Savage Love Letter of the Day: What's the Big Deal About Big Dicks?


How come women prefer penises a little larger than normal?

The same reason women (on average) find men with broad chests, muscles, and wider brows more attractive - these attributes signify high testosterone levels, which is (or at least was) associated with being a more effective protector and provider.

I think it is almost solely a result of female choosiness.

With the advent of birth control, modern women can and do apply different criteria when choosing men for sex and choosing the potential father of their children. It's almost a cliche that once their biological clock starts its proverbial ticking, women stop dating fuck boys and ultimately settle down with a nice, loyal, stable "beta male" to raise a family.

So sure, it's all mediated by female choice, but there are more choices available now than there were when we used to catch our dinners with spears. If evolution is favoring any particular type of man today, it seems to be guys with dad-bods and khakis.
There's very little work done on penis size preference and most of it doesn't involve looking at actual penises on actual men. Personal recall and the ability of the average human who isn't a carpenter or in similar field to accurately measure the size of a dick in action being what it is, you can't trust what other people think 5" looks like (fun experiment if you're bored at work/school - draw a 5" dick, show it to people. I did, was told by women repeatedly it was quite big. So.... Also if you're handy a doodling or Photoshop, slap the same size dick on a skinny guy 5'2" and a 6'5" big dude. You will get different cock size assessments I assure you.). The actual experiments you'd have to run to find out properly - blindfolded women penetrated in random sequence by a variety of penises, w/ preferences recorded by, I dunno, holding up those signs they use for figure skating score are both difficult to fund and find volunteers for. What I was able to find by perusing the literature (which as a science person I'm surprised the LW didn't do as he seems to be operating completely in the dark due to 1) not sounding like a penetratee 2) really reflecting standard cultural bias), was that women who said they preferred larger penises (without any real scale as to what this actually meant) had the following qualities - their first masturbatory experience was penetrative and they tended to be from conservative backgrounds/significantly religious. This makes sense as to the masturbatory choice/preference (not one's typical initial foray due to intimidation, difficulty level and lack of efficacy for most women), and should calm everyone way the hell down. Most women masturbate prioritizing their clit. Only 10% of women fell into the category of penis size mattering (by their own perception - being in a conservative culture and strictly religious I wouldn't be entirely sure they'd fucked around enough to even know, might just be going by their husband's claim and.... yeah. Sure, that's not zero percent, but it's probably a vocal minority 'cause 1) body shaming sure is fun apparently and 2) most women will tell you it doesn't matter, so those who do think it matters feel defensive and push the point. I can see dick size for anal sex being different possibly, I haven't looked to see if anyone has done any work on that.
The LW may enjoy the BBC doc "My Penis and I" and the sequel, I think "My Penis and Me", or just look up whatever stats there are about most men thinking their penises weren't good enough. I can only assume this comes from the same cultural font of bullshit that makes women insecure about every aspect of their bodies too.
"I think it is almost solely a result of female choosiness."

Yeah? Any ladies out there screening dates primarily by cock size?

Might want to look at dildo sales first, taking into account due to wrist angle length isn't going to be informative.
While that first guy has a lot of interesting points, he’s absolutely wrong when he says that homosexual couples preferences don’t matter. Gay couples can absolutely procreate using their own genes (including those for penis size) via invitro fertilization with a surrogate. If you were to assume (and it would obviously be a broad generalization but let’s pretend) that a large penis is attractive in a gay mate, then individuals with larger penises would be more likely to find a partner and settle down to procreate via a surrogate. Thus you would get a trend towards larger penises being pushed by the gay community along with the straight community.

"Women stop dating fuck boys and ultimately settle down with a nice, loyal, stable "beta male" to raise a family.

Can we not make the same point that so do dudes?

The alpha male thing - important to note that if you are still ovulating on your birth control method you will still prioritize "alpha males" to fuck when ovulating - they don't prioritize marrying "beta males" - they marry decent human beings, some of which are alpha males. Who wouldn't marry a hot piece of ass if they were into it?

