Carrie Borzillo is an award-winning entertainment and lifestyle journalist and author of three books: “CHERRY BOMB: The Ultimate Guide to Becoming a Better Flirt, a Tougher Chick, and a Hotter Girlfriend, and to Living Life Like a Rock Star,” Tera Patrick’s “Sinner Takes All: A Memoir of Love and Porn,” and “Nirvana: In the Words of the People Who Were There.”
More than likely, you’ve felt your hairstylist’s breasts brush ever-so-slightly against the back of your neck. Maybe her boobs were staring you straight in your face while getting a beard trim. It’s probably made you wonder, “Are her boobs trying to tell me something?”
9 out of 10 times, the answer is no.
But don’t feel bad for thinking so. You’re far from alone. One hundred percent of the men we polled—20 out of 20—said they are always aware when a woman’s assets touch them, and they always hope it’s a sign of flirting. Due to a man’s natural attraction to and excitement for breasts, it’s almost impossible for them not to be hyperaware when in close contact with a boob.
Louis C.K. once brilliantly observed what every heterosexual man feels. “You always know a tit,” he said during his 2013 HBO special Oh My God. “You ever been in a crowded place, like a subway or a sports stadium, and you’re smooshed in with other people and your elbow touches a tit behind you? You’re like, ‘That’s a tit. I just touched it. I know that was a tit.’ Because the sensitivity of the male elbow to tit flesh, specifically, is unbelievable.”
Michael Castleman, M.A. the author of Great Sex: The Man’s Guide to Whole-Body Sensuality, says that for him at least, not all boob brushes are created equal. “If a gal I don’t know or care about brushes me accidentally on a bus, I don’t care,” he says. “But if a woman I’m hot for brushes or touches me in a more romantic context, you better believe I notice.”
RELATED: How to Handle Her Breasts
Women, on the other hand, don’t think about non-sexual boob contact nearly as much. Most share the opinion of Carla, 36., who told us, “I’ve been in a rush and accidentally pushed my boobs into a guy just trying to get by. If you have big boobs, it’s going to happen a lot and it doesn’t mean anything.”
We polled 20 female hairstylists, and 19 of them claim that any contact made between their boobs and a client during a haircut is always—as in always—an accident.
20 out of 20 answered yes to the following: Do you think men are hyperaware when it happens? Should men just ignore it?
“It’s a hazard of the job when you have to work fast and closely to someone sitting in your chair, especially if you have big breasts,” says hairstylist Katie, 25.
17 out of 20 said they are not self-conscious about it, nor is it an issue. Three said they are uncomfortable, but only out of fear that her male client will misinterpret it and get “creepy.”
Overall, it’s only an issue when men make it an issue.
But what about that one time it’s not an accident?
“I will admit, I’ve worn a lower cut shirt and got closer to a guy who I thought was cute,” says hairstylist Deb, 27. “We did end up dating, but I had to make the first move. It’s never a good idea to hit on your hairstylist. If she likes you, she’ll let you know.”
“At a club, I’ve totally done it on purpose to get a guy’s attention,” says Terra, 30. “But I also made it kind of obvious by smiling at him.”
Next time it happens to you and you wonder, ‘Is she hitting on me? Do I crack a joke? Give a compliment? Make a move?’ The answer is a simple “no”, with one caveat.
Look for other signs of flirting, such as eye contact or body language, before acting on it. (Not sure how to flirt? 20 Women Reveal the Pickup Lines That Actually Worked on Them.)
”You still don’t want to assume anything, but if it’s in a bar or club, you can just start up a conversation,” says Julie Spira, founder of Cyberdating.com. “If she’s touchy-feely, flirts, or is open to chatting, those are the truer signs of interest.”