What Makes a Hero Sexy?

black knight“The hero is sexy,” or some variation, I see a lot when reading reviews. I’m guilty of the same. It got me thinking. What makes a hero sexy? It’s really hard to pigeon-hole as there are many characteristics that can make a hero sexy. Here’s a list of what I came up with:

The White Knight – He’s brave. He’s strong. He’s good. He rescues damsels, even if it’s at an inconvenience to himself. He’s true to his ideals. He wears uniforms — whether it is chainmail or fire resistant or camouflaged, etc. — and he’s proud of the uniform he wears.

The Black Knight – He’s not a polar opposite to the white knight — like he and others think — but he doesn’t hesitate to work outside the law if it suits him. He doesn’t stand for incompetence, rudeness, or laziness. He gets the job done and doesn’t complain. He prefers to be alone and to work alone and can be easily irritated by the interference of others (read, heroine) but melts like butter with the right girl.

The Alpha – He’s confident. He’s popular with his buddies, the ladies, the elderly, kids, and dogs. He’s got solid work ethics, strong morals, and treats his mother well. He can cut loose with the best of them, sweet talk a girl out of her undies in under a minute, and generally oozes sex appeal.

The Beta – He’s quiet. He’s secure in every way from his masculinity to his ideals to his career and in his lot in life. He’s going to hold your hand in public, bring you to the weekly family barbecue, unabashedly carry your very girly purse, doesn’t mind your hot-pink lipstick on his face, and will squire you about town in genuine delight. He’s friend and lover all in one.

There are many more types, of course. The list is not definitive. Several of the qualities can easily describe each of the four hero types. But they are all sexy. What else makes a hero sexy in your book?

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  1. Great post! Thanks!!

  2. A combination of the Black Knight and the Beta please.

  3. Hmmm…I sick of the alpha, I must admit. I like the black knight (because they usually have a dark past/wound, and I like exploring how that shaped them) and the beta (we see far too few of these in recent romance novels in my humble opinion).

    I think what makes a hero sexy to me is when he’s not afraid of his feelings for the heroine, and not afraid to share them with her even if she’s not quite ready to return them. I’ve said this before, but I love the hero who says “I’m yours” as opposed to one who says “you’re mine.” Right now I’m thinking of Winter Makepeace in Thief of Shadows…loved him.

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