The Sex Appeal of an Accent

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Do you swoon when you hear Idris Elba speak? What about Liam Neeson? What about Clive Owens? I’m not talking about how they look, or their personalities, but simply their voices.

If you answered yes, then here’s my next question: do these accents make a person sexier?

That’s the question I asked my friends on Facebook. And the answer I got was a resounding “Yes!” One friend asked me her own question, which summed the topic up:

“Is that even a real question? Of course accents are sexy!”

I have to say that I emphatically agree. A man is much sexier to me if he opens his mouth and spews an accent. I was recently on a film set and noticed a tall, attractive man. When he started speaking and I heard the British accent, my heart melted a little. He was suddenly even more attractive to me just based on how he sounded.

Which led me to wonder about the sex appeal of accents. What exactly is it about accents that turn us on?

Is it simply the idea of something different? We don’t hear the said accent every day, so it adds to the allure of the person simply because it’s unique. Who wants to hear an average voice saying, “Let me get the door for you,” when you could have a British voice saying the same thing? I don’t know why, but I’d take the second version any day.

Maybe accents seem more sophisticated (at least some of them). Like a fine wine, they have a sense of style. Think about the Bridget Jones movies and X speaking to her. Everything he said had an air of sophistication simply because he spoke in an accent. There’s no doubt that if he’d said the same words with your basic English they wouldn’t have had the same effect.

Which brings me to my third thought. There’s just something endearing about an accent. X in the same movie seemed (at least to me) far more sincere. Was it just his character, or his accent, that added to the sense that he was honest and truly in love with Bridget? I don’t know. I may be stretching here, but I’m sure that some of you will agree with me! And can you imagine if a French actor had played that role? No doubt, the French accent would have had many women shuddering with desire!

Of course, not all accents are sexy. Some accents to me are like nails on a chalk board. Which ones in particular? I’m sure they’re different for all of us. Which ones don’t I like? I pretty much know them when I hear them. Certain “Southern” accents turn me right off (and I’m sorry, New Orleans—I can barely understand what you’re saying, so for that reason the accent isn’t sexy to me.) I don’t particularly find the “Newfy” accent appealing—not in a sense that makes me think of a person as more attractive. I feel the same way about certain Caribbean accents. Sometimes, it just depends on the person.

Clive Owen- Illuminessencemag (Google Images)

An accent is sexier to me if the person speaking has good diction and delivers speech at an easily understood pace. I.e, the person isn’t talking a mile a minute (unless it’s an Italian or other person speaking in his native tongue. Then, I pretty much don’t care what you say—just that it sounds good!).

The romance languages—French, Italian, Spanish—all speak to me and do indeed sound romantic. Either in their native tongue, or when those people speak English in their sweetly seductive accents. The “proper” British accent (not the quick, Cockney one) is delightful. The Irish accent as well. Not so much the Australian accent, but I don’t mind it.

And whatever the heck accent Idris Elba has…or is that simply his own utterly seductive voice?

Idris Elba/Illuminessencemag (Google Images)

I guess there’s just something extra special about someone whispering sweet nothings in your ear in a uniquely sexy voice. Whatever the reason, accents definitely have an appeal, some more than others. And they definitely make a person sexier.

What do you think? Why are accents so darn sexy? And which ones are your favourites?

Kayla Perrin is an internationally acclaimed, award-winning USA Today and Essence best-selling author, with 46 books in print. Perrin is best described as passionate, fearless, motivated and self-driven to excel at whatever she pursues.

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