Alpha Male vs Beta Male: What’s The Difference?

Traditionally, being an alpha male has meant that you are a man who has a lot -- maybe an overabundance - of confidence, and that you don’t let anything stop you from going after you want.

Alpha males are known for standing up to challenges, having courage in the face of adversity, and relentlessly striving for their goals. If that sounds like you, you definitely have alpha male qualities.


You probably don’t wait around for things to happen or worry about whether or not people like you. You already know when you walk into a room that you have a personality that everyone will be drawn to, and you’ve probably noticed that you’re a natural leader.

Qualities of an Alpha male:

  • Confident in work and personal scenarios
  • Determination to complete projects
  • Lack of fear when making decisions or in stressful situations
  • Commanding yet trustworthy
  • Masculine in attitude and/or appearance
  • Take charge attitude with women

A beta male, on the other hand, will miss golden opportunities because he does not have the confidence to grab what he wants. He will frequently doubt his resolve and let someone else take point in social and professional situations.

With Women...

A beta male may initially be attractive, but it can be hard for him to maintain her attention. Betas struggle to keep the romantic side of a relationship going because women tend to see them as friends versus dynamic, masculine partners.

He may be able to pick up women, but a one-night stand or short-term relationship is all that can be expected unless the beta male learns how to channel alpha characteristics.

Qualities of a Beta male:

  • Confident, but also struggles with personal insecurities
  • Follows a more outgoing male
  • Tentative with women, more likely to be ‘friend-zoned’
  • Second guesses his behavior

For the sake of diligence, we also need to include another male category: omegas.

Omega males are lacking in self-confidence, usually exhibiting quiet or shy personalities. These men are timid with women, so that women see them as trustworthy, but they do not exude the qualities that ignite attraction from women.

They can also be submissive to women, agreeing with everything they say and befriending them in order to get closer to them. This almost never leads to sex or long-term relationships, though.

Qualities of an Omega Male:

  • Often labeled a “good guy”
  • Easily influenced, to the point of being a pushover
  • Submissive to women
  • Hesitates to take charge in relationships and work situations

Of all three types, it’s obvious that being an alpha leads to getting more of what you want.

Before we go any further, let’s clear up a misconception about alpha males. Being an alpha doesn’t mean you’re a jerk. Unfortunately, this is sometimes the case. It is possible to be a really nice guy, to treat people well, and to be well liked and still retain all your alpha male qualities!

More often than not, when you see a guy who mistreats his employees, acts like a jerk to the woman in his life, and has stereotypical “bad boy” qualities, he’s an overcompensating beta trying to look like an alpha.

Today’s alpha male is the epitome of a nice guy, but he’s definitely not afraid to stand up for himself.

Male Hierarchy and Why It Matters

The alpha male is the “leader of the pack,” so to speak. There can be more than one alpha in any given setting, just as there can be more than one beta or omega. However, if the group is large enough, there will be a hierarchy even among the alphas.

Sometimes, men will conceal their alpha-ness because they think (incorrectly) that being an alpha means they will be perceived as a jerk. Unless you are selfish or treat people poorly, this should never happen.

Being an alpha is something to be proud of and should never be concealed. This personality type gets promoted before others, is popular among peers, and can have a beautiful woman on his arm whenever he wants.

Just be sure to demonstrate your alpha characteristics in a positive way, not a negative one.

Here’s what we’re talking about:

Be THIS - The Good Guy Alpha

Being a “good guy” alpha male is totally possible! Without camouflaging your assertive tendencies, you can still be caring, attentive, considerate of others, and charismatic.

There’s nothing wrong with being strong emotionally, mentally and physically. These characteristics do not immediately make you a jerk.

In Fact...

Being able to take control of a situation in order to protect others and ensure their happiness is an endearing quality that will only lead you to be seen as a good leader, genuine friend, and attentive lover.

Women are initially drawn to you because you are the stereotypical alpha, but they stay with you because you continue to treat well and keep the spark alive. When a woman says she’s just looking for a nice guy, what she actually wants is an alpha who knows how to treat her. 

Not THAT - The Bad Boy Alpha

On the other hand, those who don’t know how to manage their alpha status can turn into “bad boy” alphas. These men may have learned in their teens or young adulthood that being an alpha, regardless of how they treated others, still awarded them certain privileges. Therefore, they never took the time to learn how to develop those qualities which make “good guy” alphas so rare and desirable.

In contrast, these men are often unbalanced, leaving those around him confused and defensive rather than calm and happy. They are also selfish and only give love, attention and care when it suits them and serves a particular purpose.

Bad Move...

Women don’t respond well to this hot and cold treatment and will quickly turn their attention to a different alpha who will continue to pour attentiveness into them.

He may have others’ respect, but it is generally only shown out of fear of his unpredictable reactions. He does attract beautiful, desirable women because of his alpha male personality, but it is hard for a “bad boy” alpha to maintain a healthy, trusting relationship.

Alpha Males in the Media

You see alphas on TV and in the movies in virtually every series or movie you’ll ever watch. A defined alpha creates interesting plot twists and complex relationships between the alpha and characters of both sexes.

Placing an alpha in a movie or television show means that he will either become the hero or the one the hero defeats. Here’s what we mean.

Examples of alphas in movies and TV:

  • The Bad Boy

(See the description above for more clarification.)

The bad boy does what he wants, and he doesn’t apologize for anything. While girls may drool over him because of his looks or his bold personality, it’s only the idea of him that they like.

In the movies -- because things always workout the way they’re supposed to -- the bad boy is often beaten out by the good guy, regardless of his rank. 

  • The Beta Turns Alpha

The opposite is true in this movie trope.