Prioritizing someone who is able to be a good parent has been an evolutionary advantage since women had a choice in the matter, relatively recent phenomenon. When we were still primates infanticide by dominant males and no choice in the matter being the bigger issues. That is arguably what we evolved for.
@5 - I know we're still primates, but you know what I mean. Before we were people. Only pretty recent that we have been. The question is - do female apes prefer bigger penises?
Perhaps women prefer slightly-above-average penises because the average penis length is six inches, while the average vagina length is eight inches, so that the average vagina can accommodate the majority of penises, instead of half of them being too large. Therefore, the best fit for your average-vaginaed lady is an above-average-dicked man.
@6 the thing with looking at apes and their sexual preferences is that they're our evolutionary cousins, not our evolutionary ancestors. Their sexual preferences are a result of different evolutionary pressures. So while the answer to your question would be interesting, it isn't going to answer the question about the penis preferences of our ancestors.

Most penetratees I know are more interested in penisbgirth than length, so I always wonder what people mean when they say big. Do they really mean girth, or do they mean length. Pop culture and porn culture focuse on length, but it seems that actual people care more about girth
@4: the LW sounded sophisticated enough to know that, now, with modern medicine, gays can pass on their genes without having any distasteful mixed-gender sex. He was talking about evolution which operates over generations. Generations in the future? Sure, if enough gay men prized big dicks enough that more were selected to co-parent through a surrogate AND the big-dicked partner was the source of the sperm. Likewise, if lesbians preferred some physical trait in their partner, and that partner choose to get pregnant, those preferences will be slightly (because gays are a big fraction of the population) selected for in future generations.
I have to be careful when I'm dildo shopping, because I want the big 'uns, but I've found that when I get them home they are actually too big and I don't enjoy them. My eyes are bigger than my pussy. Sure we all like getting stretched by a big dick, but big is awfully relative and it is pretty hard to measure how much space you have to fill.
Back to sexual signaling: Yes, part of it is the opposite sex selecting for traits that reflect on the health of the mate (you can't make a huge peacock tail, rams' horns, deer's antlers, etc without being healthy). Also, you can't live long enough to develop a large body / horns / antlers in many species without having been well-suited to your environment.

But another part of sexual signaling is to your own gender. If one male is big enough, strong enough, or showy enough, other males won't even try to compete. Elephants in musth do this - younger males avoid the older, stronger bulls. Not only does he gets all the females, but he doesn't even have to fight (as often) for that. Is the 5'2" guy going to come to blows with a 6'4" guy over a woman? Not often. Jared Diamond argues, on the basis of penis size and testicle volume that humans are in the middle of the promiscuity spectrum among primates. We have proportionally smaller penises than primates that do more sexual signaling with their genitals (but bigger than less promiscuous Gorillas who have 4" penises). And our testicle volume is larger than strictly monogamous species but less than species which are always partner-swapping.
@7 average dick length is 5", average vagina is 2.5". Vaginas stretch.
@7 also, vaginas can't feel much more than an inch or two inside. That's how people forget tampons and cups up there, lose condoms for days, etc. Plus it's dark.
@3 Many apologies, question should have been directed to vagina havers looking for penis havers.
Evolutionary biologists have discovered that neither 'the size of the boat' nor 'the motion in the ocean' matters nearly as much as getting the ship into port and keeping it docked long enough for all the sailors to disembark.
@8 yes to girth, but correlation between length and girth possible, I've got a link to dick measurement (not self-report/perception/preference) I'll get in here when I'm not on a phone (metastudy, couple years back). It's relevant to study apes 1) the work is more likely to get done 2) cousin's yes but if you have traits that travel in all of them odds are good it travels in us, plus if genetic you'd be able to look at that easy once you found the genes 3) you get an honest answer from an ape. We haven't evolved that far out impulse-wise, see current president.
@8 what I'm saying is, I'm 100% sure that I can pick out the handsomest gorilla just as well as another gorilla can. We know chimps can point out, and prefer to masturbate to, what humans would consider the hottest human. So...
@10 I think it's also that issue where you look at your teeth, say, and they look normal, but if you run your tongue along the length of one it seems huge, massive, at least an inch, right? Maybe two ? Vaginas same way (penis owners, if you didn't know this, your cock gets same boost). Plus dicks are squishy and dildos tend not to be, and as you've found out, a mere 1/4" difference can be impossible to overcome. Also dildos aren't attached to life-size dummies and we rarely see severed dicks so it's hard to compare. Looking at the most popular dildo models, they tend to be same as actual average dude size.
OMG. Can we just point out that evolution takes a REALLY LONG TIME and that for the vast majority of human history and the vast majority of women currently living today, selecting a mate by penis size is not and has not been a thing. I mean, does this guy think women have largely even been in a position to say who they are going to reproduce with much less to see them naked first and choice them according to dick size? That some women have those options very recently is not enough to effect evolution for christs sake. And women now in places where they might have those choices even still aren't picking up guys and asking them to see their dicks first, and what you want to fuck probably isn't always the exact same thing as what qualities you'd like to be a good partner (it's not like sexual preferences mean you are going to reproduce with those people) seriously this whole thing is just mad.

