For example, if you're homely, would being good looking change who you are, or vice versa?
Would your life be that much different had you been born with a different face?
Of course it would.
How you look affects how people treat you, which affects your attitude, which is part of your personality.
Being ugly is like having a tiny dick. It affects your relationships, self-image, and social status.d
If you are of average looks, if you could wake up tomorrow morning and be incredibly handsome, how would your life be different?
If you are handsome, if you woke up tomorrow and were average or homely, how would you change?
NY Mag had an article a few years ago about people who'd had gastric bypass. It was really interesting to hear how the change in their appearance affected their personalities and relationships:
If you look a little different as a child or if you're a different race or ethnicity than the dominant group amongst whom you live, you can internatlize the negative name calling and attitudes expressed by the larger group.
You could be good looking, but because of the taunting or mocking of how you appear, your personality would be affected for the worse. Introversion and anxiety are two such possibilities.
Lisa Marie Sohr, the woman in the [italic]New York[/italic] profile, killed herself in September 2010.
from the comments section of r4's article link:
She didn't commit suicide. I & everyone who knew her feel this is an incorrect judgement. As her Mom I knew her better than anyone. She loved life & actively participated in it right up to making plans to go out the next morning & was out all day doing things & talking to people. It had nothing to do with weight loss. She had surgery 5 yrs ago! It was a tragic accident. She had been worrying about intruders and had been keeping a gun near her in case someone went afte her car as other cars had been broken into on the block. That night 2 cars were stolen near her home. She had a foot injury, a hand injury and was on pain meds, and house lights were out. One of her 4 cats must have tripped her in the dark when she went to investigate a noise. She did not have the gun in her hand, it was under her. I found her. An ex-cop would also not shoot themselves in the stomach. Finally, there was no note, and she believed suicide was stupid as you could always change your life and make it better. People who knew her will all tell you "No Way!"
I don't know if Sohr committed suicide or not, but I lost a whole bunch of weight in my 20s and it did cause an ugly backlash among my former women friends. But looking back, I am not sure if it was because I lost weight and looked better, or because they were frenemies to begin with.
As for what R5 said -- I agree that looking "different" (better or worse than the norm) hurts those in toxic environment the most. In college, we had a stunning girl who dressed in the height of Paris fashion who made the preppy field hockey gals green with ugliness, and while these girls would often take swipes at my dumpy, unfashionable self, with her they rolled out the howitzers.
And not only was she well-dressed, she was a nice girl. I hope she went far in life after college.
My eyeglass prescription changed recently and I have to wear them constantly. I've noticed that strangers are a lot nicer and people flirt and smile more. I'm average looking and used to get no reaction before, but now every interaction I have is positive. No, they aren't rose colored.
Whoa. I posted the link to the NY Mag article. I had no idea Sohr had died. How sad.
r9, that's interesting because no one talks to me or smiles or flirts or even seems to want to make eye contact when I wear my glasses.
Of COURSE how you look affects your personality. I was a chubby shy kid. I lost the baby fat once I got to college and "blossomed." This caused me to come out of my shell with both barrels and I became "the life of the party." People started telling me I was handsome. Well, not everyone LIKES the life of the party and I had to deal with the reality of being vulnerable while in the public eye. Of people disliking me for a plethora of reasons, some of them hating me for "daring to be confident" or actually liking myself. I discovered that not always do "the good looking people have it easier." That is bullshit.
It was hard. Being thought of as handsome caused me to grow immesurably spiritually and emotionally. Now that I have some years on me, I have come to accept that "the outside world" thinks of me as handsome, attractive, etc. and that I am told I "look like a movie star" but internally? All my life I have struggled with my looks, never ever ever quite believing it. Always insecure about my appearance. Still the shy chubby kid inside who sometimes feels "hideous" and unloveable. I guess that dichotomy is what makes my personality more attractive to people. I would never be arrogant or aloof, thinking I am some hunk. I think how we were as children always stays with us and is a part of us. No matter how we look in life, we carry those early scars.
How is this even a question? Of course looks make a difference in life - they affect career prospects, romantic prospects and social standing.
