Beauty And What Makes Us Attractive
“Our initial markers of what constitutes beauty are usually external and physical that is based on appearance”
There is so much beauty inside you that your physicality will forever fall short, no matter what efforts you take cosmetically. In fact, when you think about it, it is for this reason that beauty is thought of as being in the eyes of the beholder. Beauty and what is attractive, comprises personality, heart, empathy and a myriad other intangible qualities and it takes a particular beholder to fully appreciate this kind of beauty that emanates from within.
As humans though, we are fallible, prey to a shallow level of attraction. Our initial markers of what constitutes beauty are usually external and physical that is based on appearance. Here too, we are products of both nature as well as culture. Western scientists have done studies to show that a high degree of facial symmetry in a person, is an indicator of attractiveness. Symmetry, here refers to how similar our profiles are laterally, meaning how similar the left of the face is, to the right.
Other cultures find beauty elsewhere – the Chinese, in small feet in their womenfolk, certain African tribes, in elongated necks. These are cultural. However, it is difficult for someone steeped in either of those cultures to determine which standard of beauty came to them naturally and which was ingrained through their culture.
Beauty And Health
As we move beyond beauty to what is considered attractive, it’s found that the healthier a person is, the more attractive he or she is to others. This may stem from our programming of healthier partners leading to healthier offspring – a primordial Darwinian instinct. However, nurture plays a big role here too- it’s been found that the nature and temperament of a person overrides his or her physical beauty, when it comes to their attractiveness ‘ in the eyes of others. The kinder and more lively the personality, the more attractive the person is considered, all other factors being constant.
This tells us clearly that our focus needs to be on improving ourselves in the context of the world. As important as it is to take care of one’s health and to look after one’s appearance to an extent, it is not nearly as important as developing our personalities. As we work towards becoming better people, we are increasing our perceived attractiveness and in every sense of the word, we become more beautiful.