It IS what you look like, how young and how sexy you are. Everything else is secondary and here's why! BIOLOGY.

Screenwriter

I am NOT an economist, sociologist or evolutionary biologist, but I listen to them, read up on them and peruse documentaries. What they say makes sense.

How ugly are these two? Yep. Not at all.

The human species selects for physical health and mental acuity. The first indications of physical health: physical symmetry. Secondarily, youth. Most young people, by virtue of a perfectly functioning immune system, are inherently healthy.

What's physical "symmetry"? Well, symmetry is balance on the left side and right side of the body. If you split someone's face in half and create a mirror-image picture, the new picture will not make a "face" that appears "off." The same counts for the body. If you look at someone and one arm or leg is visibly shorter than the other, this indicates genetic anomalies. Few, if any, of these anomalies may be passed on to offspring. But the APPEARANCE of anomalies is at least a "pink" flag.

Physical symmetry is most obvious in someone's face

"During the European Renaissance, renowned artists and architects used an equation known as the "golden ratio" to map out their masterpieces. Thousands of years later, scientists adopted this mathematical formula to help explain why some people are considered beautiful…and others are not.

Dr. Kendra Schmid, an assistant professor of biostatistics, uses the golden ratio and 29 other measurements to study facial sex appeal . These measurements are calculated to determine a person's beauty on a scale of 1 to 10. What does she measure?

A. First, Dr. Schmid measures the length and width of the face. Then, she divides the length by the width. The ideal result—as defined by the golden ratio—is roughly 1.6, which means a beautiful person's face is about 1 1/2 times longer than it is wide

B. Next, Dr. Schmid measures three segments of the face—from the forehead hairline to a spot between the eyes, from between the eyes to the bottom of the nose, and from the bottom of the nose to the bottom of the chin. If the numbers are equal, a person is considered more beautiful.

C. Finally, statisticians measure other facial features to determine symmetry and proportion. On a perfect face, Dr. Schmid says the length of an ear is equal to the length the nose, and the width of an eye is equal to the distance between the eyes.

Most people score between 4 and 6, and Dr. Schmid says no one has ever been a perfect 10."

From: "The Beauty Equation"

Here's a man's face that hits the ratio. The best looking movie stars, no matter what color, race, ethnicity, hit most of the ratio's points.

Jensen Ackles golden looks.
Jensen Ackles' golden looks.

I'll name a few film stars whose faces I love: Brad Pitt, Henry Cavill, Idris Elba, Sidney Poitier & Harry Belafonte as young men, Denzel Washington, George Clooney, Robert Redford, Chris Evans, Chris Hemsworth, Woody Harrelson, Dwayne Johnson, James McAvoy, Paul Rudd, Chris Pine; Robert Mitchum, Laurence Olivier, Charlie Chaplin, Sean Connery as younger men, Morgan Freeman and "Darth Vadar's" voice, James Earl Jones.

They aren't ALL the movie stars I like. But in perusing the list of those who are accomplished, there are odd looking guys. Tom Holland looks like a little kid, Ryan Reynold's face is too long, Adam Driver has an oversized, overlong head. Good actors. Lack facial symmetry.

Here's another giveaway for the males of the species who want to attract a female. A deep voice. Vocal chords lengthen, and voices deepen because of high levels of testosterone.

What's a marker of male "health?" High levels of testosterone. Men advertise this by opening their mouths and talking to a woman. No one has to be a Paul Robeson, the great, black bass operatic singer of the 1930s through the '50s. He's famous for singing "Old Man River," in "Showboat." But all it takes is one conversation! Healthy females want to hook up with a healthy male.

Is your skin scarred by acne, or do you STILL have acne? Advertises you have hormonal issues that outweigh your body's ability to overcome them. A health issue.

Look, again, at all our movie stars. There are few outliers with pocked faces. But don't they always play the bad guys and gals? Do the stars of the show have bad skin? Ah, ah... The top dogs don't need spackling to cover up skin flaws. In fact, on most of those faces you can't even FIND a pore.

Look at their bodies. What's the common denominator? Fitness.

When the elder actors were in their prime, and for those who still are, what do their bodies look like? Everyone in my list is full of muscle. That's another advertiser of high testosterone levels and health. Superskinny or flabby men aren't candidates to attract women. Right down the middle, or slightly above average in musculature. No need for a six pack, but need for useful muscles.

