What you might see as weird or unappealing, others may see as pleasant or even devastatingly attractive. And that does not stop at physical appearances.
In fact, patterns of behavior, personality types, and situations can play a major role in shaping an individual’s preference in other individuals, or as we simply call it “taste.”
Cultures across the world are unique thanks to their people’s habits, traditions, lifestyles, and, of course, taste in everything including other people like them.
To show this uniqueness, we have prepared a list of habits and tactics that people from different cultures use to attract potential mates and feel good about themselves at the same time.
The list is starting with what you might generally consider as the most unusual practices to the least unusual ones.
#1 – Smelling of cow urine
The value of cattle is deep-rooted in the cultures of many tribes across the world, including the ones in India and Africa. For example, in India, the cow is sacred and is seen as a symbol of life and maternity for the milk it provides.
But what if cow urine is seen as a product that will make you more attractive?
In certain tribes, particularly the African Mudnari and Dassanech tribe, people bath in cow urine and use it as a disinfectant, hair bleach, perfume, and soap. So, men who smell of cow urine are considered wealthy and attractive.
#2 – Smelling of onions
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Another irresistible scent to some cultures is that of onions.
While we know that onions have strong antibiotic effects and that they can absorb bacteria, provide nourishments, and improve blood circulation which can also beneficial for hair and skin, the Dogon tribe from West Africa finds their smell very appealing.
Contrary to other cultures that look for ways to get rid of the scent of onions, the Dogon men and women embrace it by rubbing their skin with onions every day and that is seen as an irresistibly attractive practice.
#3 – Gaining more and more weight
Beauty is definitely subjective. In this case, being overweight is seen as an attractive physical trait in some cultures like that of the Ethiopian Bodi tribe and rural Mauritanian tribes.
Men of the Bodi tribe prefer big, overweight bodies to fit or muscled ones, and therefore aim to gain weight whenever they can to attract the women of their tribe. To succeed in sweeping their love interest off her feet, the Bodi men participate in a contest in which they drink large amounts of milk and blood. The winner is then designated as a strong hero!
Meanwhile, in rural Mauritanian tribes, women force-feed themselves and their daughters to look more appealing to potential mates. If a girl is not “large” enough by the time she reaches puberty, she is considered undesirable by the men of the tribe.
#4 – Face-tattooing
While the ancient practice has notably slowed down in many parts of the world in recent years including North Africa due to western influence, face tattooing continues to be attractive to some people.
But, what some find ironic is the fact that face tattooing has gone mainstream in the western world. A number of Hollywood celebrities have facial tattoos including Justin Bieber who has a tiny cross under his eye and Post Malone who has the words “stay away” tattooed on his forehead.
While those are modern tattoo styles, they carry with them the weight of a long history of facial tattooing that people may still find appealing.
#5 – Weaving mats
Who says that learning the skills of mat weaving can’t be attractive? In fact, mastering any skill or art can be impressive, really.
But, on Santiago Island, local men weave their way to women’s hearts by weaving mats and presenting them as a gift.
The attraction between future couples on Santiago Island then grows immensely as they proceed to weave mats together under the supervision of the woman’s mother or elders of the family. Sometimes the key to better chemistry between people is creation and teamwork.
#6 – Playing love songs
Is this one really that surprising? But then again, imagine playing romantic music with the flute to court your crush or potential significant other? That certainly is an image inspired by a Romantic Era painting.
Men in the Native American Lakota tribes play intricate wooden flutes to attract their potential match and it appears to work!
In Lakota tribes, suitors play beautiful love songs with his flute outside the house of their love interest during evenings, hitting one note higher than the other, in hopes of gaining the ladies’ high opinion of them and, ideally, win their hearts.
#7 – ‘Giraffe’ Neck
This is yet another traditional practice that is worth mentioning and which reminds us of the traditional foot-binding.
The practice of neck rings in Asian and Africa is traced back to the 11th century. Until today, some tribes continue to put brass coils around their daughters’ necks to have the desired result: long necks that are also known as “giraffe necks.”
As the girls grow in age, more fitting brass coils are added to make their necks longer.
Although having a long neck is generally considered attractive, in these tribal cultures, extra-long necks are the standard.
#8 – Dancing to look Attractive
Some people sing for love while others dance for it. And, while some people think that they look the least attractive when they dance, others in some cultures see it as an opportunity to woo their love interest.
The African Wodaabe tribe does exactly that. There, bachelor women participate in beauty competitions where they show off their dancing skills to attract a future husband and vice versa.
Throughout history, we have been good at imitating our animal kin, and the courtship dance of birds is definitely one of the things that humans have developed.
#9 – Owning a pet
What’s a better way to end this list than mentioning pets?
Animals have the power to touch our hearts and it is no surprise that a large number of people find others who own and love pets reliable and even attractive, as shown in a study by the journal, Anthrozoos. The study maintains that 53 percent of men and 73 percent of women said they would never date people who do not like pets.
Meanwhile, 35 percent of women and 26 percent of men said they were attracted to people who have pets.
With that said, what habits or behaviors do you find attractive or people find attractive in you? If you do not have the answer to that yet, you may as well get yourself a pet and love it unconditionally!