New Research Study: The Most Desirable Singles of 2014

Everyone’s online dating, but who’s getting the most attention? 

As we enter the busiest season for online dating, one of the ultimate questions on the minds of singles is: “Do I have a new message?” It turns out the answer to this question depends on a whole host of things, including your drinking habits, your income, and your religion.

The PlentyOfFish Research team processed the messaging data from over 81,000 user profiles and 1.8 million messages among the 25 to 35 age group to discover the leading indicators that will determine which singles are more or less likely to receive a message. What did they discover? Women are no longer interested in the bad boy who doesn’t want to settle down, and men are increasingly seeking out educated women who are financially independent. But to a large degree, male and female attractions still follow traditional gender roles; Women still place high importance on a man’s income and men still give precedence to a woman’s age and body size.

Here are the PlentyOfFish key findings from the study:

  • Women between the ages of 25 and 26, receive 14.4% more messages. Women who are 33 years old receive the fewest number of messages
  • Women who are Catholic receive 20% more messages
  • Men who earn between $100,000 and $150,000/year receive 42% more messages
  • Men who want children receive 23% more messages
  • Those who ‘Prefer Not to Say’ if they want children  receive 21% fewer messages, and those who “Don’t want children” receive 42% fewer messages

*compared to the average user on the site within the sample group

How was the PlentyOfFish study conducted?

Two of our leading PhD researchers analyzed over 1.8 million messages and 81,000 heterosexual users over a 7 day period. For the purposes of this post, they focused on US men and women between the ages of 25 and 35 years old. All users must have been members of the site for at least one week. The information in this post is not based on anyone’s opinion or theory. These findings are based on the messaging behaviour of tens of thousands of real American singles sending millions of messages on PlentyOfFish. Here are the study’s results in details:

Who are the most Desirable Singles of 2014?

Women who are 25 years old. Women who are 25 years old receive 14.4% more messages.


Women who have a Post Secondary degree. Women who have a Graduate degree receive 6.45% more messages. Women who have a high school diploma receive 10% fewer messages.


Women who are Catholic. Catholic Women receive 20% more messages.


Women who Drink Often or Socially. Women who Drink receive 4.4% more messages. Women who don’t drink receive 24% fewer messages.

ideal_Man-Woman_Drinking Habits

Women who are Thin. Women who describe themselves as ‘Thin’ receive 41% more messages than the average user.

ideal_Man-Woman_Body Type-13

Women who have been in a Relationship for at least 3 years but not more than 8 years. Women who have been in a relationship for less than one year receive 31% fewer messages.


Men who make between $100,000 and $150,000/year. This group of men receive 42% more messages.


Men who want to be in a Relationship. Men who want a relationship receive 38% more messages. Men who are looking for something casual receive 52% fewer messages.


Men who are Christian. Christian men receive 20% more messages.


Men who have a Doctorate degree. This group of single men receive 33% more messages.


Men who have Brown hair. Brown haired men receive 20% more messages.

ideal_Man-Woman_Hair Color

By combining the leading indicators above, PlentyOfFish has come up with the characteristics that make up the most desirable singles of 2014:



The Ideal Woman of 2014:

  • Catholic
  • Thin
  • 25 years old
  • Post secondary degree
  • Dog Owner
  • Has been in a relationship for at least 3 years but not longer than 8 years
  • Drinks Often or Socially

TheIdealManof2014 (1)

The Ideal Man of 2014:

  • Christian
  • Doctorate Degree
  • Wants a Relationship
  • Makes between $100,000 and $150,000
  • Brown Hair
  • Athletic build

Which characteristics do you think are the most desirable among the opposite sex? Tell us in the comments below.

(Research Credit: Thomas Levi and Steven Oldridge) (Design Credit: Kelsey Bowman)

Sarah Gooding

Posted by Sarah Gooding

By day, Sarah runs the Public Relations team at PlentyOfFish and serves as the company's resident Dating Coach, helping singles maneuver the muddy waters of online dating.
Upon earning a Masters in Business, Sarah joined the team in early 2011 and has been raising the profile of the company and brand ever since. When she’s not playing matchmaker and inspiring singles to pursue love, she can be found skiing the Coastal Mountains, tasting a new red wine, or soaking up exotic new cultures around the world!

3 thoughts on “New Research Study: The Most Desirable Singles of 2014

  1. I think there is an error for “Women who have a Post Secondary degree”. A graduate degree and masters degree are generally considered the same thing .. as per the grouping for the men’s education data.

  2. POF needs a place where people can call out fake profiles, people who no longer look like they do in pics and people they have busted as players. There are too many liars on there. Very sad!

  3. But the most obvious question remains unanswered. How many messages does an average girl receive per week?
    For the record, I’m doing a PhD and have brown hair 😀

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