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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am always surprised at how many comments I get on my appearance, some insults, others compliments. I guess it shocks me that people are paying that much attention to the details of my physical self and that they feel the need to tell me. People will blurt out, "you gained weight", "your body looks good", "your skin is breaking out", "your skin is clear", "you look thinner", "your teeth are yellow", "your teeth are white" etc. I guess what really surprises me is that I don't focus on my looks that much...I make sure to be clean and decently attractive, but that's it. I guess if it were a huge preoccupation I could be more attractive, but I enjoy other things than shopping and counting calories. I already feel attractive enough to be happy so I don't understand why others need to 'rate' me or whatever you want to call it. I'm not a model, never wanted to be so why do I feel that there is pressure to be model perfect. Why do women police each other in that department? My boyfriends have always been happy with me, even calling me beautiful, but it seems like other women in particular are the ones who are always sizing me up and are sometimes very harsh critics. Sometimes they will give a compliment one day and an insult the next even if though the conversation I have with them is unrelated to appearance, but somehow they have to find a way to bring it up. I personally want to not be preoccupied with my appearance because I find that to be a very shallow focus for my life. I am always surprised when I discover how much some women, even older women focus on improving their looks, even if they aren't particularly good looking. I want to be attractive, but then that's it...I'm not trying to be the 'best', but for some reason I get the impression that others assume that I am trying, maybe because that's the way they are. But really, the cosmetic industry is way too overfocused on trying to make people feel inadequate in the beauty department...It disturbs me that people fall for this and then spend their whole lives looking at their flaws and looking for others' flaws. Life is short and we all end up in the ground anyway. I'd rather just be happy with myself...But having people constantly making 'comments' doesn't help in that pursuit.
 

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I hate to ask and to intrude, but weren't you an ESTJ in another thread? A very convincing act I must say. Of course I'm not going to judge as everyone needs their creative outlets but it seems interesting and intriguing to see you applying a radically different viewpoint :p

I am questioned incessantly about my appearance, I do not get much criticism about my looks fortunately (because the majority do not care about how attractive a man is) however my dress is always criticised. I spend a lot of time in my own head, to the point on occasion where I am not aware of what I am dressed like, even what colours my clothes are. When I am off in my own head, the attempts I made at looking smartly dressed (due to the judgments of others) fall apart around themselves so when I return to the company of others, I may have scruffy hair, untucked shirt, dirty shoes, shoe laces untied and sometimes completely forgetting to wear a belt. Somehow all of these traits make me a lesser man, less capable of being myself, less capable of doing my job and less welcome in the eyes of others. I regard all of these as mere decoration. I don't criticise such people though, some people do not live in their inner worlds, the outer world is their everything. Maybe they want their opinion to be heard, maybe they want to protect and guide or maybe they just want to be overbearing. But I can't change, dressing smart all the time is entrapment in my eyes.

However in your case, I wouldn't worry about it. I think you are intelligent and talented enough to go far in your life, no matter if people judge you on such petty terms.
 

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I can certainly relate to that. I'm not sure how old you are, but I had the misfortune of being a sort of pretty but definitely geeky 12-year old when a bunch of movies like She's All That were coming out, so I had a bunch of middle school girls saying things like "You'd be so cute if only you'd ____!" I've gotten more confident with time and experience, but I'm still fairly self-conscious about my appearance.
 

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Confidence in oneself inspires fear in one's competitors. That they try to bring you down is a compulsive act. They know not how to get what you have.
 
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I never notice when someone has changed their appearance...It's just not something I look for. I notice other people looking me up and down but if you asked me what my friends were wearing today I couldn't tell you because I really don't care!

I make more of an effort when I go out clubbing. I actually put on makeup and wear contacts. During the day I wear no makeup, glasses and whatever clothes I have that are clean. I've tried to be interested in fashion but I really can't be bothered! I get the occasional compliment from people but it's mostly "you've straightened your hair. It looks nice." Or one day I didn't bother to dry my hair with the blow dryer, I just let it dry naturally and it gets really curly and I had a couple of compliments and my reaction was "oh this happens when I can't be bothered to do anything with it".
 

