Sexy is Timeless

We’re inundated every day with images of female beauty. The folks that art direct those photo shoots and then later assemble those photos into catalogs and magazines are looking for what is interesting to the camera. The lens makes its own demands. . . for angles. Cheekbones. Enormous lips. Stark clavicles.

Victoria's Secret model Erin Heatherton
Erin Heatherton in a Victoria’s Secret photo.

They’re thinking about an “in” type of hot. If you’re not that type, you probably have to fight off a sense of unhotness. So let’s put the Erin Heatherton trend in perspective. Here is a top model from the past several decades.

1950s

Dovima
Dovima

1960s

TWIGGY
Twiggy

1970s

Iman
Iman

1980s

Brooke Shields
Brooke Shields

1990s

Claudia Schiffer
Claudia Schiffer

And then let’s go all the way back to the eighteenth century.

A painting by Goya, 1797-1800
La Maja Desnuda by Francisco de Goya

The only thing these women have in common is an ability to stare down the camera. One year, magazine covers display full-figured bombshells. The next year, all we see are lean athletic types. The crime is thinking we’re supposed to look like any of them.

Stylish women wear what works for them regardless of how trendy it is. They understand that definitions of beauty in the media change, but that in real life beauty and style and sex appeal are timeless–and all about confidence. Any of the models shown above would agree with you. Would youthful, full-faced Brooke Shields have gotten a modeling gig today? Probably not. Even knockout Claudia Schiffer might not have been considered thin enough if she was entering today’s modeling world as a young beginner. But are they gorgeous? No duh.

Compare that to the “Facebook smooch.” Ever walked into a bar and passed two girls with long, curled, bleached hair, fake tans, frosted lips, and dark eyeliner, kissing their camera for a Facebook pic of their hot night out? Ever wanted to say, “Girls, where are you under all that?” They’re technically doing everything right, if there is anything technical about beauty. They are Allure covers come to life. But you have to wonder what’s under all that spray paint. . .

The problem: when you walk past one of those issues of Allure and chastise yourself for not doing yourself up more.

Who cares. What feels sexy to you?

Yes, there are men who are attracted to women because they look like today’s definition of hot. Mostly investment bankers and men who consider online chatting a form of dating. But these are not particularly interesting men–they have little innate taste of their own. They need to be told what’s hot. They’re not particularly imaginative in other aspects of their lives either (hint hint).

A smart guy will surprise you with a confession: I always look at her pedicure first. I find a woman who can rock a crazy outfit incredibly hot. I don’t care what porn actresses look like, hairless muffs freak me out. And so forth. Long hair, short hair, curly hair, straight hair–guess what, a guy’s taste is as varied as that of you and your girlfriends. And to put this conversation even further into perspective, let’s remember that forty years ago, women wanted this guy:

Burt Reynolds in the 70s
Burt Reynolds

And now we’re supposed to shriek with horror at the sight of a hairy chest.

Myself, I have very seventies taste. I’d flirt with Burt any time. But maybe that’s just me–if everyone’s saying Matt Damon’s the hottest guy in the universe and you meet a guy who looks nothing like him, of course you’ll turn him down, right?

Who are we kidding?

Whether you are Dovima hot, or Roseanne Barr hot, somewhere in the middle, or off on your own crazy tangent–go forth and prosper, you li’l babe, you.

2 Responses

  1. Oh wow! LOVE this article, Peaches! Great job of putting standards of beauty in perspective and reminding us all that taste is varied, “perfection” is overrated, and being uniquely yourself is HOT.

    Like

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