Also, men need a modicum of body fat to produce healthy sperm. So there needs to be balance. If a man has too much body fat, he produces inferior sperm and extra estrogen, so he loses the male characteristics that advertise he's a healthy mate.

The rules are more flexible for women, but they concern fitness, also. Most men don't choose thin women. This is a red flag that tells them these women don't have enough body fat to be impregnated or to carry a baby to term. It's a fact that if women have too little body fat they become amenorrheaic. They won't have a period; won't release an egg and can't be impregnated. If they're obese, this can also affect hormone levels and fertility. Too much body fat releases hormones that affect the menstrual cycle. That right down the middle weight applies equally to females.

Tasty pair.

Sweet Bird of Youth

Men are favored on the evolutionary scale of success by NOT having a limited supply of eggs that need fertilization and by not having their fertility start to slip in their 30s. They've got pretty free rein until they hit about 45 and then sperm quality dips. HOWEVER, men are still capable of sperm production until around age 80. Whether they are capable of depositing that sperm in the receptacle that will grow a baby at age 80 is another thing entirely. But most virile men's virility lasts through to their 70s if they're otherwise HEALTHY.

Because age affects eggs and sperm, younger women have more and healthier eggs than older women.
Younger men have more active and better-quality sperm than older men.

And what about aging and looks, you ask.

What does aging advertise to potential mates?

YOU ARE PAST YOUR BIOLOGICALLY OPTIMAL PRIME. No one wants someone who looks "old" or undesirable. That is not humanly rational. This is why 70 year old men go out with 35 year old women. Why 40 year old men chase 20 year old women. Younger women still have their biology on their side. Older men can still make babies with them. This might not be what these particular men want, rationally, but it's what our lizard brains push us to do as the thinly veiled animals that we are.

What about men who choose women who are near or the same age as them even when they're older? These are most likely men who've successfully mated and produced offspring and feel satisfied with that achievement. Here's where the biological impetus often drops off. It could also be men who've never felt the urge to spread their genes.

But men and women of all ages still respond to the beauty equation. Older, healthy looking men and women STILL get more action than those who've "let themselves go." And by letting yourself go, I mean the laundry list of having no outside interests, never exercising, not being connected to what's going on in the world, your family and friends, events of all kinds: gardening, bike rides, canoeing, travel, painting your house, mowing your lawn, cooking, being organized.

This likewise applies to the young and the pretty. True, you can lead a woman to bed and fuck her, but if you've got no skills, can you fuck her ENOUGH to have a genetic win with her? And if you want more than a fuck and run, even with the bonus of impregnation, can you KEEP her?

Here is where the SECONDARY factors come into play. ANYONE, practically EVERYONE can get knocked up and get some offspring. But can the two of you form a long lasting couple, or co parent to RAISE that offspring? And if the first coupling didn't work, can you learn from it to have a better, later coupling that gives all your offspring advantages?

Do you understand that a good looking fertile partner is ONLY the start? That people with love and compassion, patience and kindness, creativity and a sense of adventure are the kinds of people we all want to know and love all our lives. If we're lucky, we knew them in our parents and grandparents. Then we reinvent them by choosing similar friends. And finally we discover them in potential partners.

Those are the final traits we want to foster and pass along. OK his face is too long and her legs are too short. But they love us to death and they love our kids and grandkids. That's the complete picture of biological success. It starts off shallow, then it dives deep. And that's the story of humanity and of joy and strength!

It IS what you look like, how young and how sexy you are. Everything else is secondary and here's why! BIOLOGY.
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Most Helpful Guy

  • Moon23
    The Moderator of the General Assembly of the Evangelical Presbyterian Church, Right Reverend Dr. Seth Agidi is calling on religious bodies and NGOs to develop and implement social protection programmes to complement government’s intervention of enhancing the livelihood of the aged and other vulnerable in society.

    Rt. Rev. Dr. Agidi, who is the Founder and immediate past Executive Director of the Shepherd Centre of Ageing, Ghana said even though the government’s LEAP programme is laudable, the intervention is not extensive enough to cover the overwhelming and dire needs of the ageing population and other disadvantaged in rural communities across the country.