I bet this LW is the sort of guy that won't eat tomatoes because cave men didn't or something.
And to this guy:

"It's almost a cliche that once their biological clock starts its proverbial ticking, women stop dating fuck boys and ultimately settle down with a nice, loyal, stable "beta male" to raise a family. So sure, it's all mediated by female choice, but there are more choices available now than there were when we used to catch our dinners with spears. If evolution is favoring any particular type of man today, it seems to be guys with dad-bods and khakis."

I just want to say, get out of whatever boring fucking suburb you are spending your life in and see the vastness of humanity. You're deep in a particular pile of shit, man.
@18 women being able to select a mate at all hasn't been much a thing until recently. With mice you can impose Evo change in pretty short time, matter of years. Humans? Good goddamn luck. You do need to talk millennia.

That said, cross cultural study worthwhile. Compound would be you'd need some matriarchies in there where women were setting the trend, cause for dudes being big in general is social advantage (height, width, hell some studies show you get paid more as a dude if you're fat just because you're bigger). I think this means the only ones who know the answer are lesbians.
@9 the trait would be genetic in order to be evolved, so size queen gay guys would have size queen sisters, moms, and straight brothers (see: all of straight porn made for straight guys - wait a minute guys, is it your personal preference for big cock that you are ascribing to women?). Most gay guys in history would have had kids w women anyway, most do now. Gay men are not left out of evolution, their preferences matter bc they are shared and possibly at least currently due to increased freedom of sexual expression and preference among gay men vs. women and straight guys, could be a more true expression of human preference for big cock than that of women.
@21, or would have size queen dads, excuse the lapse
@19 agreed. Anyone using a alpha or beta male like it's a thing gets severe sideeye.

@11 don't gorillas have 1" penises?
@15 you only need one sailor, and the bastards swim
@18 I also find I run into a lot of resistance when on a first date I demand that the guy drop trou and get hard before the appetizers arrive just to see if he's worth even speaking to. As that's how we clearly evolved, you think he'd do it instinctively and without nearly as much fuss.
Checking his teeth, gums and under his eyelids for health while asking him to run a few windsprints and jump real high I like to save for after dessert. More of a challenge that way.
Evolutionary advantage of small cock - can fuck everyone! Not so if too big. Broken penis = no descendants.
@26 Especially if it's his "peacock tail"!

You could argue thats what dick pics are about, but do women across all cultures universally love dick pics? From any dude at all? Unsolicited stranger dick pics (obv only from alpha males) especially?
@20 confound, not compound. And now I need to stop procrastinating!
@1 90% plus of food in hunter/gatherer societies is gathered, that 10% almost always shared among entire group. So dude good w his spear has no advantage over any other dude.
@7 I hear the real deal is girthiness rather than length
Um, this extremely overthought natural selection letter ignores the glaring fact: until extremely recently in humanity's history, women more often than not did not get to choose the man they married & made kids with. Even when they do, they most certainly did not get to sample lots of dicks to make that decision. Still that way in half the earth.
@9 the genetic children of a same-sex couple can only be the genetic offspring of one parent or the other - but not of both. So the traits that drove the biological parent to select the partner will not be passed down and are this immune to selective pressure.
@13 if that's the case you should take your vagina to the doctor (provided you actually have a vagina)

Sure, you can't really feel a tampon if it's inserted correctly, but it's not numb in there after a couple inches.

