The 20 Biggest Dating Deal Breakers According to Science

Along with your Pinterest wedding board and your re-blogged Tumblr posts of shirtless dudes, you probably have a mental list of do’s and don’ts for your future bae.

Maybe you can’t deal with short guys, or maybe height doesn’t matter that much of you. Maybe you can’t stand vegans — or maybe meat eaters give you the creeps.

The point is it’s not uncommon for us to have our relationship “deal-breakers” and they can range wildly. That’s why a group of scientists recently looked at men’s and women’s relationship deal-breakers to make sense of things once and for all.

In the first study, 92 college students were surveyed about their personal relationship deal breakers. The majority of students listed around three for a short term relationship and five for a long term relationship.

In total, 49 deal breakers were listed from the students (pictured below). After this initial study, the researchers surveyed a separate sample of 295 college students to determine how students ranked these deal breakers in order of importance. Additionally, it was found from the second sample that women are more likely to identify traits as deal breakers. So if you’ve ever thought your guy friends weren’t as picky as you, you might be right.

Here are the top 20 — 10 for long-term relationships and 10 for short-term.

Adapted from Jonason et al. (2015)

After generating this list, the researchers surveyed 2,744 single American adults. These adults were given a list of 17 traits and asked to check off the traits that they viewed as deal breakers. Survey participants chose six traits on average, with women choosing slightly more traits than men.

Adapted from Jonason et al. (2015)

Although these findings are interesting, some are no-brainers. It’s not too surprising that 72% of women don’t want to date a guy who is lazy.

And while it may seem surprising that more women view “bad sex” as a deal breaker than men do, keep in mind that for a lot of men, bad sex is like bad pizza: still really, really good. The same can’t be said for many women, who can struggle to have orgasms from intercourse.

But the thing about studies is that while you can say that you hate smokers on paper, you might just meet a guy who checks all your “deal maker” boxes, and also happens to smoke. You might still date this guy, contrary to your previous statements.

It’s been found in many dating site studies that we don’t truly know what we want. And those who check boxes such as “no kids” on their dating profiles may very well end up changing their minds. That’s all the more reason to forget having a type and making a checklist, and find a future bae based on how they treat you rather than how they look on paper.

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