is. Remember that girls don’t inten­tion­ally go out look­ing to date jerks, they just seemed like the more chal­leng­ing and attrac­tive option at the time. (That said, I don’t advise wait­ing around for the object of your desires to see the light.)

Iron­i­cally, while girls are sex­u­ally attracted to dom­i­nance in men, dom­i­nance does not nec­es­sar­ily make men lik­able to women. Some stud­ies show that there is a greater chance of a women want­ing a sec­ond date with a lik­able “nice guy” than with a sexy “bad boy”.

So while girls like “bad boys” for flings, “nice guys” win out when it comes to long-term rela­tion­ships. The “nice guy” who is in touch with his feel­ings, and who is will­ing to put his partner’s plea­sure first makes first-class dat­ing mate­r­ial. So while “bad boys” out­per­form “nice guys” in terms of num­bers of sex­ual part­ners, “nice guys” tend to be more suc­cess­ful with respect to longer-term, com­mit­ted relationships.

Unfor­tu­nately, I sus­pect that one rea­son these rela­tion­ships last is because some “nice guys” are so relieved to have a girl­friend, that they lower their stan­dards and make exces­sive com­pro­mises in order to make the rela­tion­ship work. I’m sure that many gen­uine “nice guys” could attract a higher qual­ity part­ner by tak­ing a few lessons from the “bad boys”.

Nice Guys Want Raunchy Flings Too!

So how do “nice guys” avoid being strung along wait­ing for a woman to come to her senses, only to be dropped again when the next jerk comes along? “Nice guys” want steamy sex too, so how can a gen­uine “nice guy” be more sexy to women, and attract more sex­ual partners?

The good news is that you don’t have to be a jerk. Women don’t really want a bad per­son, they just want a mas­cu­line man. And it’s harder for women to find “nice guys” who are mas­cu­line than it is to find “bad boys”, who are almost always masculine.

Focus on what the “bad boys” are doing right. Women don’t want a man who gets on his hands and knees for them. So no more kiss­ing up, com­pli­ments, or doing favors to get a woman’s approval.

For exam­ple, if you hardly know a women don’t tell her that you love her, or even that she is beau­ti­ful. Most “nice guys” com­ment on a woman’s beauty way too soon, which only makes you look infe­rior and uno­rig­i­nal. Also, don’t go show­er­ing her with gifts or spend­ing lots of money on her.

Com­mon ways to show you are not under her thumb are not smil­ing as much, not giv­ing her your ultra-focused atten­tion, play­fully teas­ing her and above all let­ting her know that she must pass YOUR standards.

You must learn to take charge and be more con­fi­dent, calm and cool. This will make you appear in demand by other women, which will make you more attrac­tive to the women you desire.

You can do all these things with­out cross­ing the line into being abu­sive, and women will love you even more than they love the jerks. Niceness itself is desir­able to women, but tends to be used by men who are less attrac­tive in other domains, and this is what cre­ates the appear­ance that “nice guys fin­ish last”. On the other hand, “nice guys” who are will­ing to learn from “bad boys”, par­tic­u­larly in the begin­ning stages of a rela­tion­ship, will always “fin­ish first”.

Remem­ber that the past does not equal the future. Change your present behav­ior and gor­geous, boda­cious, tan­ta­liz­ing women will be part of your future.

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About Tyler Duncan

I'm not naturally good with women. Most of what I know I learned the hard way. I know how it feels to be too shy to approach, to get stuck in the "Friend Zone" and have girls flake on me. Check out this embarrassing post about How I Got My First Slap →

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