I pray you are a troll, have a blessed day!
@20 Not just that, but mate selection hasn't typically been something done by individuals alone- at least not in recorded history. It's been a lot more about wealth and family position, social role, etc. The idea that individuals could select one another based on physical attractiveness alone in some sort of vacuum to the point that one physical trait unrelated to other societal advantages or health benefits (and this among the ones that have already managed to survive childhood) would've had some sort of evolutionary advantage is already ludicrous, and that this selection would've been made based solely on the sexual satisfaction of individual women- a group that historically had their sexuality mostly repressed and unexplored, the ones that didn't eventually die in childbirth or live with constant UTIs and fear of pregnancy- is just so fucking laughably absurd that I don't for a second believe that this LW has any qualifications in this field at all despite what he says. He certainly has neither imagination nor a sense of history. This idea that any individual- man or woman- chooses another individual mate based only on individual personal preferences (companionship, attraction, sex) is brand spanking new (historically) and most limited to Western cultures even now.
@24: my 4" figure was from memory. A little googling finds a lot of references to 3 cm = 1.25 for average gorilla penis size.
I'm just laughing now at the idea of a wealthy merchant family in the past with a pretty young virgin daughter who comes with a few head of cattle as lucrative dowry. They figure they are in a pretty good position to marry into a local ruling family and get some political connections in the deal. The eldest son of one of these families is interested in marriage (and the cattle). The girl's dad suggests the idea to his virgin daughter. "Would you marry this boy?" "Oh no, daddy," the virgin answers, "you see, sexual satisfaction is very important to me, and I need a husband with a big penis." Female sexuality was basically an ignored or repressed thing throughout most of recorded time. Women were still discovering what an orgasm is in the 1950s. And as sex was tied up with pregnancy and pregnancy was incredibly dangerous (even when you survive it, you then have to deal with all the side effects and complications) and then you were handling babies.

It's MEN that have been obsessed with dicks, and certainly men that saw the majority of them, and though there are certainly some women now (in non-traditional cultures) who have the freedom to indulge a preference for large dicks, I wouldn't go so far as to claim that it isn't still men who are most obsessed with dick size. Also preferences for dick size change with culture and history. There's a reason all those statues and paintings of beautiful naked boys and warrior chiseled naked men had small dicks- and it wasn't because artists like Michealangelo didn't have enough imagination or interest in cock to make them bigger.
I always preferred large dicks until my last bf proved me wrong. His was on the small side of average, but with good girth. The catch was that I had to figure out what to do with it- for me that took months of experimenting with different positions. I stayed too long with him because the sex ended up being amazing once I figured out his dick- sweet, intimate, tender, hot, passionate and lots of cuddles. I'm sad that it didn't work out, but at the very least I learned that size doesn't really matter if you have good chemistry, pussy and ass eating, lots of nip stimulation and are compatible in bed.
also it's way easier to give head to an average sized dick than a big one- at least as a woman. Maybe men's larger jaws make it irrelevant to gay guys, but for me, blowing a really big guy really is a job.
Omg...yea, that too Emma. Easier to give head to an average sized guy.
The way the letter writer phrased the question already reveals a phallocentric bias that's going to inhibit good scientific inquiry. The question may not be: "What size penis do women prefer?" It may be: "What is the collection of attributes that make various populations with varying genomic predispositions towards varying sizes of penises more or less likely to pass on those genes and in what proportions?" Keep in mind that it's not just about the man or traditional mate selection. It's also about the genes the female partner in reproduction (who may or may not be a physical partner in reproduction today) passes on. Looking strictly at heterosexual couples, a female doesn't necessarily pick a penis. She likely picks a mate based on a collection of attributes, and some of those attributes may in fact correlate with a population that is more or less likely to have a certain penis size. The penis is along for the ride, as it were. Unless you look at all of the factors affecting reproductive choices, you won't learn shit.
Boobs, everyone. What about boobs?
@18 @20 you both said women haven't been able to choose mates till recently.

Uh, wrong. In evolutionary terms, last 10k years since agriculture, true, women have been subjugated.

But homo sapiens 10k to 100k years ago, before agriculture, and 100k to 1m+ years ago of homo genus ancestors - hunter gatherers. We can only speculate but contemporary hunter gatherers often have pretty egalitarian structures -- some fight wars a lot, some are at peace, but by and large women do get to choose mates. Some also have affairs - albeit from a fairly limited pool of potential mates - but having a nice dick could easily lead to getting chosen more often and thus, more descendants and the gene for nice dick spreading.

