I was writing a story today in which a character wonders if a boy she likes would notice her if she wore fake tan. They're Scottish, so this is not a far-fetched scenario. And once for Hallowe'en, I went the whole hog on the fake-tan, fake-eyelashes look, and to my shock, Benedict Ambrose thought I looked really great.
This did not come as a surprise to my beautician, who covers women with fake tan, wax, shellac, etc., for a living, but my mind continued to boggle. It occurs to me that it might be nice to do the fake-tan, fake-eyelashes thing again although I can't help thinking that would also be rather odd.
I am reminded of an episode of Married with Children (a risqué 1980s sitcom) in which the mother and daughter reminisce about the time the daughter came home crying because the boy she liked only liked blondes, and so her mother bought her her first bottle of bleach. From the canned laughter, I learned that this was a disgracefully unmaternal thing to do, but now that I think about it, I wonder if that would work.
Why do so many women dye their hair blonde anyway? The expense of keeping the roots blonde must be immense.
Although on a basic level, men-in-general find women-in-general attractive, there is no use denying that not all men find all women attractive, and that a lot of men find the same women attractive, which is incredibly annoying for the women who are found attractive only by a few. However, if you find few men attractive, why should many of them find you attractive, eh? Anyway, there's no shoulds about attraction. Either we/they are attracted or we/they aren't. And meanwhile, there's a whole world out there of amusing and interesting things that you could enjoy even if you were literally invisible to the opposite sex.
In my gym-rat days, I picked up a muscle magazine and read with great enjoyment advertisements telling its readers that women were more interested in men with muscles than with money. A guy with a pair of muscled up arms--said the ad--was a lot more successful with the ladies than the fat or skinny guy with the fancy car. It was not a subtle ad, but it was not aimed at subtle readers. And the amusing thing is that I do now notice big muscled arms more than anything else, probably because I know so few men with big muscled arms. Incidentally, if you are a big Ed Norton fan, you can find his younger double at my swing-dancing.
No doubt there are men who think it outrageous that some women might notice men with big muscled arms more than ordinary nice guys with skinny or flabby arms, but that's just the way some women are. If I were a man--as I have said many times--I would go to the gym every day--or just buy weights and bring them home--because men can grow muscles with something like a third of the effort women have to put in. It is so EASY for men to get big arms, I wonder why they don't do it more. Possibly they think women should just accept them for the whom they are, or we are not worth the effort of ten minutes of arm-improving a day. Or they have not picked up a muscle magazine and been convinced that women think more of big arms than fancy cars.
I just read an article by a "John Smith" (brave) at "Thought Catalogue" about things a woman can do to be more attractive, and I'm not going to link to it because it is not little brother safe. To leave out the rude stuff, he suggests:
1. Keeping in shape
2. Don't dye, pierce or tattoo where it can be seen.
3. Make your own money
4. Be feminine
5. Be, uh, easy-going.
6. Don't have slept with a lot of guys.
7. Be intelligent.
8. [Single mothers have a harder time finding boyfriends.]
9. Cook at least three times a week..
10. Don't be glued to your Smartphone
11. Don't wear make-up. (Proof that this article was written by a man. They always say it, and they never mean it. They seem to think super-models never wear make-up.)
12. Stop swearing like a sailor.
13. Stop hoarding guy friends because apparently they all want to sleep with you, which I think cannot be true when I think about my own guy friends, who are usually 20 years my junior.
Sadly, the top internet articles about things a man can do to be more attractive to women are pretty brainless and involve slides. Sigh. At "Men's Health" (also not Little Brother Safe) I have found the following advice:
1. Travel about with male friends.
2. Be nice to babies.
3. Grow heavy stubble.
4. Borrow a fancy car. (Ha ha ha!)
5. Walk a dog.
7. Be funny.
8. A survey in Anchorage, Alaska showed that women found men who did hunter-gatherer things, like scaling cliffs, building fires, swimming rivers, more attractive. As well they might--in ALASKA.
10. Smile slowly. Quick grins make you look untrustworthy.
11. Show off your scars.
12. Carry a guitar. (What?)
13. Bring flowers. Apparently men with flowers are more attractive than men without.
14. (Fourteen?) Be strong and lean.
I feel my IQ falling to my socks as I type all this. Fortunately, I have found a much better article on this topic at Thought Catalogue, and it is almost entirely safe for little brothers, so here it is. Naturally we will all roll our eyes at stuff in Item 6, but at least it points out that women also don't like dating people who have slept with a lot of people. And I see--HOORAY--it is about what men look like just as much as advice to women is about what we look like.
Avoid the comments. They are truly depressing, and there's a class of man on the internet which goes bananas whenever a woman gives men advice, for it assumes she's attacking them, personally, with the garden shears.
To return to the title of this blog, I think it is fantastic when men and women accept each other for who they are, no adjustments needed. However, I don't think its a given. I know a poor guy who lost the love of his college life--which left him in a tailspin of depression--because he rarely washed or did his laundry.