One study, for example, asked men to rate a 24-year old woman seen in a photograph on a range of personal characteristics.
Some men were shown the photo with a black dragon tattoo on the woman's upper left arm; others were shown the photo without the tattoo.
Further, upon seeing contact, he immediately joined the confederate to put a stop to any further interaction between her and the random individual.
If no men initiated contact with the female confederate after one hour, the observation period simply ended.
But this time, a male confederate who took the lead role.
(The temporary tattoo was 10.5 by 4.95 centimeters in size, and was selected because a survey of five popular tattoos parlors indicated that this was a common design chosen by women.)Meanwhile, a male observer sitting 20 meters away carefully and surreptitiously watched the confederate lying down.
When she began reading her book, he turned on a timer and switched it off when he saw a man make contact with her.
(See this Harris Interactive survey for a fascinating breakdown of who gets tattoos in the United States).
The few studies that have focused on men's perceptions of tattooed women have found that these women are seen in a generally light.
Ample research shows that men are sensitive to a range of physical cues in women, such as a low waist-to-hip ratio, larger breasts, effective cosmetics use, revealing clothing, and wearing the color red (which signals sexual receptivity).