Plus, hunter gatherers don't wear as many clothes in warm climates, so plenty of chances for women to check out dick size before picking a partner (or an "extra" partner). In fact, easier than today!
@41 don't confusing picking a mate w/ picking a partner for a quickie on the side. In mammals and birds that are socially monogamous, the "dad" is often not the genetic father. True for humans too! Evolution will select for traits that lead to the most surviving offspring...
Those supposedly women’s choice and evolutionary process have been blown way out of proportions. If the same goes to generic men’s choices then one can assume there were no small breasted women by now. (ctmcmull @ 42 also said it)
As for evolution quick turnaround Jewish boys would be born pre-circumcised by now, and in only 50 years babies born to generations of inbreeding republicans will have no brains.

Delta, even people who have spent their entire lives studying hunters and gatherers (100s of thousands of years of people all around the globe btw, not one homogenous culture) don't have the slightest idea what mating or marriage rituals or norms were like. Any guess at all is pure speculation. Any guess that tries to draw parallels between our own norms and sexual fetishes (here, in the safety of our homes, with internet full of free porn, with our bellies full, with antibiotics, with childhood mortality lower than ever, with long lifetimes, with centuries worth of written knowledge on all subjects at our fingertips) with theirs isn't just speculation, it's also totally unimaginative drivel.
If we could control evolution quickly and by the whims of our sexual desires, surely most men would be able to autofellate?
Also it's not like there aren't traditional societies, even hunter/gatherer societies, still in existence, and plenty that were studied in depth by Westerners in recent centuries, and turns out their mating practices and the features they value are as richly varied as any imaginative person would expect. It's just absurd to me that there are so many people who think "because a majority of people in my particular time/place/culture appear to feel this way about X, therefore this must be a natural tendency of my entire species throughout time and therefore there must be a genetic correlation" or what the fuck ever. It's reductive, and it's a super trendy thing to do right now. Couple that with the currently trendy economic understanding of dating as being of alphas competing for a certain number of women that in turn control all the horny betas by keeping sex scarce (or something, plus cucks as delta points out- probably cave women married small dick guys but got pregnant with the big dicks and made the small dick guys raise their children or something, and let's not forget that for centuries women who have been dropping dead in childbirth or controlled by their fathers and husbands were probably spending their spare time - when they weren't nursing, cooking, cleaning and serving their men- out hunting for big cocks, which produced offspring that their husbands unwittingly raised, despite the risk of danger to their lives if they were caught and the danger to their lives by getting pregnant again, because that's the power that big dicks have over women), and that's how you get the theory that choosy women select for big dicks because of healthy blood flow or something.

@46 Sarah Blaffer Hrdy is one of many who have some pretty good ideas about pre-history by looking at primates and cross culturally

"100s of thousands of years of people all around the globe btw, not one homogenous culture"

you're right many diverse cultures, but wrong, people have not been all around the globe for 100s of thousands of years - homo erectus got pretty far but only homo sapiens went global, and pretty recently, until 100k yrs ago give or take, our species was mostly in Africa only
@48 EmmaLiz check your enthnocentrism! cucks? alphas? betas?

Read some anthro. Partible paternity is pretty common. The way we mate and date today is the exception, which is my point.
OMG delta. The red pill language was in reference to earlier parts of this thread. And as I pointed out, the ways in which humans have organized themselves (their mating, their families, their reproduction) are as vastly diverse as the number of people and centuries themselves. There are all sorts of ways to organize kinship and parentage. What I'm objecting to here is the claim that there has ever been either a) enough consideration of dick size as important in these situations for it to have any effect on the evolution of the species , b) that even if dick size were important, that there would be any consensus on which is better, small or large, as even in recorded history small dicks were the preference for centuries, and c) that women themselves ever had enough agency across history and around the world that their specific sexual preferences for a particular type of dick would be a deciding factor in natural selection.

Taken one by one, each of these assumptions is ridiculous. Taken altogether, they are amusingly absurd to the point that this is the most hysterical conversation I've ever had on SLOG.

And, yet again, let me be pedantic. The fact that fatherhood and motherhood have both been arranged in a variety of ways throughout the rich diversity of humanity across the planet doesn't mean that you or anyone else can do anything other than wildly speculate about what prehistoric humans were like. So if you realize this, and realize that the way we date today is an exception, then why in god's name you think women's sexual preferences today would be relevant for thousands of years all around the globe is beyond me.

