Dating With Science: Women Are Choosy; Guys Are Extremely Not
Science Fact: Guys claim they're looking for specific characteristics in a date, but they'll date women who don't fit those characteristics at all; women will turn down even guys who do fit their requirements.
Explanation: For the most part, mate selection in nature is up to the lady animals. Peacocks strut around flaunting their ridiculous tails in the hopes that peahens will ask them to the bird prom. Male emperor penguins waddle majestically into a crowd of other penguins and go "HROONK HORK HONKK" in the hopes that a female penguin will think "Yes, that is the hottest honking." For most species, it's the males going "Hey, look at this hot mess right here!" and the females who choose from among them.
Humans generally have similar rates of choosiness; girls tend to be a lot more particular than guys. A girl might say "Oh, I want to meet a boy with brown hair and gray eyes who is 5'11" and who likes pet frogs!!" and then they do meet him, but something else about him is a turnoff and they're like "Yeah but shrug," and that is the end of that guy. Conversely, a guy might claim, for example, that he'll only date a girl who's clever and smart and politically liberal, but if he meets a hot girl whose only political opinion is "Balrog Obama did 9/11!" he'll be like "Gosh, you are sooo right, let's hug about it," and will abandon any requirements he ever had.
The Science: One recent study gave some men and women a questionnaire about what qualities they were looking for in a potential date—attractiveness, wealth, family commitment—but when they had all these people speed-date each other, none of their answers actually held up. Women rejected guys who met all their requirements. Guys may as well have written "I require a girl with a torso and/or head" because they wound up liking absolutely anybody who was sufficiently attractive. Their requirements were meaningless.
It's also worth noting the findings from this unrelated study: the hotter a guy thinks a girl is, the more likely he is to think she's interested in him. Even when there are absolutely no signs that this is the case, and even when she is completely adorable and he is merely door able (in that he is capable of using doors). Hotness pretty much causes the male brain to explode into smoke and sparks. A dude could meet Attractive Female Demon and be like "Wow, she has some neat ideas! And by the way I totally have a chance with her."
So What Should I Do About It?
If you're a girl, frankly, you should do nothing. You're already doing it right, unless you feel like you're rejecting guys for no satisfactory reason, but most of us suck, so chances are you're doing fine. You're allowed to revise your expectations on the kind of guy you want.
If you're a guy, it's important to realize that your brain is a moron. If someone just randomly plops a hot girl in front of you and she's like "KILL ALL NERDS," you'll be like "Y-Yeah!" as you furtively hide your leatherbound History of Middle-Earth behind your back. This might get you some short-term agreement points, in that the girl will keep talking to you, but it's not going to lead to anything in the long run. Relationships tend to work out when the couples are emotionally similar, and having compatible personalities is more important than almost anything else in predicting whether or not couples stay together. Relationships based on deception are doomed to failure. Much like the ancient Elvish city of Gondolin, which fell to Morgoth in 510. If any hot girls ask, this is a fact we overheard a passing nerd say while we were doing push-ups.
Do you think guys aren't picky enough?