In this case, a quiet, unassuming guy ends up saving the day. He’s the one no girl expects to be attracted to, yet by the time the credits roll, he has proven his worth, usually in more way than one.

The good news about these black and white situations is that that it doesn’t take a world-saving, heroine-rescuing moment to become an alpha.


You can demonstrate alpha male qualities in every interaction, no matter how simple or mundane. You see, being an alpha is also about controlling the power that you have. There’s no reason to over-exert your prowess.

As long as you show other people some of your alpha qualities, you don’t have to be overbearing. They’ll definitely recognize those traits and give you due attention and respect.

This scenario is true for men and women alike. Beta males will find you trustworthy and follow your lead without question, while females will find you attractive for reasons that have nothing to do with looks.

How Alphas Attract Women

Alphas attract women by fostering feelings of sexual attraction. When lust fades, alphas can maintain that attraction and extend a relationship past the lust stage. These men can switch from natural, organic chemistry to sexual chemistry whenever they want.

But that doesn’t happen automatically. And it certainly isn’t something that comes naturally for betas and omegas. Alphas understand female behavior and are willing to go out on a limb, with all the charisma and boldness in the world, and ask her for a dance, offer to buy her a drink, or to get her number.

An average looking alpha can still attract gorgeous, classy, independent women. That’s because women don’t see men the same way women see men. Women are attracted to looks, but they also take into account personality. How he makes her feel is more important than any other single factor.  

Here are three ways any many can immediately become more attractive to women:

Make her laugh

  • Laughing makes her feel better. She feels better when she is around you and associates the two.
  • Activates survival mode within her. When you make her and other people laugh, it means you are well liked. A natural instinct within her tells her that you can ensure her survival.

Have confidence

  • Demonstrating emotional strength means that you can handle any situation without getting stressed out or thrown off your game.
  • Being confident is also about communicating well. In many cases, being direct with her about what you want will win over more women than you can imagine.

Demonstrate masculinity

  • A woman wants to feel feminine. To feel this way, she must be led through the courtship, whether it’s a hookup, dating, or a full-blown relationship.
  • Most women have a wide range of men they are attracted to, not a single type. This is great information to have if you don’t have traditional good looks or obvious physical masculinity. It opens the door for practically any man to land any woman he wants.
  • To women, masculinity has less to do with his appearance (height, build, s features) and more to do with your personality. Being assertive, outgoing and in control is far better than just having good looks.

These actions create attraction where there might not have been any to start with. The beautiful thing about attractiveness when it comes to women is that you don’t have to be the best looking man or the most dominant alpha in the room in order to attract the best looking and most sought after women.

Most women respond favorably to an alpha, regardless of how many alphas are in the room. So you really just have to zero in on the one you want, then display some of those most desirable alpha male traits.

Picking up beautiful women isn’t as hard as some people may want you to think…which is another way of saying that being an alpha is easier than you may realize.

Understanding Women and Relationships

As we already mentioned, women want to be courted. When a woman has to do all of the courting or chasing, the relationship loses its allure. Basic human behavior for thousands of years proves that females crave the feeling of being swept off their feet. That’s hard to do if you’re letting her lead the relationship.

A woman may act like she’s not interested, but by acting like the alpha and creating attraction within her, you may be surprised how interested she actually is. Women who act unapproachable may just be screening out the men who are intimidated by them.

When a confident alpha shows not only the nerve to approach her, but also confidence while doing it, she’s very likely to be impressed by him.

Women have a natural desire to surrender or submit to men. When a woman respects a man, she is more willing to surrender herself to him. And, as you might have guessed, it is easier for an alpha male to gain her respect than a beta or an omega.

Alpha Males and Biology

To understand alpha male behavior, all you have to do is look at nature. Alphas, betas, and omegas are everywhere in the animal kingdom. This is literally where we get the phrase “leader of the pack.”

No matter what species, there will be one male who stands out. He mates with all the females of the pack so that his dominant genes continue. In humans, dominant (not domineering) males also have their choice of mates.

Although the human race is no longer in an all-out fight for survival, we still have biology that guides our decisions. A woman is no longer looking for a man who can protect her and meet basic needs like food and shelter, but she is still going to find herself drawn to charismatic, popular men who are more likely to prosper.

You could be a beta male with a well-paying job and a great personality, and a woman may want to be with you, but she will still be attracted to an alpha male, regardless of his social status or finances. That’s because it is personality -- not material possessions -- that attract women.

Why Betas Don’t Get the Girl

Compared to an alpha, a beta is clearly second. The beta often brags about his accomplishments or qualities, whereas an alpha simply gets noticed. He is sometimes a showoff or one-upper, taking every opportunity to show off his alpha-like qualities.

Women can usually see through the talk and realize that this beta is more words than actions, and they quickly become disinterested.

In actuality, a beta who brags and tells endless stories about his shining moments is trying to hide social anxieties and deep insecurities.

Why Omegas Don’t Get Noticed

An omega male is at the bottom of this primal hierarchy. If we refer back to animals and pack behavior, omegas are the last of the pack to eat, often getting only scraps. They either don’t get to mate with females at all, or if they do, they can be killed by stronger, higher ranking males.

Human omegas are equally meek, not drawing any attention to themselves either intentionally (like betas) or unintentionally (like alphas). Omegas often sit back and wait to be noticed.

At a biological level, women are turned off by these men who do not -- seemingly cannot -- stand up for themselves. This has a direct correlation to how he will protect her survival in the future. It also subconsciously hints at his sexual prowess.

Fortunately, a beta or an omega can become an alpha. And it doesn’t require him to become a jerk or settle into a “bad boy” persona. Being an alpha is much more than showing off and grabbing attention. To be an alpha, you need to gain confidence in yourself and take chances that others don’t.

You should also read:

What is a Sigma male?

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