As you know, I love psychology and I like to use science for all the articles on this website.
And I was really looking forward to writing this article on the psychology of players and womanizers.
By the end of this article, you will know what types of players are out there and what drives and motivates them from a psychological point of view.
Most evolutionary psychology literature (Moral Animal ; Selfish Gene) see humans as maximizers of genes’ reproduction possibilities.
Humans are often seen as being the middle of the male parental investment index, and maximizing the chances of reproduction comes in two forms:
- Find (easy) women to impregnate and abandon
- Get serious with a high-quality woman and grow children with her
That means that most guys, even in a relationship, will have an instinctual drive to look for other women to have sex with (read more on why people cheat).
Especially if those other women are attractive and seemingly easy.
And that also means that most philanders will somewhat long for a more serious relationship.
Many players indeed have a tendency to stick to some women they cross path with.
The player/relationship guy is a continuum and few, if any, are 100% either of them.
But albeit there’s almost always some element of both player and relationship in the same man, some men tend to be (far) more on the right or (far) more on the left.
Relationship guys tend to provide and invest for their women, and they place a higher value on non-physical attributes that players do (ie.: personality, intelligence, see Regan, 2000).
While players tend to prefer youth and looks and they provide little and invest, at most, emotionally.
What players promise is an adventure, a whirlwind of romance and, possibly, great sex (just writing about it makes me misty-eyed longing for more adventures :).
For a more in-depth analysis and examples see:
This post will provide you now with the archetypes of players:
#1. Love Women Player
I have loved women even to madness..
The above is a quote from the most famous womanizer of all. And the best of all to epitomize the type of player with a boundless love for women: Giacomo Casanova.
And I absolutely love that quote.
It’s a myth that all players are manipulative and deceptive and it’s not true that all players “only want to fu*k women”.
Casanova type of players will really love you. And love you deep and passionately. But the problem for some of those women is that “women” is plural. Indeed the next part of Casanovas’s quote is
“.. But I loved freedom above all”.
Casanova types of lovers will remember you forever, think of you fondly, or even get heartbroken when they depart… But they do depart.
These types of players love the feeling of romance.
And the goodbye is often part of the romance. There is a bitter-sweet, poetic touch in goodbyes.
I know it will sound nonsense to some of you, but some of my favorite moments of a sexual encounter are walking her back.
And some of my sweetest memories are farewells to lovers who moved away (or stayed when I moved away).
To you, it means you must watch out.
The Casanova type of player is the kind of player who is most likely to break your heart.
Because he will enter into your life with a whirlwind of romance and passion. Something you’ve never experienced before.
And it will be amazing… Until he needs to go for another romance.
Do They Stop?
This is the archetype of the “ever-moving womanizer”.
They will always keep an eye open for other women. And if Casanovas stop, they often won’t be truly happy -and will possibly cheat-.
#2. Artistic Players
Life is short, might as well enjoy it
The artistic types love art and beauty, and women are part of that art and beauty.
Some of them have a touch of madness and irrationality or a mean streak… Which are all very alluring in seduction. Some of them have a light sadness about them, a veil of depression, a need to be taken care of -which women love to provide-.
This is an example of a boy who’s too much at the mercy of his own emotions to fully cater -or be swayed- by her.
Which is attractive.
And this is an example of a more languid, more attractive artist from the movie Vicky Christina Barcelona:
Do They Stop?
They might, but that might also mean that as they get tamed, they also lose their best artistic talent.
#3. Opportunity Player
I’m popular, might as well take advantage of it..
Some guys stumble upon the player’s life because of their lifestyle. They might become wealthy and powerful, or famous, or grow to be highly attractive men.
They have many women vying for their manhood and… They simply take advantage of that.
Many men in college -at least the attractive ones- are a type of opportunity players as the environment tend to be more libertine (at least for the top men).
Do They Stop?
These are “womanizers by opportunity”, and once they get their fill -or once opportunities dwindle-, they stop, yes.
And if they’re the type of men who want a family, they will stop for sure.
Just make sure they’ve had enough playing time though.
#4. Infatuation Players
Short bursts of relationships
These guys are not notch collectors but more relationship guys.
We could even argue if they are real players since they tend to stick with one girl.. At least as long as they’re together. A
nd that’s the whole point.
These guys are enamored with the infatuation period of love, lasting a max of around 2 years. After that, they’re onto the next relationship.
Do They Stop?
Yes, they can stop. It will take an amazing woman, as Clooney said… And some years of play time. Then, after they’ve strung a few, they will be looking for a woman they can really get along well with and stop.