    He was speaking at Have in the Afadjato South District of the Volta Region during the inauguration of a recreational center for the aged in that community.
    Is this still revelant?
    • Cultures that don't value the gifts of their elder community are cultures that are doomed to repeat failures that impact the general population because they lack the maturity to recognize events that their elders witnessed in THEIR youths. Grandparents, great-grandparents (my great grandmother raised my mother and baby sat for me when I was going through childhood illnesses such as measles and chickenpox 55 years ago. She was kind and funny. A gardener. I love lillies and gardening because of her and my other grandmother) are valuable people. Just as the very young have THEIR gifts to give.

Most Helpful Girl

  • Allebana
    Nice, a reasonable take on beauty and the biological part of dating
    Is this still revelant?

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What Girls & Guys Said

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  • Obtuse
    I think the evolutionary explanations help explain "mainstream" sorts of trends since we all share in common the underlying evolutionary programming, but I think there's a tendency when considering it a complete explanation to overlook the more abstract aspects of human nature.

    Human beings are capable of operating on highly abstract goals that can get to the point of being completely contradictory to their natural fitness like suicide or genocide or a lover choosing to devote themselves and stay with someone who recently acquired an injury or sickness that renders them incapable of reproduction.

    There are values and poetry and superstitions and psychology and the human imagination and "love" (of a kind beyond mere chemical reactions in the brain) and all that jazz. I think they influence sufficiently to make a nontrivial number of humans select for mates in ways not ideal for their own natural fitness without necessarily "compromising" unless we want to look at everything from the narrow lens of natural selection.
    • Obtuse

      And we have a tendency to psychologically idolize and romanticize people who behave most contradictory to their evolutionary goals... like that one who chooses to stay with a lover who is sickly and cannot reproduce, the hero who sacrifices his own life to save others, the girl who picks the guy who is very good and noble over prince charming, etc. These things can still probably be reconciled to an evolutionary framework, like a hero who sacrifices his life for others may be acting contradictory to his own fitness but whose altruistic action is raising the fitness of all those around him. I'm sure there are some ways like that where we can connect dots, but I think it's much more complicated than some give credit.

      And I think I operate on pretty complex criteria like I'm the type who finds laugh lines on a woman attractive in spite of it being a sign of aging and declining fertility since I find some sort of poetic beauty there. A lot of the things I like don't make that much sense from what's optimal in evolutionary contexts. You might say the secondary factors are more important to me in more cases than the primary.

    • Obtuse

      I tend to find psychology more insightful than biology as a result, at least in explaining my own tendencies if not that of others. I tend to focus more on biology though since I specialized in bioinformatics in uni and that was a large component of my study (although in a very specialized context) and I used to subscribe very strongly to some possibly oversimplistic explanations. Yet over time, I got more into the poetry and jazz kind of stuff, psychology and philosophy, love and romance, hopes and dreams, the seemingly unlimited scope of the human imagination, more arts and humanities type of stuff to complement my STEM stuff, and I find that fills in a whole lot of gaps I had in my own understanding.

    • Shamalien

      The immediate, simple, and sad answer is that we probably encourage the hero to give his life so that we don't have to. It represents us following our evolutionary programming, and the hero following his too, in terms of social programming, he wants to be liked, and people like the one who sacrifices himself for others, and so the good die while the world remains full of demons.

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  • xyz94
    Facial symmetry is definitely an indicator of physical attractiveness across cultures. Many studies have shown this.

    The odd thing is that some celebrities who are claimed to have the golden ratio, for example Cate Blanchett and Robert Pattinson, are considered to be a bit ugly by some people! I personally don't think that these two are 'ugly', but I don't think they have the best faces either.
  • DWornock
    I don't know about the golden ratio but everything else true. For women, the universal characteristics of beauty that all beauty icons and even all Disney princesses have are bilateral symmetry, small waist to hip ratio, a youthful appearance, smooth clear skin, and big eyes.
  • HeyMikie
    I have also seen some interesting studies with men. One involving hip to waist ratio and one involving curvature of the lower back just above the buttocks. In both studies, with two different groups of men, the attributes that were prefered by 80% of men were the attributes that were best for carrying a baby and giving birth.
  • Bandit74
    Hopefully in the future genetic engineering will become the norm and everyone can be born with desirable traits.
  • You are wrong on the interracial couples part. People want to procreate with individuals that can best survive in the natural habitat they are native to. There is no universal physical fitness, nor immune system.
    • There is no longer a "natural habitat" in the modern world. We live in air conditioned houses, work places, cars. Shop in air conditioned stores. Universal fitness is recognizable. People have a certain percentage of muscle and body fat. There is wiggle room. General health means if sick you can fight off most illnesses or recover from them when you fall prey to them. Your immune system works. It's not a cookie cutter equation. Successful mating occurs when both people have the ability to procreate and they have the least similar genetics. So people from the MOST disparate backgrounds will likely have the best genetic outcomes for their children. Happy, smart, strong people have no location or race. They are everywhere in the world. You'll see them smiling and laughing and loving all over the planet. You don't have to support interracial relationships for YOURSELF. That's fine. But to say they shouldn't happen when people have successfully navigated them from time immemmorial. And if you blend a host of different racial, colored people, you achieve a "mean" that is attractive to most people. I find it heartwarming.

