For some, skin complexion, weight, bad breathe (this should be on the list for everyone), a body part size (ie. butt, breasts, penis, etc) are dating deal breakers that no amount of chemistry can conquer.
I maintain a list of what are clearly superficial dating criteria that I stick to no matter what. I make no apologies for my tastes or preferences even with the disagreement of close friends. “You shouldn’t have such shallow deal breakers," friends plead. Too bad I'm stubborn.
Height is the number one physical characteristic I won’t budge on. (Weight comes in at a close second.) I wont date a man who isn’t at least my height or taller. I stand proudly and confidently at 6 foot without heels. Only once in my dating history have I made an exception. This guy was fine as wine, coming in at only 5 foot 11 inches. That was about the shortest guy I've dated in in my 24 years on this earth.
Of course after I get past the trivial outward appearances of a potential suitor, my list includes more valuable criteria such as a sense of humor, family values and sexual chemistry. Before I can get to those though, he needs to be able to look me in my eyes, without him breaking his neck because of our height difference. I then move from physical characteristics to certain behaviors and personality traits.
Bad taste in clothes, different religion, age, kids, race, money, opposing political views, level of educational attainment, proximity and current living situation are all dating deal breakers for a variety of people. I don't care much about the preceding. On the other hand I am a stickler for proper grammar and feel that text messages are a great way to weed men out. I know, not all people proof their text messages, but there is something to be said for thinking before pressing reply. For actually caring what type of messages you put out into the universe. If I receive a "LOL" in reply to every text message joke I crack, I will assume that you have exhausted your vocabulary at this age and need more time to brush up on the English language before speaking with me again. Constantly using the wrong “too” or “to” is something I'd be willing to work with.
Of course, our standards for what's acceptable and what's deal-breaking depend on how into the person we are. If I’m completely infatuated with someone, I may look over the fact that he occasionally lights a cigarette when he is stressed. However I would be sure to keep a pack of mints in my purse at all times.
I think it’s a good exercise to list your own deal breakers. It helps identify and analyze your own flaws. I could be a good contender with Tyra Banks in a battle for who has the largest head, am usually prompt and expect those around me to be the same, lack patience (I’m working on it but it’s a work in progress) and have feet the size of USS ships, which for some may be a deal breaker. I don’t plan on changing any of those characteristics to please someone else, but I do recognize that I have flaws as well.
When you meet or date a new guy or girl, which idiosyncrasies are okay and which ones send you head first in the opposite direction? Do you have a physical characteristics you expect your mate to posses?