Personally, I was treated much differently when I was of average size with a nice body. People were more willing to help me, be kind, give attention, etc. When I got fat, I became instantly invisible. Having gotten older and more confident, I am able to mitigate the looks issue and am treated well. But my romantic prospects are still less than my heyday of hotness.
For anyone who doesn't think they are especially attractive, work on building your confidence. It is almost as good as being great looking. Self-assurance will take you far. Confidence starts with self-acceptance and self-love. Look into your mirror everyday and tell yourzelf I love you. If you feel funny doing so, that means you need to do it all the more.
The change isn't the problem. Bad adjustment is.
When there's change we have to adjust mentally. Our insecure selves get carried away from all the new benefits the change brings with it and being on this high level of euphoria we stumble and fall. Fall hard, crash, and burn, because we didn't give ourselves the time to adjust. Without proper mental adjustment we're like pigs which were slathered with make up. They are still pigs and no supermodels.
As others have said, how you look affects every single thing about your interactions with the outside world which informs your personality.
If you change that you wouldn't be you, at all.
We can see this with people who have lost the excess fat or people who have taken up weight lifting and become muscular. Their entire lives change based on the changes in their appearance which in turn influences their personality.
As many of us know, the changes in our bodies as we get out of shape, back into shape, age for the better, age for the worse, etc., can affect how we feel about ourselves, how others perceive us, and therefore can affect our confidence, self-esteem, social well being, which are all parts of our personality.
One would very much assume the same might occur with the theoretical alterations of facial attractiveness you are asking about, OP.
It's fascinating to me how shallow most of the women in that article were, fat or thin. They all seemed to think being skinny meant have a bunch of one night stands, date only men who were extremely good looking, in their view at least, radically change their personal lifestyle. Then they wonder why friends dumped them, and blame it on jealousy over their weight. Could it be their friends have nothing in common with them any more?
One dumped her husband, then blithely goes on to say she walked down the aisle not wanting to marry him, but thought she couldn't do any better. Apparently he didn't change, she did. So why say something that humiliating and hurtful in the newspaper? It's like she thinks nobody's feelings matter but her own.
It sounds like they've lived their entire lives with friends they didn't really like, boyfriends they didn't really like, "because they couldn't do any better," and now they just have to tell all these people they despise them.
It is perception of looks is what changes personality.
The world is full of ugly women who have been told all their life they are beautiful and now have egos out of touch with their actually looks.
r12, I assume you mean that you grew spiritually and emotionally because you could differentiate your inner beauty from your outer beauty? If so, Congratulations!
"The world is full of ugly women who have been told all their life they are beautiful and now have egos out of touch with their actually looks."
Boy is that the truth. I know a woman in her forties, beautiful all her life. Every job interview ended in a job, every date ended with a guy in love with her. She's still in good shape. She drinks too much, and it's starting to show on her face, though with makeup she is still stunning for her age.
She's now living with a guy that let her stay "just for one night." It's a year later, she's not working or looking for work, she's burnt out every friend by staying with them, drinking, refusing to straighten her life out until they had to chuck her out.
She came to stay with me for a while. I was astounded with how much confidence she had - she was friends with every stranger within a day, job offers within a week, although she's not from here and the unemployment rate is extremely high here. A week later, she had burnt everybody out by starting fights and being drunk and obnoxious everywhere. The last I heard, the guy she's staying with has started to beat her. And she has burnt every bridge even with her family, due to her drinking and user behavior.
She really thinks everybody in the whole world is just really nice, and everybody can get job offers just by standing there. Therefore, the people that can't take her behavior are just exceptionally mean, rotten people, unlike the rest of the world who always give her a chance, until they find out what a mess she is and chuck her out. They always find out, but still, who else would get this many chances? All these people are enabling her drinking, but they don't care, they just want to be near her.
American women are world leaders in being over confident.
This is the reason why so many heterosexual American men today, are going for Asian brides in record numbers.
r23 sounds like a real, ignorant fuckwit.
