For many of us in the northern hemisphere, winter is finally showing signs of packing up and leaving us alone for a while. People are starting to use their heaters less or, wear fewer layers and, if you live in a paper-thin, central heating-less house in Japan like I do, risk not putting on a woolly hat when going to bed at night.

But winter in Japan isn’t all bad! There are beautiful snow festivals and alternative snow cones to be enjoyed! And, according to a report over on Japan’s R25 news site, even wrapped up in all that winter weather gear, the nation’s ladies still manage to look so very, very cute.

In a survey conducted by Japanese group iResearch, a sample of 300 businessmen aged 25-34 were asked to list the little things that they’ve noticed girls do during winter that they just can’t help but find adorable. Although at first we struggled to come up with that many of our own, reading through the results of the survey, we definitely found ourselves nodding along here.

  • She’s all bundled up

In at number one with 35.3 percent of the vote, the thing that men really love about girls during winter is the way they tuck themselves in and brace against the cold. It’s an entirely normal, everyday action, but men find it completely adorable nonetheless. Wrapped in their soft scarves with their faces partially hidden, tucking their heads down low to avoid the bitter winter wind makes a girl “look like a little cute animal,” said one 28-year-old man, “It makes me want to look after her.”

  • Hiding her hands in her sleeves

“Her cute little fingertips peep out at the bottom,” said one young man explaining why he was so fond of the sight of a girl with her sweater sleeves pulled down over her hands. He’s not alone either: this vulnerable pose stole the hearts of as many as 32.7 percent of the total men surveyed. Sure, it’s kind of cute, but – at least to us, anyway – far cuter than this is a girl who has cottoned on to the fact that she can keep her hands warm and avoid stretching out their sweaters all at once by investing in a decent pair of gloves.

  • Blowing on her hands to warm them up

At first I scoffed at this one; I’ve seen big, hairy Liverpool dockers do this and there’s nothing cute about it. But the more I come to think about it, I have to admit that girls warming their hands up in this way is, for some reason, quite cute (even if that does have more to do with basic human instincts than the gesture itself…). Even so, 32 percent of the guys asked agree that this simple sight makes them feel all fuzzy inside.

  • Hanging on to a warm cup for dear life

Thanks to the abundance of hot drink-dispensing vending machines in Japan, this is something that guys get to witness pretty much anywhere, indoors or out. While for many it’s a simple case of trying to warm their hands up enough so that their fingers don’t move like they used to belong to a 90-year-old, this everyday action has many men going weak at the knees- 28.7 percent of them, in fact!

  • “Is it me, or did you just get snuggly?”

Finally, in at number five with 27.7 percent of the vote, the survey revealed that men simply love the way girls feel during the colder months.

“I find myself wanting to touch her more in winter;” said a 25-year-old office worker, “she wears big, fluffy sweaters.”

Although this one isn’t technically an action or a gesture that girls do so much as the way men think and feel, R25’s resident mental health expert Chie Odaka suggests that things such as soft, fluffy clothing actually make women appear more feminine in men’s eyes.

But surely the women in the northernmost reaches of Scotland or Nova Scotia aren’t being constantly hit on by whiskey drinking men in pubs on account of the deluxe lamb’s wool sweaters they’re wearing? Wouldn’t skimpier outfits work better on us simple male beasts? Apparently, it’s not always about showing off all of the goods at once, with Odaka suggesting that we men “have a natural instinct to pursue what is only partially revealed.”

It would seem that, given only a glimpse of the female form- be it the tips of her fingers poking out from her sweater sleeves or that “absolute territory” between the top of her stockings and her mini skirt, “men become completely captivated.” And here’s me thinking that we were intelligent, evolved beings…

Until next winter, ladies!

Source/title image: Web R25