Also, as freeing and fantastic as societies in which several men share mates might seem to us now, in real life (see parts of India for example where brothers share wives due to the gender ratio) it usually is less about the woman choosing partners and more about the scarcity of women forcing men into arrangements in which they share women. And in traditional societies, at least in the 20th century, it was often much more about women- who were already mothers- needing the resources and protection of men and using sex to get it. I don't need to read some anthro as I worked for years in public health and saw a lot of this first hand among refugee populations. Usually it starts with the provider men having access to the daughters in the household. But yes, you are correct, that they see several people in father roles and also who knows what this was like before industrialization and civilization, etc. Not me. But I guarantee you , especially in societies without medicine and safe childbirth, it was never so simplistic aa women sitting around choosing dicks that were big enough to give her sexual pleasure- at least not on a grand enough scale to have any effect on evolution.
Also Delta, if you didn't get that the Red Pill language was heavily tongue-in-cheek, then I bet nothing I wrote made any sense.
oh excuse my lack of precision in typing. I should have said "over 100K years:" or "tens of thousnads of years" or whatever you like. Are we going to be that nitpicky? The point is that in talking about current women's preferences for dick size, we are literally speaking in decades. In one lifetime rather than all of humanity, the vast majority of which has left no record.
I'm amused by the comment about only the first few inches of the vagina having sensation. That's like saying it's the head of the penis that has all of the sensation and we should ignore the shaft. I can't explain the vagina-havers who "forget" a tampon except maybe they've just gotten super distracted by something else in their life? I can feel it in me but it's not bothersome so it's easy to ignore.
Genetics PhD myself. I disagree with your point 1:
"1. I think you could've been clearer that homosexual preference doesn't have any influence at all on the evolution of the penis size. Since homosexual couples have no offspring."

It's been years since I saw the calculations so I hope you don't want a reference, but basically, if by your existence, the children in your family are more likely to survive they carry your genes into the next generation even though you didn't have children yourself. This would be an argument for how gay genes are preserved as you get an additional adult who can help the tribe survive even though he doesn't have children himself.
One recent estimate of passage of mitochondria (via mom only) vs Y chromosomes claimed that, since splitting from chimps, 80% of females left progeny, while only 40% of males did. So evolutionary pressures would have been much stronger on men than women. Conversely, there's a good chance that dick size is related to clit size, and some studies claim a larger clitted woman is more easily orgasmic, so selection for bigger dicks could be a side effect of selection for women more enthusiastic about sex who left more kids as a result. Or in other words,we have no clue, lots potentially to be studied.
@57 Yes!

Humans vary so much in their preferences and anatomy. And then there's the different functions to consider: reproduction, social signaling, sex toy. What can ever be determined? Some people don't like sex at all, the rest run the gamut from size queen to penisphobe. For me, personally, a larger than average penis has some benefits as a sex toy, but is far from necessary for satisfying sex or intimacy. Further, if such a penis were attached to a bad lover, it could become a painful liability.
Just checked out Dick Code and am trying to imagine a guy nestling a Coke can alongside his penis as a measuring tool. Wouldn't the cold make you lose your erection? Brrr.
I feel compelled to point out, whenever presented with a social biology explanation, that humans do not *consciously* make decisions based on evolutionary influences. No one, at least that I have ever heard of, says to themselves, I want a mate with high testosterone so I will select large hairy men to father my offspring. Or anything like that. It is all subconscious and not subject to rational intentional thought. I have no idea how evolutionary pressure affects dick size. But I am certain it has nothing to do with females thinking, oh, I'll pick the one with the bigger dick, mich less that process happening repeatedly over generations.
My theory? Human penises are built to allow men to piss higher, I.e. Get that mark on the tree way up there so other animals will think he is a very big animal. Possibly also related to thumbs, hands that can grip, and erect posture. Might be BS but it's at least as good a theory as this female preference idea.
My preferences? Medium size for PIV, smaller (bite size) for oral, long and skinny for anal. Does it matter? Don't know....have had lots of sex in my life but I have only one offspring and that was not a result of a preferred dick size. Based on my experience, I could postulate that we are now selecting for dicks that overwhelm birth control, in my case knock a diaphragm out of position. Perhaps in a few generations dicks will evolve that can yank an iud out. I doubt any woman would prefer that but those dicks might still cause more pregnancies.
To:dr it is extremely unlikely that female preference for larger penises (which may not exist) has anything to do with penis size in our current crop of humans. And, most evolutionary biology explanations of behavior, as applied to individuals, are bullshit.
Although other attributes, like height, muscle mass, and bilateral symmetry, among many others would influence mating preferences, it's not out of the question that penis size was also a factor.

