Heterosexual men love to ogle breasts; the bigger(usually) the better and often are one of the first things they look at. Women have more erroneous zones than men and they don’t really have the pleasure of seeing the male penis since it is always covered up. So do women get the same charge out of seeing a phallus like a man would seeing breasts?

  • $\begingroup$ Possible duplicate of What does scientific research say about the relationship between penis size and attractiveness? $\endgroup$
    – Arnon Weinberg
    Commented Dec 1, 2021 at 18:49
  • $\begingroup$ I disagree. The linked question has very little in the way of being a duplicate. "How sexually stimulating is a penis compared to breasts" (I think the question could be generalized and academicized a lot better) is not "are bigger penises more sexually stimulating" $\endgroup$
    – Feryll
    Commented Dec 1, 2021 at 21:23
  • $\begingroup$ I agree the question needs to be more focused to asking for research and theory in this area (in psychology and related fields) $\endgroup$ Commented Dec 1, 2021 at 22:25
  • $\begingroup$ Your Erroneous Zones spent 64 weeks on the New York Times bestseller list. Perhaps reading that book would help. $\endgroup$ Commented Dec 2, 2021 at 2:52
  • $\begingroup$ Note that in some cultures, breasts are normally left exposed and not generally considered sexual parts. $\endgroup$ Commented Dec 7, 2021 at 1:17

2 Answers 2


No, men and women process sexual stimuli differently.

Put succinctly, men are aroused by seeing sexual things, but women typically are not. Women, by contract, are more aroused by sexual relationships, which is why the female equivalent of a pornographic movie is a romance novel.

Here's a quote on the topic from an article on Psychology Today, which is in turn quoting the book A Billion Wicked Thoughts by Ogi Ogas and Sai Gaddam:

"Women respond to a truly astonishing range of cues across many domains. The physical appearance of a man, his social status, personality, commitment, the authenticity of his emotions, his confidence, family, attitude toward children, kindness, height, and smell. . . . Unlike men, who become aroused after being exposed to a single cue, women need to experience enough simultaneous cues to cross an ever-varying threshold. Sometimes, just a few overwhelming cues can take a woman there. Other times, it takes a very large number of moderate cues ... For women, no single cue is either necessary or sufficient" (p. 212).


This goes along with Bem's (1996) developmental theory that proposes that the exotic becomes erotic.

More specifically, this is called the EBE (exotic becomes erotic) theory.

Generally speaking, EBE unravels the biological correlates of sexual orientation. More specifically, Peplau et al. (1998) explains that the theory proposes

that adults are erotically attracted to the gender-based class of peers (males or females) who were dissimilar or unfamiliar to them in childhood.

This theory has been criticized as having several limitations. For example, Peplau et al. (1998) explains that EBE can not be applied to gender diverse individuals

Bem's conceptualization of erotic desire and his analysis of gender nonconformity illustrate this problem.

Moreover, the theory is also criticized for being biased towards the perceptions of men, discounting perceptions of women and gender diverse.


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