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A critical sex difference is in how men and women perceive the looks of the opposite sex. A woman’s beauty is a powerfully visceral stimulant of men’s desire, and tends to remain so until their beauty begins the fade in earnest by the early-mid 30s. Men’s looks, in contrast, provide a more muted stimulation of women’s desire — less visceral and more aesthetic compared to the hungering stimulation female beauty causes men to feel — and this stimulation of female desire tends to manifest in two ways.
1. Women can be drawn to men’s looks upon first sight, just as men are by women’s looks, but unlike men, women can (and will) nearly instantly lose the thrall they feel in the presence of a good-looking man should his behavior and conversation come across as unattractively beta. Betaness can kill the advantage of good looks dead.
The same is *not* the case when the sexes are reversed; that is, a beautiful, bitchy women will still make men feel horny, even as the bitchy attitude discourages men from treating such women kindly.
Maxim #67: When women are confronted by a man with low status behavior that is incongruent with his high status looks, they will never resolve the incongruity to the benefit of his status; women will always resolve the incongruity to the detriment of his looks.
2. Women will gradually perceive a man’s looks getting better over time if he possesses other attractiveness traits (e.g., charm, fame, social savvy) or if the woman in question has fallen in love with him. “Time”, in this context, can be as long as years or as short as a few minutes. A man running tight game *will* be perceived as better looking by women. A man in a relationship who is loved by his girlfriend or wife will also enjoy the benefit of positively altered female perception of his looks.
Again, the same phenomenon does not exist when the sexes are reversed; an ugly woman, no matter how charming, wealthy, famous, kind or personable, will *not* be perceived as better looking by men. A similar dynamic operates within relationships; in fact, a woman in a long term relationship can actually become *less* attractive to her lover as his desire for variety begins to outcompete his feelings of love and loyalty.
There is one caveat: early in a relationship, when the feelings of love are strongest (3 months to 2 years, depending on his basal oxytocin levels), a man will be so infused with a dopamine high that his woman will seem more beautiful to him than when they started
dating fornicating. Although — and this cannot be stressed enough — NEVER will she seem more beautiful than when he FIRST laid eyes on her. That initial blast of lust is impossible to duplicate.
The above observation of the female inclination to perceive a lover’s looks in more favorable terms explains the time-tested wisdom that a woman in love thinks her man better looking than he is. I believe this change in perception is so powerful that it actually reflects a neural rewiring of a woman’s brain circuitry when gazing upon the visage of a man she loves. Similar radical alterations in female perception happen when a woman is pleasantly surprised by a charismatic man who is successfully seducing her despite his unimpressive looks.
I knew a guy in high school who had severe burn scars covering more than half his face. Dated one of the most popular girls in school for a long time and was liked by all the other girls as well. Everyone who knew him said that after knowing him for only a short time, the scars were invisible. They simply became part of who he was and went completely unnoticed. Attitude is everything. Looks may slow down those initial reactions, but if you move beyond that and maintain a confident frame, they will not hinder you much.
A man’s physical flaws are like disappearing ink — exposure to a woman’s love, or even her interest, will cause them to fade away.
And here is some real world experimental evidence that manly confidence influences women’s perceptions.
According to a university study, women can still identify a physically attractive man just by reading his profile.
It found good-looking men were able to convey their confidence and attractiveness in their written self-description – and that women volunteers were able to recognise their beauty without being shown the lonely heart’s accompanying photograph. […]
‘Our data suggests that attractive individuals wrote texts (profiles) that conveyed confidence, and it was perhaps this confidence which primarily signalled quality to the women.’
The associate professor added that ‘such confidence may arise from attractive people’s general sense of their high mate-value’.
Take home lesson: If you’re an ugly man, you can influence women to perceive you as more physically attractive than you are by projecting the confident demeanor of an attractive man. A low status man can influence female perception by projecting the attitude and body language of a high status man. This is the crux of game.