By Rikki-Lee Arnold
December 07, 2012
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FOR many seasons on US television show Grey’s Anatomy, young intern Meredith Grey pined after Dr Derek Shepherd, aka Dr McDreamy.
From his piercing blue eyes to his perfectly still hair, he was the dreamiest man in medicine.
And before him we were swooning over Dr Doug Ross, played by the one and only George Clooney, in ER.
While these men will forever just be doctors behind our screens, apparently most women still dream of the day a Dr McDreamy walks into their lives.
And it’s not just women — most men believe they could be seduced by a sexy young secretary a la Alan Rickman’s office affair in Love Actually.
A study conducted by AshleyMadison.com has revealed what professions men and women find the sexiest — with few surprises.
For men the sexiest profession for ladies was secretaries followed by models, waitresses, nannies and exotic dancers.
Women chose a little differently with doctors rating as the No.1 sexiest profession for men followed by athletes, actors, politicians and lawyers.
But what is it about these professions that make them so irresistible?
MEN ARE FROM MARS…
For Desiree Spierings, director of Sexual Health Australia, men and women are still quite different in how they view the opposite sex.
Spierings says an “unconscious evolutionary perspective” plays into choices about what is “sexy”.
“Men need to spread their seed,” Spierings says.
“Therefore they will go for attractive, young and beautiful because, in a way, beauty equals health.
“Many women still think they need to select a man who will be able to provide for their offspring and who will stick around to take care of them.
“They don’t go, ‘I choose you for your money or health’. The genes make sure this is part of our selection process and we genuinely and automatically find these people more attractive.”
Spierings says despite feminist movements to banish the idea of women needing strong men and men needing beautiful women, our genes are yet to catch up.
“In terms of sex appeal, and for a sexual relationship, I completely believe that the list of sexiest professions reflects who we are attracted to automatically,” she says.
But is it just our genes that contribute to these ideas of the sexiest professions?
It’s a bit like the chicken or the egg, Spierings says. It has to be questioned whether a woman’s attraction to doctors came first, or hot actors playing TV doctors.
POP GOES THE CLICHE
From Mad Men’s secretaries to the Jude Law nanny scandal, there are many ways these professions have been sexed up through pop culture, says writer and commentator Dr Lauren Rosewarne.
While Rosewarne agrees women are attracted to men based on status and money, she says the media helped sexualise these professions to make them more intriguing.
“Professions such as secretaries and waitresses are often considered subordinate so they may play into men’s domination fantasies,” Rosewarne says.
“Men may similarly be drawn to the tight-fitting skirts or ’50s style diner outfits for waitresses. Of course, these ideas all come from popular culture.
“As for what women look for in a man, low-status, low-paying jobs are very rarely presented as sexy on screen so it is unsurprising that those jobs
that are portrayed as sexy, such as medicine, strongly influence an audience’s perception of what is attractive and what is aspirational.”
So if you find yourself swooning over a stranger in scrubs or a sexy secretary, remember — it’s a heady mix of genetics, hormones and pop culture. Or, perhaps you’ve just met your McDreamy.
IT COULD BE WORSE
IF you’re not a dreamy doctor, a supermodel or a sexy secretary, spare a thought for the people in our list of least sexy professions.
Telemarketers: On the bright side, they probably will call when they say they’ll call — but they’ll also call during meals, your favourite TV show and too early on a Saturday morning.
Fishmongers, butchers and abattoir workers: Not for vegetarians, or anyone. The smell of fish and meat gets in the pores of your skin and it lingers.
What Kenny did: Someone’s got to do it and we salute them for it, but the human waste disposal industry is not a turn on.
Funeral home worker: Six Feet Under did a lot to help the profile but most people would be a little bit taken back meeting a mortician on a night out.