We know what most men find attractive in a woman on a very basic level: pretty face, curvaceous body. Then there are the other, more controllable things we know that make us more attractive: being clean, having nice hair, being well-groomed in general, keeping relatively fit, having a good sense of humor, intelligence, confidence. Most of these things are common sense.

But then there are the things that aren’t as common sense – little things that can subtly influence the way men perceive a woman’s attractiveness on a subliminal level. Here’s a list of those things. Isn’t soft science fun?

1. Wear the color red.
A number of studies have shown that men unconsciously judge a woman wearing the color red to be more attractive and sexually desirable than if she were to wear any other color.

 One such study, conducted by the University of Rochester and published in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, found that men would tend to sit closer to the woman wearing red, they would ask more intimate questions, and they would be more desiring for her attention. Men were also more likely to ask the woman wearing red out for a date, and more willing spend more money on that date. The study argues that men’s sexual arousal at the color red is a preference deeply rooted in their biologies; they point out that even non-human primates are more sexually aroused by the females who display more red.

2. Wear scents that smell of cinnamon, lavender, or vanilla.
Many women mistakenly assume men are attracted to the same kinds of “sexy” perfumes that appeal to women. In reality, a man’s sense of smell is very different from a woman’s, in both preference and sensitivity.  A woman’s sense of smell is often much more sensitive, and according to a study done by the Social Issues Research Center, it can sometimes be up to 1000 times more sensitive than a man’s for certain smells. So – as a study put out by the Smell and Taste Research Foundation in Chicago found out – it’s actually scents like lavender, vanilla, and cinnamon that are the most attractive to men. Alan Hirsch, a neurologist for the foundation found that the smell of vanilla and lavender were especially very arousing to men. Lavender (mixed with the smell of pumpkin) is sometimes even used as a natural remedy for men with impotence.

3. Tilt your head slightly down.
A study that was conducted by the University of Newcastle and published in the journal Evolutionary Psychology found that men perceive women to be more attractive and feminine when her face is tilted slightly downwards. Tilting her face upward made the woman appear more masculine, and therefore less attractive to the men in the study.

4. Look approachable through your posture.
According to Patti Wood, and expert on body-language communication and the author of several books on the subject, the key to using your body language to attract men is by appearing “very approachable”. To do so, she suggests standing with your feet no farther than 6-inches apart and to point your toes slightly inward. At the same time, don’t slouch. Stand straight and confident.

5. Send out clear signals of interest by smiling and laughing often .
Okay, so this one isn’t really so subliminal, but I thought it was kind of interesting anyway: studies have shown that a woman who smiles an average of 35 times is much more likely to be approached by men than if she were simply good-looking. This makes sense, since a study done by the University of Innsbruck found that reciprocity is a very crucial component in a someone’s perceived attractiveness – it even had the power of making someone who was previously judged “unattractive” appear “moderately attractive once there was acknowledge reciprocity.

6. Play up your eyes and lips.
A study published in the International Journal of Cosmetic Science found that makeup around the eyes had the strongest influence over a man’s judgment of a woman’s beauty. However, another study conducted by Manchester University found that it was a woman’s lips that was most attractive part of her face to a man. I’m leaning on eyes being more important, but either way, I think it’s safe to say that the eyes and lips play important factors in perceived attractiveness.

Have you noticed any subliminal tricks that seem to work for you personally?