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College-Aged Women Judge Dating Potential By Men's Hair: Survey

11/06/2012 12:02 am ET

Almost three out of four college-aged women check out a man's hair before anything else and many treat it as a determining factor in whether they'll date him, a new survey for a very interested party finds.

Seventy-three percent of women ages 18 to 24 said hair is one of the first things they notice, according to a national survey of 1,033 young adults conducted by market research firm Kelton for the Unilever brand Axe Hair. Just over half of the women surveyed said it's important to date a guy whose standards for hair are similar to their own, and 58 percent chose "short and clean-cut" as their favorite men's hairstyle.

But men often let women down, said David Rubin, marketing director at Unilever. "Guys don't seem to prioritize how a woman will perceive his hair style," Rubin said. (If only these guys bought more Axe Hair products ...)

Many women look at a man's hair cut as evidence of how confident he is and whether he would be good dating material, but according to Axe's survey, two out of three men ages 18 to 24 prioritize how they want their hair to look over how potential dates might view it.

In conjunction with Comedy Central, Axe Hair plans to highlight this sad gulf in a "Splitting Hairs" comedy tour featuring Abby Elliott of "Saturday Night Live" and "How I Met Your Mother," “Punk'd” personality Owen Benjamin, and David Koechner, who has been seen in "Anchorman," "The Office" and "Talladega Nights." Benjamin and Elliot will debate how men and women think about dating, with Koechner serving as a moderator.

Benjamin, 32, suggested that hair isn't the only problem younger guys have in the dating world. According to Benjamin, they're also forgetting how to interact with others in person.

"I think people rely on texting each other," he said. "[When people come] face to face, a lot of times people are very awkward."

Benjamin, who went to the State University of New York at Plattsburgh, said he knows people who are "legitimately famous" and still can't talk to women in bars. "They'll get their number and then send a winky face," Benjamin said. It seems like guys "just want to send winky faces instead of actually wink at someone," he added.

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