Do I Love You Because You're Beautiful?

Copyright (c) 2017 by Kenny Felder

A pretty girl is like a melody
That haunts you night and day
Just like the strain of a haunting refrain.
~ Irving Berlin

Reviews of Disney's live-action "Beauty and the Beast" remake are mixed, with different reviewers focusing on a wide variety of different issues and aspects. But I'll tell you something that none of them focuses on at all: Emma Watson is beautiful. I don't mean her spunk, her spirit, her compassion, her humor, or her surprisingly clear voice. I mean her hair and her freckles and her eyes. I mean the smooth skin on her neck, and often well below her neck (although not so far as to be risqué of course). I mean the slightly asymmetrical smile that lights up an otherwise perfectly symmetrical face.

The movie states clearly at the beginning, and emphasizes throughout, that "beauty is found within." But I can't help falling in love with that smile. I suspect most viewers, male and female, get that same twinge. Call it ironic or even call it objectification, but I think Emma Watson's superficial visual attractiveness is central to the emotional impact of the movie.

So anyway, I've been thinking about the emotional impact of female beauty. Everyone talks about it all the time, and yet at a certain level no one really talks about it. So here goes.

When I was a little girl, no one ever told me I was pretty. All little girls should be told they're pretty, even if they aren't.
~ Marilyn Monroe

There are situations in our culture in which it is downright rude not to comment on a woman's appearance. "It is my honor to introduce Governor Smith and his lovely wife Jane." Jane Smith might look like a gangrenous musk ox, but she's still his "lovely wife." If she were a virtuoso flautist then she would be the "lovely and talented Jane Smith." I remember, even as kid, finding such pro forma attractiveness-comments puzzling.

I was similarly struck when Facebook happened and I started seeing the remarks that my female students make to each other. A tremendously high percentage of their conversation consists of physical compliments: "You look so beautiful!" "I can't believe how great you look!" "Lookin' good, girl!" Such comments are still frequent, although somewhat less so, between older women. My sense is that I'm getting a glimpse of a social dynamic that has always existed, but that men have historically not gotten to witness.

It's too simple to see all this as being all literally about visual attractiveness. Much of it is expressions of affection, of comfort, of respect. At the same time, it's also too simple to see all this as being entirely metaphorical. Many of the comments are specifically about hair or clothes. The visual and the emotional intertwine in a way that confuses and intrigues me.

Sometimes I think that all (or most) women naturally understand a certain relationship between visual and emotional attractiveness, and no (or few) men get it. Other times I think that most people get it, and I'm the oddball who doesn't. And still other times I suspect that we all have roughly the same feelings deep down, but most people have never tried to investigate or articulate them the way I'm doing in this essay. I'll be very interested to hear what you think.

Hey there, Delilah. What's it like in New York City?
I'm a thousand miles away, but girl,
Tonight you look so pretty. Yes you do.
Times Square can't shine as bright as you.
You know it's true.
~ Tom Higgenson

I suspect many of my readers are familiar with "Hey There Delilah." It's a lovely song. But read the lyrics and think about them for a minute. If Delilah has a sharp wit, appreciates spicy food and medieval poetry, or votes libertarian, the song never mentions it. The song does tell us that she radiates more light than a Manhattan intersection, which we all understand to be metaphorical. But how about the other part: does she literally look pretty this particular evening, or is that metaphorical too? I am honestly not sure. It's quite possible that the question isn't even meaningful.

I learned the truth at seventeen
That love was meant for beauty queens
And high school girls with clear skinned smiles
Who married young and then retired.

The valentines I never knew
The Friday night charades of youth
Were spent on one more beautiful
At seventeen I learned the truth.

And those of us with ravaged faces
Lacking in the social graces
Desperately remained at home
Inventing lovers on the phone
Who called to say "come dance with me"
And murmured vague obscenities.
It isn't all it seems at seventeen.
~ Janis Ian

Janis Ian describes the tremendous problem with conflating romance with beauty: most girls are just not blessed with Emma Watson's face. If every man spends his life looking for a beautiful girl, then a lot of wonderful, intelligent, creative, and loving girls will get left out. It's a life-long sentence for no crime, and with no parole.

