Ahh, is there any more sensitive subject than “looks” between men and women? Yes, and I’ve covered them in earlier columns in this series. But, “looks” are a big deal in both directions for different reasons that are inherent to our respective genders!
While I generally used to believe that men are more motivated and influenced by looks, I think things have equalized a bit among current young adults. Nonetheless, there are certain things that are clearly different between men and women and these are true even if you went to Gender Studies in college.
My regular disclaimer for this series is that I am asserting generalizations and for every generalization there is naturally an exception. So, bust my chops if you want, call me a sexist if you must, but understand that men and women are different, no matter how much graduate school you’ve gone to!
So, in no particular order other than alternating between men and women, here are my thoughts on how “looks” are looked at by men and women:
~~ Men are motivated by a woman’s looks – first, second, and third. Perhaps, values and personality enter into consideration after a thorough physical inspection has taken place!
~~ Women care about two things first and foremost in the man they choose – money and humor – humor and money. If, perhaps, the guy shows up for a first date – as a platonic girl-friend told me about recently – with NO TEETH, then perhaps looks will take a higher rank in relationship consideration.
~~ Men like certain “looks”-oriented features in women and it varies as much as men and women vary in looks and everything else. Some men like big or small fill-in-the-blank. Some men like blondes, brunettes, or redheads. Some men go for a particular ethnicity or race. For me, I’ve had a gut attraction to Asian women all my life but, much like the lead man in the great French movie, “The Man Who Loved Women,” I’ve always liked all women when the package worked – whatever the size, color, or shape.
~~ Where looks matter to women tends to be in the height department. Those women who enjoy wearing heels tend to prefer a man that is at least their height (in those stilettos). A few women care about hair on the head. Again, I think money and humor dominate women’s interest in a man and I can’t emphasize that enough.
~~ Men are so shallow that they will obsess about the one physical feature that bugs them about a woman. Everything else can be in place but the man will only see that one annoying feature, however irrelevant it is. What acerbates this problem is when the woman points out that feature. Hello? Can you do anything stupider? I’ve had a woman point out a feature they didn’t like about themselves that I didn’t even notice. The moment they pointed it out, I couldn’t see anything else. Yes, men are shallow.
~~ The short guy can go a long way to compensate for his height by showing up in an exotic car and pulling out a wad of cash. That first gut negative reaction will mitigate some with those two displays for most women. Then, if he’s generous and funny on top of it, the woman will recognize how little height matters when they’re lying down.
~~ Men struggle to not look at that hot woman over in the corner booth. Men know it’s rude and obnoxious, but it is like an addiction for many of us. I’ve found the solution is to seat myself facing the wall. I’ve written about this male phenomenon and it’s complete absurdity. Do we actually think that said “hot woman” across the way is going to come over to us, whisper in our ear, and we’re going to excuse ourselves and meet her in the ladies room for a quickie? Do we really think that is going to happen? Yes, we do.
~~ Women do look at a man’s shoes and, sometimes, his accessories. This judgment is similar to a man’s judgment of a woman’s shape. Both are critical to the likelihood of a second date. When a man wears lousy shoes or, for that matter, dresses like I do (my clothes of choice for a long while were shorts, sandals, and an aloha shirt), he’s in big trouble. He’d better be able to compensate very quickly with a good joke or two (my savior, plus my wife now dresses me for any public outing).
Okay, I’m ready to be skewered. Let me know what I’m missing, in a comment, below…