#5. Thrill Seekers
Life Is a String of Adventures
These guys are adventurers at heart. They don’t put women first like the Casanovas. Women are part of the thrill, but they don’t sweat it too much if they don’t get it and usually don’t get too hooked on women when they get them.
They tend indeed to move to the next thrill, whether the girl moves with them or not.
Do They Stop?
Yes, they can. There are three options:
- A stable woman between thrills
- A woman who goes on adventures with them
- When there are no thrills left or they’ve had their fills
Note that option two can be a but unstable. Women tend to they reach a point in life when they prefer to settle down. If the man doesn’t reach that point at the same time, it could create an issue.
#6. Charmer Players
What’s Life Without a Flirt
Some players enjoy the social power of their charm almost as much as they enjoy women.
They are indeed social charmers first and foremost (check The Art of Seduction) and see women as one of the great pleasures of life.
Jack Nicholson is a good example of this category. Notice how he relishes his own power on her, and notice how affable he is with the interviewer as well:
Do They Stop?
Most of these guys do build families, but some fail to adapt to the committed life -and properly respect their women-.
They keep paying flirty compliments to the waitress and throwing sensual smirks at the clerks. Maybe with their wives on their side. Quite disrespectful and childish, we could argue.
#7. Big Pursuits Players
A pleasurable break from my other pursuit
This is the James Bond type of players.
But, as much as they might seem on the opposite spectrum to the superficial observer, also Einstein-types.
This type of player likes women of course, but he has bigger goals and drives in his life and can’t commit. He’s a bit like the Casanova type, but not as emotionally dangerous.
While Casanova lives for women and romance and falls in love passionately, James Bond has a bigger loyalty to his mission.
Which is also part of his allure.
Notice that all players will enjoy the line “I’ll be back”. Another give away for you: players like players’ characters.
Do They Stop?
Yes, they can stop.
That happens when their main hustle becomes not so important anymore. It shouldn’t just be their main hustle that ends though, but their drive behind the hustle as well, or they might look into something else.
This might happen if they:
- Achieve their goal
- Reach a comfortable enough position they’re happy with
- Change mindset
- With a certain age the urge for family gets bigger than their goal
- The woman becomes part of the hustle (ie.: business partner)
#8. Validation Player
Whose hole is he filling?
I like keeping it classy, but I couldn’t think of a better pun.
The Mask of Masculinity talks about these types of men. They need to sleep and get on with women because that’s how they get their validation.
These type of players have a hole to fill, and they think sleeping with women makes them cool. So they brag about it.
It’s the guys who brag (lie) about sleeping with thousands women.
Or the Cassanos, Italian football player who laughs talking about his crazy escapades and literally breaking beds (he says, at least, link is in Italian).
Do they Stop?
Some lose their drive eventually and settle down.
Some others slow down once they feel they have slept with enough women, and then they are “free” to move on to other life pursuits.
The real question though is if they’re good men to stop with.
If their only drive was the validation through women, they might not have much going in their lives.
And that makes them rather low-quality men.
#9. Addicts Players
Sex addicts need women to appease their urges, whether they seduce them or pay them. But this category can also mix sex addicts with substance addicts, in which case it makes these men very low quality partners.
Charlie Sheen, whom allegedly spent millions hiring prostitutes, is an example.
Do They Stop?
Yes, once they get completely clean.
When that happens, the woman can actually come to replace the drugs and the crazy life. If that’s the case he will love you above everything else. The woman, in those cases, also comes to be his conduit to sanity and “clean” life.
And if she leaves them, they might go straight back into drugs.
Be ready to bounce if they relapse though: it’s a slippery slope from there and you don’t want to be dragged down.
#10. Gold Diggers Players
Gold diggers are more frequently women, but that doesn’t mean that no curry favors for money.
As a matter of fact, as the society moves more and more towards equality -albeit we’ll never likely reach full equality-, the number of male gold diggers increases.
They don’t usually make for great partners as they can be very materialistic, self-centered and have little skills to live on their terms.
That means they become fully dependant on her, which in the long run often turns out to be a turn off for her.
As we have seen labeling everyone as a “player” is a big catch-all phrase that means little.
Same as it would be labeling a category of women as “who*es”, after all.
There’s one last category of “players”, but they’re so disgusting that I didn’t want to poison this article with them :).
It’s the “pig players”, such as those who abuse their position of power to get sex in exchange for preferential treatment (or the fake promise of preferential treatment).
Weinstein was such an example.