Monday, Aug. 19, 2013 | 1:34 p.m.
Two years after the “Fifty Shades of Grey” series first climbed the bestseller lists, the racy fetish novels continue to have an impact on dating culture across the country, according to new data released by dating website seekingarrangement.com.
Research from the site found that in the past year, 263,190 women have signed up for its services seeking a “Fifty Shades”-style BDSM relationship, up 41.5 percent from the previous year’s total of about 186,000 women.
Of the Top 10 U.S. cities who showed the greatest increase in women seeking to turn their “Fifty Shades” fantasies into realities, Las Vegas ranked fifth with a 44.4 percent increase from the previous year. The city came in behind Indianapolis (49.7), Detroit (50.5), San Francisco (95) and Phoenix (96.2).
Seekingarrangement.com helps faciliate “mutually beneficial relationships,” with a particular focus on setting up moneyed “sugar daddies” with interested younger women, known as “sugar babies.”
The site, launched in 2006, attributes an overall spike in membership in recent years to the “Fifty Shades” trend, with 24.8 percent of its active female members looking for a relationship similar to that of the novel’s college-aged heroine Anastasia Steele. The site also credits the past year’s increase in such relationship requests in part to the recent announcement of the “Fifty Shades” movie adaptation release date for 2014.
"Christian Grey represents what women in today's society want in a partner," seekingarrangement.com founder and CEO Brandon Wade said in a statement. "Financial stability, consideration, mutually beneficial and sexual adventure. Which is why many women are surprised to see that our dating website, where they can find their own version of the fictional Mr. Grey, exists."
The list of the Top 10 “Fifty Shades”-inspired cities is as follows:
1. Phoenix: 96.2 percent
2. San Francisco: 95 percent
3. Detroit: 50.5 percent
4. Indianapolis: 49.7 percent
5. Las Vegas: 44.4 percent
6. San Jose, Calif.: 42.3 percent
7. Philadelphia: 42.6 percent
8. Tampa, Fla.: 40 percent
9. San Diego, Calif.: 37 percent
10. Los Angeles: 33.3 percent