Studies have confirmed that flirting works… if you play it right. But does playing hard to get work on men? When women do this, it’s done both subconsciously or deliberately. The thing is: Guys do it, too. Except when they do it, we call it “weighing their options” or “scared to settle down.”
We asked guys if reading the signs was really all that simple: When women play hard to get, is it a turn-on, turn-off, or just plain confusing? Here’s what they said.
1. Every woman does it.
“I don’t think I’ve ever met a girl who doesn’t play hard to get, at least in some way — and I like that. I’m a guy, I want to feel like I worked hard to get your attention and that you’re not just paying attention to me because I’m the last one at the bar before last call.” —Cody, 24
2. It lets me know she’s interested.
“When women play hard to get, it’s like the tried-and-true way to get a guy to notice you. I mean, don’t get me wrong, I like it when girls are straight forward too, but there’s just something about a girl who teases you before letting you know she’s interested that just really appeals to me, both at a bar and at home.” —Jason, 28
3. It’s super-hot.
“Nothing hotter than a girl who makes me work for it.” —Jamal, 24
4. It makes me feel unwanted.
“Here’s the thing: I like the idea of playing hard to get, but when the time comes, I can’t tell if you’re just messing with me to get a free drink or if you’re trying to let me know you’re into me. Girls, in general, are really hard to read! So, something, like teasing and tempting me (but then backing off), isn’t really helping me feel confident and wanted in the situation.” —Cole, 33
5. A woman who does that isn’t the one I want.
“No, I can’t compete when a girl plays hard to get. I did it for years, I fought the battle like so many other guys, but as I’ve gotten older, I’ve realised that the type of girl I want isn’t out to mess with my head or my emotions.” —Pete, 30
6. It’s a major insult.
“I’m not a super-confident guy to begin with, so when a girl is playing mind games — intentional or not — that doesn’t say to me, ‘Hey, I’m interested in you.’ It actually says, ‘You’re the guy on the bar I’m going to f*ck around with until the guy I want to come arrives.’ And that’s insulting.” —Ryder, 25