The obvious solution is that men—men like the Beast, men like Gaston, men like Shallow Hal, all men—have to learn to look inside for beauty. This is more fair to the girls, if you assume that a cold-hearted girl can become warm-hearted more easily than an ugly girl can become pretty. Beyond that, it also makes sense. A beautiful face has an undeniable short-term attraction and a lot of show-off value, but if you're choosing a companion for life, a genuinely nice person is going to do much more for you.

If you interpret all that to mean "a man should seek companionship based on inner qualities rather than outer" then I think it's 100% true. If you interpret all that to mean "men should simply pay no attention to looks" then I think you're kidding yourself. I don't think any man or woman will ever work that way.

Your beauty is beyond compare
With flaming locks of auburn hair
With ivory skin and eyes of emerald green.
Your smile is like a breath of spring
Your voice is soft like summer rain
And I cannot compete with you
~ Dolly Parton

I'm not being entirely fair when I say that no one really "talks about it." There are two groups that do carefully analyze female beauty: feminists, and evolutionary psychologists. I am by no means an expert on either one, but I am fascinated by both, so I'm going to do my best to summarize the insights they bring to the table. If you are an expert in either one and feel that I have mischaracterized your discipline, let me know and I will do my best to fix it. (Just please keep in mind that I am trying to keep this fair and accurate but concise.)

Feminists argue that a patriarchal culture treats women, not as full beings with inner mental and emotional lives and intrinsic value, but as physical objects for the pleasure of men. That is why we judge men as humans, and women more as works of art. Along with this overarching theme we often hear that…

So where do you go with all that? I think that many feminists want us to judge all humans as humans, which is where the Janis Ian song leads me. They regard any purely visual judgment as objectifying and/or demeaning. Others might allow for some arenas in which a purely visual assessment of a woman is appropriate, but with equal time given to male beauty. (Much of feminism is devoted to achieving symmetry, a topic to which I will return briefly below.)

But evolutionary biology offers a very different—and in some ways contradictory—analysis. Studies show that the tendency to evaluate women more on their appearance, and men more on their abilities and/or status, may be biologically innate. This tendency is remarkably consistent across different cultures, which is not surprising under either lens. What may be more surprising is that the standards of beauty are themselves in many ways consistent. The psychologist Devendra Singh found that observers of all ages, both sexes, and many different cultures share remarkably consistent ideals, such as a waist-to-hip ratio of 0.7 or lower. That ratio, and many other universally "pretty" characteristics, are exactly what you would predict if men were choosing their mates based on genetic predisposition to carry and raise healthy children.

This argument is often mischaracterized. In Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man, Stephen says that the evolutionary argument "leads you into a new gaudy lecture-room where MacCann, with one hand on The Origin of Species and the other hand on the new testament, tells you that you admired the great flanks of Venus because you felt that she would bear you burly offspring and admired her great breasts because you felt that she would give good milk to her children and yours." The actual argument is not based on such unconscious subtleties. A long time ago there were men who—for no reason at all, just random chance—preferred the look of a woman with a certain waist-to-hip ratio a certain kind of hair and many other qualities. Because those qualities are in fact reproductively useful, those men tended to propagate more, so we end up being descended from that sort of men. It's a very different history that does not involve men inventing and imposing arbitrary standards on women, either to beautify or to subjugate them.

I think there is something very real in the feminist critique. (It's hard not to be convinced when you look at the history.) I think there is something very real in the evolutionary explanation. (It's hard not to be convinced when you look at the studies.) But neither one really gets at the experience that I have—that I think we all have—when we see a pretty girl. Let's go back to Portrait of the Artist.

A girl stood before him in midstream, alone and still, gazing out to sea. She seemed like one whom magic had changed into the likeness of a strange and beautiful seabird. Her long slender bare legs were delicate as a crane's and pure save where an emerald trail of seaweed had fashioned itself as a sign upon the flesh. Her thighs, fuller and soft-hued as ivory, were bared almost to the hips, where the white fringes of her drawers were like feathering of soft white down. Her slate-blue skirts were kilted boldly about her waist and dovetailed behind her. Her bosom was as a bird's, soft and slight, slight and soft as the breast of some dark-plumaged dove. But her long fair hair was girlish: and girlish, and touched with the wonder of mortal beauty, her face.

She was alone and still, gazing out to sea; and when she felt his presence and the worship of his eyes her eyes turned to him in quiet sufferance of his gaze, without shame or wantonness. Long, long she suffered his gaze and then quietly withdrew her eyes from his and bent them towards the stream, gently stirring the water with her foot hither and thither. The first faint noise of gently moving water broke the silence, low and faint and whispering, faint as the bells of sleep; hither and thither, hither and thither; and a faint flame trembled on her cheek.

