By Anastasia Marks
For The Diamondback
This article is part of The Diamondback's annual sex guide. Read the rest here.
Perhaps you're standing with your friends eyeing a potential date, when one of them whispers "he's totally your type."
Having a "type" can be based on a multitude of attributes, from the individual's personality to his or her physical features. While some University of Maryland students said they believe types to be a myth, others said it's a way to narrow down options in a massive ocean of singles.
Freshman Amie Carlson, an economics and psychology major, said she and her friends are attracted to certain kinds of people.
Though Carlson added there's more to her type than just the physical attributes. Physical attraction is usually the initial point of attraction, she said, but personality follows as you get to know the person.
"The more familiar the person is, the more comfortable you are," Carlson said. "Comfort plays into attraction."
Despite the apparent pros of having a type, freshman computer science major Shashwat Kapoor said he doesn't have one, adding he finds the idea to be limiting. Looking for a potential date or relationship based on a certain type can change the way a person looks for love, he added.
"People with no type are more adventurous kinds of people," Kapoor said. "To them, it's just about falling in love."
In fact, Kapoor said he thinks types based solely on physical attraction can potentially result in a toxic relationship.
"It narrows your view on love itself," he said. "A person might be beautiful and people can like that even if their character is awful."
Now before you completely reevaluate your relationship status, or how you go about finding a relationship, Ryan Curtis, a university psychology professor, said he believes types are a real phenomenon.
"People are attracted to similarity," Curtis said. "Similarity equals attraction and compatibility. It's just kind of the way it works."
However, he insists types are not only based on an individual's appearance but their goals and ambitions play an influential role as well.
"Conflicts happen where there are different goals," Curtis said. "It's OK to have standards. What makes people compatible and have a long-lasting relationship is being able to work on it."
Sophomore electrical engineering major Lucie Ugarte also said she thinks types help people determine which qualities they find attractive in others, but they can vary from person to person.
"If a person has a lot of crushes, they see a trend in what they're attracted to," Ugarte said. "But if you limit yourself, it could be bad."