Of course it does. Not as much for the reason that you suppose OP. It's not necessarily the person who changes but the society that changes their acceptance of that person. Typical beauties have it easier in many ways that are not obvious to them.
People who fit the guidelines of typical beauty within their own society are treated better by that society in general. They're often seen as "nicer" , "friendlier", "easier to approach" by strangers. They're more often promoted and/or hired when all other qualifiers are equal (and many times when they're not. ) They're more likely to draw people into a conversation - i.e. able to make friends easier than non-typical people.
I have a beautiful friend- the kind that should be a model and has been approached and asked to be one by people in the industry - type. She is also very smart and friendly. Metaphorically speaking- doors open for her from a distance where others would have to push their way through. She could push too but she just doesn't need too. Life has been easier in many ways that most people wouldn't think about.
That being said, if she were a total bitch and unlikeable she'd be just like you and me. the looks might open doors, but the brains and personality are the thing that get you in and let you stay.
Wow. r23 reminds me that the 'FF' tag doesn't really do anything- at all. And People pay for this site?
Really, R26, you'd FF THOSE remarks.
It really does.I am a 37 year old portuguese woman, who have been ugly all my life. Crooked nose, beady "sleepy-looking" eyes, lower proeminent lip, fleshy face, moles, it looks like a jigsaw of repugnance, really desgusting. I was always the ugly friend, the unlovable one, the despisable, the useless. About brains i am average. Have a college degree but nothing special - and i do my best. I always felt unsecure and unstable, embarassed with my face... and i developed a incredible self hate towards myself and now that i am aging it turns even worse. The thing is that in the other hand i am very prone to aesthetical contemplation of things around: nature, landscapes, buildings, images, and of course people. And i know how different and inferior i am. I really know that i am not even average, i understand about aesthetics of facial features/balance/harmony and if there is a range of ugly, average, not really beautiful and beautiful, etc, i know that i am even far bellow ugly. And i dont want to be loved for pity. I have to live with the fact that i live inside a face i dont belong to. So yes, it does change your personality.
A pretty or average girl will grow confidence and be stronger. She will be loved. And not always only for her looks. She feels better inside herself. The loss of job, aging and loss of hope increases with ugliness.
I know i could make a little improvement with plastic surgery, but to make things worse, i dont have money.
Unemployement in long term and lack of money puts a delay to any kind of possible plastic surgery. I am fighting for a job now, but i know that somehow since i am going poor and older the hate for my face is increasing. I cry at the mirror everyday and i cant do anything...and i know this horrible face made me always so unsecure, nervous, depressed and fragile. I feel like cutting my face off or blowing it out and end this crappy life. My face destroyed my personality.
This may not be believable, but I was very good looking when I was young, very. I didn't think so. Now that I'm old and grotesque and see the pictures, OMG, I realize I would definitely been a total jerk had I recognized it at the time.
Looks are extremely important in how we see ourselves and how others see us. Would that it weren't so true but it is. So of course it impacts our personalities. Our personalities - self-esteem, self-regard, how we take care of ourselves and present ourselves - also impact our looks.
I am female, and was a fat kid with bad teeth and a frizzy mop of hair. I was teased about my looks, and never had any dates. I developed a good sense of humor, so I managed to befriend some of the popular pretty girls. I got braces in high school. I lost 15 pounds in college, and boys were interested in me for the first time in my life. I started to see a connection between my weight and attractiveness, so I basically started eating 800 calories a day. I lost another 15 pounds. I started dating professional athletes and musicians, male and female. Everyone kissed my ass, and stared at me everywhere I went. It was a feeling of power that I had never known before, and I became drunk off it. I no longer needed to be nice or funny. People wanted to be my friend because they wanted to meet the athletes and musicians that I knew. No one really liked me, but I was never alone. I ended up getting treatment for an eating disorder, and gained back some of the weight. At 130 pounds (5'6) and 28 years old, I could no longer get the attention that I once had. It didn't bother me that much at first, but as I get older (I am now 40) it really hurts that I am basically invisible. Oddly enough, my personality never came back. People who I knew as a young adult tell me that I was the funniest person they ever met, and I don't know why that went away permanently.