—Heavenly God! cried Stephen's soul, in an outburst of profane joy.

He turned away from her suddenly and set off across the strand. His cheeks were aflame; his body was aglow; his limbs were trembling. On and on and on and on he strode, far out over the sands, singing wildly to the sea, crying to greet the advent of the life that had cried to him.

Her image had passed into his soul for ever and no word had broken the holy silence of his ecstasy. Her eyes had called him and his soul had leaped at the call. To live, to err, to fall, to triumph, to recreate life out of life! A wild angel had appeared to him, the angel of mortal youth and beauty, an envoy from the fair courts of life, to throw open before him in an instant of ecstasy the gates of all the ways of error and glory. On and on and on and on!

He halted suddenly and heard his heart in the silence. How far had he walked? What hour was it?

What is that? Does any reader, male or female, completely fail to identify (at least a little) with Stephen in this moment? Does anyone feel completely satisfied with the explanation that this is either "objectification of women by the patriarchy" or "a genetic predisposition to certain reproductively advantageous traits"? Can anyone say exactly what that feeling is, or how much of it comes from the girl's soul as opposed to coming from her face?

Her face is a map of the world
Is a map of the world.
You can see she's a beautiful girl
She's a beautiful girl.

Everything around her is a silver pool of light.
The people who surround her feel the benefit of it.
It makes you calm.
She holds you captivated in her palm.

She fills up every corner like she's born in black and white.
Makes you feel warmer when you're trying to remember
What you heard.
She likes to leave you hanging on her word.

Suddenly I see (suddenly I see)
This is what I wanna be.
Suddenly I see (suddenly I see)
Why the hell it means so much to me.
~ KT Tunstall

I know, I know—too many song lyrics, right? Once you start looking for them, they're everywhere. But "Suddenly I See" by KT Tunstall may be the most important one here.

This song looks at a beautiful girl from two perspectives. The first is the observer: KT Tunstall, looking at a picture of Patti Smith, feels calmed/captivated/warmed by her beauty. I think she feels something very akin to what Stephen felt in Portrait of the Artist. There is something absolutely transcendent in the feeling that we sometimes get from a beautiful girl (a beautiful girl), and I don't think even James Joyce expressed it better than "everything around her is a silver pool of light." As I keep saying, I think it hits men and women in much the same way.

But KT Tunstall is herself a woman, and she also takes the perspective of the observed. Like Janis Ian, like Dolly Parton, she wants to have that effect on others. This is what, as a man, I always struggle to understand. Of course no two girls are alike, and they all view themselves and their bodies differently. But pretty much every girl I've ever talked to in any depth seems to have that profound desire to be beautiful—in the eyes of one special man, in the eyes of her friends, in the eyes of the world, and perhaps most of all in her own eyes.

I'm sure some men feel that way too, but I honestly can't relate to it at all.

Who is that girl I see staring straight back at me?
When will my reflection show who I am inside?
~ Mulan (lyrics by David Zippel)

I have four observations about female beauty that are, I'm afraid, inherently politically incorrect. None of these is as simple as it sounds at first.

Do I love you because you're beautiful?
Or are you beautiful because I love you?
~ Prince Charming (lyrics by Oscar Hammerstein II)

I opened this essay with the classic Irving Berlin line "A pretty girl is like a melody." I want to close by returning to that analogy.

Because that transcendent feeling I'm talking about—Joyce's "holy silence of ecstasy," KT Tunstall's "silver pool of light"—it can come from a lot of other sources. From a mountain. From an Ansel Adams picture of a mountain. From a cloudy night with just a few stars visible through the haze, from a weatherbeaten stone in a thousand-year-old cathedral, from an owl perched immobile on a fence. And for me, as perhaps for Irving Berlin, the most reliable source of that feeling is music. I can remember being alone in the car with Journey's "Don't Stop Believing" cranked up and feeling like I was hearing the voices of angels. If I really want to describe something as awe-inspiring, I will compare it to music every time.

