Tuesday, February 4, 2014

What Really Makes Someone Attractive? (Bulls**t Answers Not Welcome)

In an age of never-ending diets, new, absurd workout programs, ways to freeze the fat (what?!), bronzers, plastic surgery, and vajazzling I ask myself constantly “What is attractive?”

I use the word "attractive" because of course I mean to the opposite sex. No one is waxing and scrubbing and weight-lifting for themselves (okay, maybe a little for health purposes, maybe) but the truth is we all want to look good because we all to be loved, or get laid, or in simple terms … be as attractive as we think we can be.

A recent beauty survey revealed that men and women have very different views about what physically makes a woman beautiful. Guys chose blonde hair and full lips, like my girl Scarlett Johannssan. While women chose dark hair and a strong nose, a la Natalie Portman. The point being, it was totally opposite. So here we are trying to fit in our box of beauty to please the opposite sex, when in reality we’re totally missing the mark.

To take this point further I was recently out with several friends, when the topic of breasts came up (how could it not?). Three girls and two guys. Naturally when girls start talking about their boobs there are a million things that can be wrong with them: size, shape, smell (er, maybe?), buoyancy, color, yadda yadda. 

At this point the men in the conversation, looking flabbergasted with their jaws firmly on the floor shouted out, “No! No! No! All your boobs are fine!” Adding vigorously, “They are BOOBS.” A light went off in my head, flaws we see in ourselves are still sexy as hell to other people. So why do we beat ourselves up about them?

To explore further I asked male friends of mine, what they find attractive in women. I would assume answers with body parts would pretty much take up the list, but alas this was not the case. Instead I received the following:

“The way their necks smell”, “The way they snuggle into you”, “When they wear your boxers”, “Confidence”, "A good sense of humor is mega points", “I like when girls get all giddy in the morning and try to wake you up”, “Their skin is always so soft”, “They smell nice”, “Rocking red lips”, "A girl who can cook", "A girl who's genuinely interested in what I'm doing", "A little quirky","Face, boobs, body. But as soon as a conversation starts to go my attractions change."

None of these attributes really had anything to do with just looks, but instead were qualities rooted in behavior, spirit and that intangible quality that gives two people chemistry and another two people coals. 

Here's what I'm saying:

Looks are not everything. Looks get you in the door, but they don’t give you the key. I know this to be true. I know that sometimes qualities I find attractive have nothing to do with biceps and dreamy blue eyes (although, those are nice too). 

I love the look of a guy cooking breakfast in the morning, the way guys smell like guys, the ability to wear a hoodie well, talking to their moms on the phone, the way they drive with their knees (my legs are too short to do this), the way they take charge when a restaurant gets your order wrong, the way they walk into a room, the way they love your friends (even if they don’t). These are qualities that are hot.

The truth is when you’re attracted to someone, all of them becomes attractive. The good, the bad and the ugly. It’s like a black hole -- you can’t see it, but no doubt, it will consume you.

So it’s about time we ditch the external stuff and focus on what we do well as ourselves. Ever watch someone in a play and suddenly they’re sexier than before? Or a sporting event? Or giving a stellar speech? Or working a room? Someone in their element is fundamentally attractive (why do you think we love talented famous people so much?).

So if we all focused on what we do best and we try to be the best version of ourselves, rather than changing everything to look like someone created on a computer (ehem, photoshop), then maybe we’d all be a little more beautiful.

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