Some comments suggest that this isn't true because of sexual practices over the past thousands of years, but these evolutionary preferences would have been selected for over on a scale of millions of years. Conversely, research suggests that the height of people in the Netherlands increased rapidly, within recent decades due the preference for tall mates, which suggests that women's preferences even in modern times can effect the human population.

In any event, as was pointed out above, human men have penises and testicles that are relatively large compared to other primates, so arguably that dimension of natural selection occurred, even if, as with heights, human men come is a wide range of measurements.

A simple personal preference: I prefer a big girth on the short side - thus due smaller than average vagina length and not like my cervix being bruised (took me a while to work out what was happening there...). But I never choose a sexual partner based on penis size - hasn't every woman been disappointed by the amatory skills of a man with a beautiful dick??? And when I meet a man on the small side, we can both rejoice that anal' much more likely to be on the table ;). There's two sides to everything...
Sorry for the typos!! Hope you know what I mean :o
@33 they can indeed be both. We have the technology. Not saying it's cheap, but it exists.
@34 I do. Perhaps you are incredibly gifted, unlike all other vagina owners. But yeah, not much sensation up there. Ask around, you are going to be pretty upset to hear how many have lost tampons, condoms, etc apparently. For days, weeks, however long it takes for the smell to alert them. Ask your gyno if you have no female friends.
@36 Ha! Imagine the grad student building up the sample size on that particular study.
@32 I think that's why the men seem to all upset about it now - it's a new thing to have to worry about, culturally. They didn't used to be able to get rejected for anything physical.
@33 wouldn't they both have kids? Drive for big whatever still passed down, even if you don't get lust for big cock and having big cock in one individual offspring.
@43 that presumes we've done a lot of evolving since hunter gatherer. Not sure that's the case. Pre-culture you'd imagine more of a free for all ala chimps/bonobos. Which is the case they make in Sex at Dawn, the Evo psych book Dan likes. If you're fucking every guy in the tribe (and why not? Concept of paternity pretty new and not necc extant at hunter gatherer level), preference washes out.
Don't you think technique or payment (prostitution is the first thing monkeys learn when taught what money is) is greater advantage than big dick, no?
@39 I didn't understand this until I saw a dildo bj contest by bunch of randomly selected straight dudes - holy hell. They had no trouble, took em effortlessly, so much more jaw and throat room than we've got. Astonishing.
@44 the birds have markedly less lethal partners.
@48 - right which is why if we're looking at universal Evo shit we gotta look pre-culture. I mean, what has evolved post culture? The pale skin shorter extremities are largely neanderthal, right?
@41 the waist hip ratio is cross-cultural/human universal. If dick size pref is too I'm perfectly happy saying it's evolved/genetic but since no work I can find has been done in even a single study that actually tests it properly we can't say that it is.
LW, post doc aka w full journal access, you find any studies that show clear pref by women for big dicks? You looked, right?
@54 perhaps you are unusually sensitive. Again, ask around. Vagina past the first couple inches definitely less sensitive than inside of your mouth, as an example, no? No need for it to be sensitive, completely useless and actually kind of a problem, especially if one is into giant cock - you'd need to be rather insensitive to handle that, considering. Plus, baby escape route. Ouch.
@45 that presumes men are selective at all! And.... Nope.
@47 - but then they would be less likely to reproduce, no? Just exhausted all the time?
@54 I myself would never have lost a tampon cause they are scratchy, but a cup? And most women, like yourself, apparently don't find tampons scratchy, so probably I'm more sensitive than you are and yes, things are damn dull up there. It's like comparing nipple to between the breasts, not head to shaft. You can get a guy off just working shaft. Seriously doubt if you stimmed only deep vagina you'd get many people off at all, and then only those who were lucky enough to have crosswired themselves. I can get off from being tit fucked wo any nipple or clit stim, but that took training, same way you can get any part of your body to become orgasmic post paraplegia, as an example. (I am not paraplegic, just an example. Anyone can do it.)
@54 and the reason why it's dull is bc your clit isnt anywhere near it internally. Its about as sensitive as any other part of your body at best and actually a lot less so. You try the discern two discrete points test on it and I'm pretty sure you're talking mid-back level of sensitivity if that. It's supposed to be insensitive, it's got one job to do and that's get pummeled (evolutionarily I'd bet it's get pummeled wo any control on your part, and more often than you'd probably like).
@54 think about it this way - have you ever injured it? Is it possible to? What would it take? Compare to rest of body.
@60 ah, but dicklength negatively impacts force of stream. Ask a woman to show you how far she can piss. Other than that I 100% approve of where you're going w this.
@61 citation?
yes, there is no evo advantage in having a sensitive vagina, especially far up in it. childbirth would be even more of a pain-fest than it is for us, if that area were nervy. and the people most interested in penis size are men, and i have no reason that's ever been any different among us than it is now. the whole idea that throughout history we've selected for it, is laughable. please.
*no reason to believe
While Emma Liz usually likes them long and elaborate, no seems to be into plenty of short quickies.
@82/no: It's called Google, and if you have enough time to bang out 50 comments, you have enough time to find the following yourself:

