Experts explain his preoccupation with your tush.
The butt is definitely having a moment: Nicki Minaj exists, yoga pants are a thing, and women everywhere are squatting their way to more shapely backsides.
But of course, the male obsession with the female butt is nothing new. In fact, it’s primal, says David Buss, Ph.D., a psychology professor at the University of Texas at Austin.
Men are drawn to a woman’s heinie for the same reason they’re attracted to breasts, hips, and a little waist: because those traits would have been indicators of fertility to your ancient ancestors, says Buss.
Man evolved to seek out women who could procreate, says Buss. If a woman has a full tush, that’s a signal to your primitive brain that she’s probably carrying enough fat to become pregnant, he says. And if her bum is perky and round, that means she’s probably young—which, in caveman days, would make her a good candidate to carry the cavechild.
And then there’s the dirty factor.
“It’s a taboo,” says Eric M. Garrison, a sex expert and author of Mastering Multiple Position Sex. “We’re not allowed to go there. And when it comes to sex, there’s something animalistic and dirty about mounting from the rear.”
Geography and culture can sway just how into fannies men are. For example: 59 percent of Argentinian men dig butts even more than boobs, a University of Buenos Aires study found. But British men don’t pay all that much attention to the booty, according to University College London research.
Regardless of where you live, though, the bottoms are rising to the top.
“Pop culture is celebrating the butt more and more these days,” says Ava Cadell, Ph.D., author of NeuroLoveology. “With the mainstream appeal of celebrities with big butts like Jennifer Lopez and Kim Kardashian, women want to emulate the way they look and flaunt their own booty to get attention.”
Thanks to the trend, doggy style and spanking are more popular than ever, says Cadell—and even anal sex is going mainstream. Of course, that doesn’t mean you need to change anything about how you look (or have sex). But now at least you’ll know why he spends so much time eyeing your backside.