I was treated as someone who invisible until I started lifting weights and got a good haircut and fixed my skin. Then I was given "demigod" status. Guys/women would give me their numbers all the time, I got so much stuff for free without even asking or expecting anything, I got preferential treatment in school (but some teachers hated me), I made "friends" so easily and always had something to do every weekend, even every weekday if I wanted.
But there are scary parts, too. Like being stalked. Also, people will start talking about you a lot...rumors, gossip. There will be some people who will be gunning for you, too.
I gained like 30 pounds and had hair problems due to a medication and it would surprise you how shitty I'm treated, while I think my personality has remained basically the same. Whereas I've always been pretty quiet and reserved, before it was "mysterious" and "detached' but now it's "weird" and "suspicious." It's very funny that the only people that give me the benefit of the doubt or treat me with respect are attractive people, while overweight and non-classically attractive people tend to treat me the worst. I used to be able to tell lame jokes and everyone would erupt in laughter. Now people just don't react or give me a dirty look.
When I get my looks back, I'm totally taking total advantage of the benefits.
This thread makes me sad. But it confirms 2 suspicions:
unattractive women pay a bigger price for it than unattractive men, even gay men (and I'm a very average looking gay guy)
good looks ARE like growing up rich or talented. You've won a kind of lottery, and it provides a certain ease and confidence that allows you to be kind, generous, and not a cutthroat. LIfe is sweeter.
We cherish the myth that unattractive people are kinder, more sensitive, and more worthwhile. But I just don't know that that is true.
I have a sneaking suspicion that water is wet. Time to go test this theory but not sure I am ready for what I may find out...
Yes, I often imagine being very good looking and finding the world to be a different place.
R28, do you have access to a therapist? It pains me to read of your struggles.
Ugly Duckling here ... like R32 I took up body building (put on 20 lbs of muscle), went on Accutane, got contact lenses, got my braces off, started buying fashionable clothes, etc.
I am treated VERY differently now. It's odd because I'm still the shy, nice person I was when I was ugly. In fact, people expect me to be some macho jerk and they're surprised when they see that I'm soft spoken and introverted.
As R32 mentioned, not all of the attention is good. You get gossiped about way more when you're considered somewhat attractive. Also, I've had a few female coworkers fall for me, and they get nasty when I rebuff them. People also expect you to be the center of attention all the time.
The really interesting thing is when women are gorgeous in their youth, and keep the overinflated ego even after they become obese and lose their looks. It is weird that they can't see what other people see, because they have been told that they were beautiful since the day they were born.
I was much more open and attracted more friends when I was younger. Now I'm older with less hair and more weight and I've become invisible. But I deal with it.
[quote] At 130 pounds (5'6) and 28 years old, I could no longer get the attention that I once had.
I imagine that is all in your head. 130lbs at 5'6" is perfect.
130 pounds does not get athletes, r40. A Rod told me that I got fat.
A Rod's a dickhead, r41. I'd buy you a drink.
Thanks for the link, R4. Amazing article.
looking good enough to get laid is all i want, and i do look good enough. for now, anyway.
beauty is detrimental to character, every single time.
ugliness is beauty, if only shallow fools could see the golden heart within.
Why was I born with a different face?
Why am I not like this envious race?
if a woman other women treat you like shit if threatened by the good looks. it's a life long problem.
ITA @ R17. The woman in that article who later offed herself was insufferable. Such an asshole to put down her ex like that, and have the audacity to say she had no female friends because women were jealous of her. Bitch please, far prettier women than you have plenty of female friends. The problem is not with everyone else, it's with YOU.
Something was definitely off about her. And I was suspicious of the sudden romance and marriage to that Israeli man. It's not a good sign when you meet a foreigner on vacation and they want to move in with you a week later. Green card?? He eventually dumped her too, like all her "jealous" friends. That's probably why she killed herself. She finally realized how much of a loser she was---fat or thin,
I've always been tall and strikingly handsome with my straight white teeth and sparkling green eyes. I don't know how you fuglies make it through this world.