All of these experiences share a subtle interplay of biological imperatives, culturally learned norms, and perhaps something that goes a bit beyond both. It's fascinating to try to intellectually tease out the components, as I am doing in this essay. Such an exercise cannot capture, and yet does not diminish in any way, the pure experience. When Louis Armstrong was asked to define "swing" his answer was "If you have to ask, you'll never know." Some people feel "swing" and some don't. Some people feel opera, some feel heavy metal. But I think all of us know the music of a beautiful face, and we all want to sing along.

So now you know what I think. What do you think?


I originally posted this essay to Facebook, and most of the "Comments" below were done there.

From: Casey Dahlin

I get the sense that you misjudge where exactly it is you're controversial, and while you mention the literature, you seem most interested in explaining your own annecdote and the qualia that adorn them than simply assembling an empirical explanation of the data out of all those studies.

From: Mark Edward Minie

It may surprise you that social spiders, and many others, do not find any humans "beautiful" in any way...particularly galling to them is the lack of multiple compound eyes...

From: Michelle Williams

Check out John Cleese discusses faces and how we respond to them. A couple things stood out to me:

  1. The Golden Mean. I'd probably heard about it in some art class long before but did not understand it in terms of the human form. When you say that our standards of beauty seem somewhat universal, that seems to be the reason.

  2. He interviewed Pierce Brosnan who impacts me the way you describe Emma Watson impacting you. Cleese asked him when he realized he was beautiful (or something—I don't recall the exact adjective) and Pierce replied "around the age of 4."
My theory is that, if you have that symmetry and any socially acceptable level of cleanliness, politeness, etc (i.e. you're not pulling wings off flies regularly in public), you get approached differently than those who don't. And you respond positively to that and the cycle continues until you have learned how to shine. Some people overcome a lack of symmetry by being funny or super charming but many just go through life "knowing" they're unlikely to ever be considered "beautiful." Some learn to use that power that they have—to elicit positive response simply by looking/being—for good and some for evil.

I'm glad you mentioned music and other things near the end there. I read the entire thing thinking "Kenny responds to people's looks sometimes like I respond to seeing a beautiful beach and most beaches are beautiful." That there are things that make our hearts sing that are not immediately evolutionarily beneficial to us is sometimes used as "proof" of a higher power.

I saw a headline recently that said, "Famed Human Rights Lawyer and Her Husband Announce Pregnancy" or some such. (Amal Clooney) The point was that she is more than a beautiful bauble on her famous hubby's arm—she is a force, brilliant and amazing all on her own. And she's the one carrying the baby, not the famous hubby. I, as a feminist, was pleased. Later, I saw a headline like "Husband of Human Rights Lawyer Visits Fan in Nursing Home." I, as a feminist, was not pleased. George visited a fan of his; Amal had nothing to do with it. (Pretty sure both headlines were a bit of a joke. I'm not seeing them when I google these topics now.) When feminists complain about women's looks being a topic of conversation, it is generally along these lines. How many Senators do you know get asked about their wardrobes? Generally only the female ones. How many athletes get asked about their new haircut? Generally only the females ones. If you wouldn't ask the question of a male in the same role, don't ask it of a female. Or, if you think fashion is crucially important to the world, then ask the men too. But the lopsided is annoying as hell.

As always, thanks for writing. I always love reading your stuff.

From: Kenny Felder
I found a description of the John Cleese thing but not the thing itself. I guess I was hoping for a 5-10 minute video. If it's hours of documentary about the human face I probably won't watch it even if I find it. I kinda suck that way. Sorry!

I agree completely that a woman is more than a bauble on her husband's arm, even if he is famous and she isn't, and that they are always treated that way. But as I said in the essay, I'm afraid I have to to believe that male and female treatment will always be lopsided. I think people (male and female) will always be more interested in a woman's hairstyle or wardrobe than a man's, all other things being equal. And yes, I understand that that is infuriating to many people, possibly including you, and I really am sorry about that.

From: Kenny Felder
Oh, one more thing. Evolutionary biologists argue that there are very good and predictable evolutionary reasons why we are drawn to certain kinds of landscapes (such as the beach).

From: Michelle Williams
OK, that's interesting. What reasons? (Point me at a book or website, if you want.)

My mom has always said that, while most people's ancestors climbed down out of trees, ours came up out of the water is why she and I ache to be near water ALL THE TIME.

