This Is the Single Most Desirable Trait—According to Online Daters

Surprisingly, it's not looks.

Given how important photos are when it comes to online dating apps, it's easy to think that the only thing that people swiping through profiles care about is looks. But, according to a new report by the online dating website eharmony, people may not be quite so superficial when it comes to the quest for true love.

For their 2019 Singles and Desirably study, the platform conducted interviews with more than 1,000 of their users and found that honesty ranked as the most desirable trait in a partner, with 54 percent of participants choosing the characteristic. It was followed by being kind and considerate (44 percent), funny (34 percent), attractive (34 percent), smart (29 percent), thoughtful (28 percent), and happy (24 percent). Given that being considerate ranked so highly, it's also probably no surprise that the most desirable jobs among online daters were doctor/nurse, teacher, veterinarian, and firefighter/police officer—all of which are known for attracting kind souls.

"The data illustrates how Americans have shifted their priorities when it comes to lasting love," Dr. Seth Meyers, a licensed psychologist and eharmony relationship expert, said in a statement. "Instead of identifying physical attractiveness as the most important factor in dating, millennial women are leading the way in showing that finding an intellectual and emotional partner is just as important, if not more."

Singles across all age groups also want someone who is a good roommate and can do some handiwork around the house. Younger people consider a strong interest in food a highly desirable trait, and they're also increasingly looking for someone who wants to stay in rather than go out (which may be why another study found that Netflix is ruining your sex life). And having a dog also made online daters more appealing, given that it shows you're reliable and appreciate unconditional love.

Given that online dating apps have the reputation of furthering today's hookup culture, it might also surprise you to know that the study found that 70 percent of singles on eharmony are looking for a serious relationship as opposed to a casual one. Granted, the survey isn't particularly scientific, but the findings do corroborate recent research that singles today care more about what's going on beyond the surface. For example, a 2018 study found that women are no longer interested in flashy men for longterm relationships and are instead looking for those who are comfortable with commitment.

And for more on who among us is the most honest (and therefore desirable), check out Science Says People with This Personality Trait Are More Trusting.

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Diana Bruk
Diana is a senior editor who writes about sex and relationships, modern dating trends, and health and wellness. Read more
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