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I personally want to not be preoccupied with my appearance because I find that to be a very shallow focus for my life. I am always surprised when I discover how much some women, even older women focus on improving their looks, even if they aren't particularly good looking.
Umm... okay... isn't this statement a little hypocritical?

Anyway, if these women "aren't particularly good looking", then I don't see any problem with them wanting to look better. Like you, they may not want to endure the harshness of critics, so this is their way of dealing with it.

I actually do not have a problem with people wanting to look good as long as it doesn't interfere with their own lives and the lives of others, or unless they're measuring their self-worth with appearance (which is probably worse).

If a person wants to resort to cosmetic surgery, then that's their choice. If they're dissatisfied with how their nose is or whatever part of their bodies, then it's completely up to them. In the end, if they feel more confident and are willing to pay the monetary (and perhaps social) price to deal with a lack of self-esteem then they can go right ahead with it.



I want to be attractive, but then that's it...I'm not trying to be the 'best', but for some reason I get the impression that others assume that I am trying, maybe because that's the way they are.
Yes, you want to look attractive, but so do others. The difference is what you're going to actually do about satisfying such a "want". Some may put more effort, some may put less. The amount of effort put in will appear different in the eyes of beholder (eg. one person may spend lots of time exercising, but another may invest in a lot of make up). In the end, lots of people, if not the majority, still have this desire to be attractive.

The judgement you faced was unwarranted, but I feel as though you have also judged others (based on what you said concerning height in another thread... something I'll ignore for the time being).

*Shrug* The post here seems like the total opposite of what was happening in the other thread... I've got a mixed reaction towards this entire thread.
 

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I don't spend money on my look, except for the expenses required for standard showering (water, heat, shampoo etc). I do however care much about my look. I've never been told I looked good except from people related to me.. And people I've later slept with...which is two. They found me gorgeous for some reason.

I guess it's not custom to comment on the look of a guy, but the comments I get are regarding my long hair or how thin I am (apparently I'm borderline underweight).

I can spend a lot of time looking in the mirror; I find myself ugly and I like to look close at all the ugly details of my face and body so I can re-establish my bad opinion of my looks so I won't fool myself into thinking that I look good and disappoint myself later.

Looks means a lot to me, but my judgement of another person's appearance is based on the person's personality. Beyonce, Britney Spears, Lady Gaga etc.; they're considered beautiful but I find them ugly. What I find beautiful is warmth and kindness and that shows through a person's smile and eyes.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Reasons why somebody would insult directly to somebody's face, that I can think of:

1. An attempt to cause shame, assert oneself as dominant (overbearing as ectoplasm put it)
2. Projection of insecurities by somebody who feels physically flawed
3. Denigrate the competition like shorttail wrote and cause psychological harm
4. A kind desire to help somebody improve
5. A desire to be 'truthful' and real to somebody, instead of polite
6. A maintaining of the value that women need to be as pretty as possible/like a duty

* Compliments are more complicated in that sometimes they can make us feel good and other times can make us feel that we are being scrutinized, judged and it is only a matter of time before the judger finds a flaw.
 

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I don't take issue with genuine compliments. Sometimes they can embarrass me, but ultimately they make me feel good. I think it's nice when people choose to focus on the positive in others & to express it; I wish I was better at doing so myself.

I don't like ambiguous comments about my appearance though (ie. "you're so skinny" - uh huh, and?). I find them to be sort of thinly veiled insults, geared at getting a reaction out of you without having to take responsibility for being insulting.

The main thing I've had people nitpick me over (usually my mom or grandma) is my skin; it's like they think I don't have a mirror. "Your face is broken out" - oh really? Thanks, it's not like I didn't notice this morning when I washed my face & put makeup on... I have had men point stuff out also (one told me I needed to get my hair trimmed), but it's often some ploy to lower your self-esteem, so you'll date them (one of those nasty PUA tricks - doesn't work on me).

Most of the time, people are acutely aware of their "flaws" and don't need anyone to point them out. The only time I really appreciate it is if I have food on my face or something; okay, go ahead & tell me then :laughing: .