From: Kenny Felder
I actually remember E.O. Wilson talking specifically about our evolutionary habitat preferences, but I don't have a reference there. My Bible for all such things is anything by Steven Pinker—especially "How the Mind Works" and "The Blank Slate." The former has a section called "The Suburban Savanna" that's just over three pages long. He talks about experiments that have been done on the human preference for certain habitats over others, for certain kinds of plants and flowers, etc, and how they fit into the overall evolutionary model.

From: Michelle Williams
Cool, I'll add those to my list.

From: Kenny Felder
I cannot recommend those two Pinker books too highly. I found them both to be fascinating in so many ways. There is just one warning: "How the Mind Works" (the first, if you read the two books in sequence) has a very, very long section near the beginning devoted to optical processing. It's not particularly close to my own areas of interest. You might want to skim that part. Everything after that is gold.

From: Mark Edward Minie that humans have so clearly chosen a path to extinction, our computer models strongly indicate that social spiders will be our most likely successors to fill the dominant tech species niche we are now abandoning...

From: Mark Edward Minie

From: Kenny Felder

From: Vanessa Lopez

There is a 3rd group who discusses this topic quite often and that is the church. John and Staci Elderidge have a book called Captivating which discusses women's beauty from a biblical perspective and it's counterpart called Wild at Heart discusses men. You may be suprised by some of the things in these books!

From: Kenny Felder
You totally have my attention, Vanessa. Can you summarize what they say, as I attempted to do for the other two groups?

From: Vanessa Lopez
Yes, but first let me say I'm not sure if I have named the group well. I know there are many different beliefs among "the church" so please consider my grouping to be very general! The teaching however is specific and I've encountered it in books, sermons, and general conversation. The main idea is that both male and female genders are a unique reflection of the attributes of God. One of the ways females reflect God is in their beauty. Not just in the beauty they posses, but also their quest to discover beauty and to be beautiful. This would offer an explanation for the observations you've made regarding the nature of women to women compliments. In this line of thinking, beauty is not only a reflection of who God is but also a way of connecting to God. As we admire and appreciate the beauty in our lives we draw closer to God and our understanding of Him deepens. We see His beauty. That is a very concise summary, but this has been a life changing teaching for me. I had always been taught outside of church that the bible degrades women, but I believe that couldn't be farther from the truth!

From: Kenny Felder
That really is interesting, Vanessa. I hope everyone else who is interested is reading this!

From: Cathy Hurlocker Evans
I read Captivating many years ago. I do like how the Etheridge's write together.

From: Larry Iversen


  1. I have made the choice to call myself an artist/curator,

  2. I spend a lot of time photographing people, incl many who would be conventionally called "pretty," and many not,

  3. I think about philosophy ALL the time,

  4. I helped start an organization devoted to "sex positive" values.
So you've kind of stumbled directly into where I exist day-to-day. (And what's hilarious is I just happened to seemingly by pure luck run across your post at 3am on my way to bed...)

So it seems like you raise a number of different question one could naturally run with:

Does "Beauty" exist (outside an individual point of view) (and if so why)?

Does/should it apply to people?

Is it different for men and women (and how they perceive themselves, and each other) (and if so, why)?

What—if anything—is the difference between appreciation and prurience?

Curious if any of these topics really hits closer to what you're interested in than the others. (Don't want to wander off into tall weeds of contemplation on anything that misses your point. Because I could converse about any of them ad infinitum...they are among the most important questions I ever think about!)

From: Kenny Felder
All good questions, and all relevant. I tried to steer away from any prurient topics, because once you start down that road, people forget everything else you had to say. And I guess I was taking it for granted that beauty exists and applies to people. I did want to look at how it differs between men and women. But mostly what interests me is that the notion of beauty as it applies to the human form is in some ways different from the notion of beauty as it applies to anything else, because we are the humans. So it gets mixed up with other things. When one girl says to another "I love your hair," how much of that comment actually has to do with hair, as opposed to being a coded way of saying "I validate your worth as an individual" or "I'm here for you"? We don't have to ask that question when we remark on a beautiful flower.

From: Larry Iversen
Really all I meant by "does it exist" is that it seems to me the concept—Objective Beauty—bears some similarity to that "Cosmic Meaning" paradox you've been known to wrestle with—to wit, for it to be profound it has to exist outside of my individuality, but if it does, then it's part of the scientific world and therefore reducible to meaninglessness (at least I hope that isn't an over-simplified summary of that line of reasoning...).