Stulp, G., Barrett, L., Tropf, F.C. & Mills, M. (2015). Does natural selection favour taller stature among the tallest people on earth? Proceedings of the Royal Society B 282: 20150211
Sure, some women prefer small dicks, just like some men prefer fat chicks. Just don't hold your breath while waiting for one of them. From a fat chick.
Just scanning down the comments, I realized:

Wow. Penises and "the spectrum" really do go together.
@1: " It's almost a cliche that once their biological clock starts its proverbial ticking, women stop dating fuck boys and ultimately settle down with a nice, loyal, stable "beta male" to raise a family."

You're a sad and lonely loser, Doctor Reddit MD.
@83 hilariously, the studies that I did find out there were clearly directed by men, bc they we're looking at the wrong metric - length instead of width. There's some correlation between the two but honestly - who out there prefers a long skinny dick over an average length thick one for vaginal sex? Why is length the most important dimension to men when it's the least important to vagina havers?
For those potentially distressed about cock thickness now, technique more than adequately addresses it, or technology if you're so inclined but not necc. Advantage to cocks w a bend in them too for same reason.
@85 it's the caffeine.
@86 the time but not the attention span!
@86 and for some reason, studies on dicks are far more interesting than those on height, why would I be googling those? And yet I wouldn't be pissy if someone wanted a citation for anything I'd mentioned. Are you so nice to all the girls?
@87 sure, interestingly you're more likely to find them in a conservative religious area as well as the giant dick preferers, higher incidence of vaginismus in those communities.

That said, has anyone ever actually measured a partners dick?

And anyone try my draw a dick and ask around test? You'll make new friends. Also educational just from a personal perspective. Plus we're all doodling genitals all the time anyway right?
Basically anything over 6" is vanishingly rare, you are going to need to be in the high upper digits of partners to have likely encountered.

See citation I promised earlier: "Am I Normal? A systemic review and construction of nomograms for flaccid and erect penis length and circumference in up to 15,521 men." Veale et al, March 2nd, 2015, Sexual Medicine.

Sorry that's not in proper format but no one's grading me. None of these were self reported size, some were measured flaccid/stretched so I don't think that sample size is the same for the circumference measurements. Most were guys getting penis related medical care (aka impotence and for that reason may trend large) or for some reason I prefer not to think about, military recruits.
@87 the thing I'm interested in is what women mean when they say large or small dicks vs what men mean. Most straight guys have probably never seen another guy's hard cock (I'm guessing here but every straight dude I've asked had claimed total lack of knowledge). So they're going by porn standards. I don't think women are because they see real life dick (this is very much the dichotomy between what women think when they see a day female body naked vs what men think - we're taught to hate ourselves based on an impossible beauty standard, men see other women naked more than straight women do (or at least en flagrante more), and are much less discerning than we are about it, and are much more truly and sincerely positive about our bodies however they look than we were taught to be (thank you guys!). But unless you've measured a guys dick with a measuring tape, how do you know what "big" means?
@97 fat female body not day female body, sheesh. And of course if you want to do truly good things for your self esteem, date an experienced lesbian! (On average I'm betting they've seen and appreciated a lot more naked ladies than mere straight dudes).
@90 or an average length average girth one or an average girth short one? Who is out there looking only for length??? I mean I get it for anal but vaginal? The end of your vagina is a blind pouch that balloons out in length and width when aroused, I don't even know if you can clamp it down, not enough ennervation/sensation up there for me to even tell.
People who measure it are missing the point.