I don't think that appreciating beauty or wanting to be attractive are shallow in themselves, but only when given undue importance, or when you have such a narrow standard for beauty/attractive that you are overly critical of others. I think it's a matter of keeping things in perspective.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
I don't take issue with genuine compliments. Sometimes they can embarrass me, but ultimately they make me feel good. I think it's nice when people choose to focus on the positive in others & to express it; I wish I was better at doing so myself.

I don't like ambiguous comments about my appearance though (ie. "you're so skinny" - uh huh, and?). I find them to be sort of thinly veiled insults, geared at getting a reaction out of you without having to take responsibility for being insulting.

The main thing I've had people nitpick me over (usually my mom or grandma) is my skin; it's like they think I don't have a mirror. "Your face is broken out" - oh really? Thanks, it's not like I didn't notice this morning when I washed my face & put makeup on... I have had men point stuff out also (one told me I needed to get my hair trimmed), but it's often some ploy to lower your self-esteem, so you'll date them (one of those nasty PUA tricks - doesn't work on me).

Most of the time, people are acutely aware of their "flaws" and don't need anyone to point them out. The only time I really appreciate it is if I have food on my face or something; okay, go ahead & tell me then :laughing: .

I don't think that appreciating beauty or wanting to be attractive are shallow in themselves, but only when given undue importance, or when you have such a narrow standard for beauty/attractive that you are overly critical of others. I think it's a matter of keeping things in perspective.
What I think is really interesting about your post is that the two types of people who have nitpicked your appearance have been women older than you and men. This is why I think that many of these comments aimed at younger women have a 'controlling' tone to them, a way to shame (like you said, lower your self esteem) so that you will know your place, that you are less then they are.

I think older women sometimes put younger women down in the exact same way that men have traditionally put women down. I've heard older women complain that their husbands insult their looks and then they'll turn around and do the same to a younger woman. Hypocritical much? Many times the older women who have given me their opinions on my looks aren't even attractive anymore, but then they'll say, "well, I'm just old." So I guess they think being old makes it okay to nitpick a younger women while they are safe from all criticism because they are old. These women come from a time when being pretty was a ticket to landing a good husband and a decent life so maybe they are just trying to be helpful, but I don't think it is always so innocent.

Compliments make me feel good too, but when given by older women and men there can sometimes be a condescending tone, like "good job, I approve of you" when this rubs me the wrong way because I don't need approval. By being the ones who give or don't give approval they are in a position of power. These are the ones looking me up and down with straight faces making sure I fit the mold and look 'pretty'. I can see why the hippies of the 60s rejected all the expectations placed on the them and just went without make-up and processed hair. I think they just wanted to be free from the pressure of conformity and control.
 

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I think it can happen with any age/gender, really. Kids do it. Trust me.
Today, "Your hair looks pretty!"
Last week, "You have pig ears!" ( I don't even know what that means...)
:tongue:

Anyway, I think physical appearance is unimportant but I see no problem in appreciating it. Unfortunately people are being judged by it and that is where I see a problem. I think everyone knows that and feels the same way, but it's just human nature to be competitive unfortunately. And some people are just mean and insecure.
 

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In our society (north American) I think that physical appearance is deceptive, and we put wayy too much value on it. I guess I use the term deceptive in that we all (maybe not all of us, but a lot of us, at least I know I do sometimes) seach for beauty mistaking it for happniess. Maybe it's because I feel like we have such a high standard of what looks good, so people put a lot of pressure on themselves to look good, when I suppose they should be making more of an effort to make themselves feel good. I try not to focus on my personal appearance, but then I try not to be a slob. I think appearance has benefits to it, like wearing certain clothes gives us the freedom to express ourselves and make people see us the way we want to. I feel like I've gotten looks like "what are you thiking" and "really" when I walk around in clothing stores (or maybe I'm just hypersensitive) but personally I feel that comfort is more important than looking good. I think that North American standards of beauty are bizarre. To quote Sex and the City, who decided that tall skinny women ar supposed to be the standard for what is beautiful?
 

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i dress nice because i like to dress nice. IRL people don't say much, maybe cause i don't conform in the way i dress. as i said though i like to looknie, i'm jsut saying i base looking nice on what i see in a mirror. Friends i know online compliment me more on my appearence which is nice. i try not to care about what people think of me but of course i'd love a favourable opinion
 
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