From: Kenny Felder
Well, I don't need to go quite that deep in this case, since I was focusing on the psychology—that exists, whether beauty is entirely subjective or not.

From: Larry Iversen
lol... check

From: Mark Edward Minie
Remember my post about social spiders? Do you really believe there is an objective standard of beauty? Note that most of our hominid ancestors would not consider any modern humans any of you think chimps are beautiful in the way you suggest here? Should we survive and our lineage continue, our descendants are highly unlikely to even be recognizably human to us, let alone "beautiful"...see LAST AND FIRST MEN...

From: Larry Iversen
Oh sorry, I was speaking of a more abstract concept of Beauty—a beautiful bridge, a beautiful theorem, &c.... Was looking to establish *that* before moving on to consider the concept as applied to the human form. I agree completely that say, angler-fish are ugly as hell to me but most certainly not to each other!

From: Mark Edward Minie
There is no reason to believe other intelligences would agree with us that something like a bridge or equation was "beautiful"...

From: Kenny Felder
Mark, it sounds like you're advocating what I called the evolutionary psychology approach. Did you feel that my essay oversimplified that system too much, or did not do it justice?

From: Mark Edward Minie
Actually no...what I am getting at is that "beauty" is an entirely human construct that has no meaning whatsoever in objective reality...just as quantum physics tells us that there are "wave-particles" but human minds can't actually grasp intuitively what those are or visualize them...we just know that mathematics and experimental data tell us that they exist and more broadly that the universe is beyond individual human comprehension in terms that can be handled by our evolved brains...fortunately, science gives us a set of tools that gives us the ability to at least understand that the universe is not only stranger than we imagine, it is stranger than we can imagine any yet we can develop useful constructs that our brains can use to survival truth, though, there is no beauty...

From: Kenny Felder
But according to that view, if I understand it properly, "beauty" is an elaborate evolutionary mechanism. We are drawn to certain kinds of landscapes, certain kinds of women, certain kinds of animals, certain kinds of sounds, certain tastes, and so on, because our ancestors who were drawn to precisely those things had an advantage over others who were not. That's one point of view I was attempting to articulate in the essay, and it seems to me that it is the logical conclusion of the point of view you're articulating here. Am I missing something?

From: Mark Edward Minie
Several of the responses on this thread try to make the argument that there is a universal standard for beauty...while I agree that the human definition of beauty is largely formed by evolution, the general concept of beauty has no meaning beyond that.

From: Larry Iversen
So here's my *personal* take, to put it super-SUPER simply: I believe that sentience follows rules just like physics follows rules (albeit different ones), and a sense of what "Beauty" means can follow from those rules, and therefore be generalized throughout any system (brain, ai, alien intelligence) which possesses sentience.

From: Mark Edward Minie
since we have no scientifically useful definition of contagiousness or even sentience except the sense that we as individuals believe we are conscious and sentient (with no real evidence that anyone outside of own skulls actually has these features to be certain...) and that there are currently no other examples of sentient beings in the universe to discuss this with, the "SIMPLE" argument that tis it a universal thing like universal laws of physics is very hard for me to buy into...

From: Larry Iversen

(BTW, I can't believe it took this long for one of my all time favorite Aqua Teen Hunger Force quotes to pop to mind: "It's the beautiful people that are the smart ones, and it's that very same smartness that makes them rich." —Master Shake)

From: Kenny Felder
What does it mean?

From: Larry Iversen
It's satire of how people conflate merit. (Sorry—definitely one of those cases that really calls for the non-existent "sarcasm" punctuation.)

From: Kenny Felder
OK, got it!

From: Anne Bunai

Kenny, that's a whole lotta thinking going on here. One word, hormones. Men reacting to women is influenced by their hormonal disposition at the time among a very few other things. Beauty is symmetry. Therefore a symmetrical combination of differing traits can appeal differently to individual people. We each have trait preferences...which often look something like our own or our parents reflection. Add to that—personality—which can "light up" an otherwise common beauty. Female beauty cannot be extricated from nature, nuture, mathmatics, religion, context, etc. Beauty, as perceived by others, is embued with power and advantage. It is a gift and can be a burden to those who possess "it." Like fame, it has its upside and downside. Different women (not girls) can be attractive or beautiful or pretty or stunning or classic or natural. Each is different. What makes us swoon is hormones, symmetry, surroundings, availability, etc., oh, yes, and music!

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