    • Interracial couples are most certainly not all loving each other as you proclaim. Interracial marriage between black men and white women is 200% more likely to end up in divorce than between a white woman and a white man.
      thoughtcatalog.com/.../
      It IS what you look like, how young and how sexy you are. Everything else is secondary and here's why! BIOLOGY.

      "We live in air conditioned houses, work places, cars. Shop in air conditioned stores."
      No we dont, that is an extreme prejudice you hold. For one, I as most Europeans dont have air-conditioning. Secondly, not all of the world lives as privileged as you Americans.

      " So people from the MOST disparate backgrounds will likely have the best genetic outcomes for their children"
      The places were people live the longest and are the healthiest are places were there has not been any ethnic changes for many thousands of years. Okinawa Japan , Sardinia Italia, and Ikaria Greece.
      www.aplaceformom.com/.../

    • I am NOT talking about individual problems that people bring to interracial relationships. I'm talking about emotionally healthy couples. People may choose interracial relationships for the wrong reasons. I want a WHITE woman. I want an Asian woman. Those are bad reasons to be in a relationship. So, those relationships fail. I'm talking about people who stumble upon each other and find common ground. There are also loads of other issues: mental and physical health problems. Those may be amplified in relationships that are atypical. I'm simply touting GENETICS. Nothing else.

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  • DianaWest
    ryan Reynolds is considered attractive by many, even though he may have an "asymmetrical long face." people who have facial symmetry can still be quite plain looking or even ugly. having acne scars does not signify any "genetic anomalies" or poor health. the only thing that I agree with is the biological clock, and the last bit of your Take sounded better than what you began with. and to be clear, women's fertility begins to SLIGHTLY drop in her early 30s, and begins to decline more rapidly by 35. and I highly doubt that most 35 year old women have to settle for 75 year old men.
    • I too think Reynolds is attractive. But it's not about his face. It's about his personality, THEN the rest. Acne scars DO signify genetic anomalies. I'm not saying you shouldn't mate with acne scarred people. I HAVE ACNE SCARS. But smooth faced people are MORE ATTRACTIVE is all. It can be incremental. And of course the dip in fertility is only slight. I got pregnant at 39 after two months of not really trying. BUT, the stats said I'd have to wait a year to be impregnated. Well statistics aren't all right. I was clearly outside the average. I don't know where you come up with the figure of 75 year olds. I did say some middle aged men go for women half their ages. I don't think most 75 year olds are seeking thirty something women, and I don't think those women will settle for men that age either, unless they're accomplished and have a whole lot of verve! I never said that in my take. I was primarily referring to the forty/fifty year olds robbing the post college cradles. It's a problem for young men seeking women near their own ages. Those men have money, careers, lots of power that is attractive to young women:: they remind those women of their fathers! Whereas young men have lots of potential and can GET those things in time. This is why older women often pick younger men. They SEE the potential, where women the young men's age, don't. I cite the Hugh Jackmen case. His wife is more than a decade older. They met at the right time. She was still fertile, he was up and coming, but hadn't made X men status. She KNEW. Now she manages are major star who is SO multitalented it's ridiculous. Think of the Greatest Showman and Oklahoma!.. Sings, dances, damatizes. Looks FINE!!! He was in his twenties, she in her thirties. THey got the babies out of the way and he focused solely on his work while she worked for them in the background.

  • BlackCatBone
    Being with an older men as a woman is definitely not wise in a biological way as he won't be able to provide for her as long as a younger one anyway.
  • Sixgun77
    I can dig it. The face pictured in the diagram reminds me of Dean Winchester.
    • It IS Jensen Ackles. I've always thought he was beautiful. Now I know why. OH, and that VOICE. Can't leave out THAT part.

    • Sixgun77

      Ha! Nailed it!

  • Lliam
    Excellent MyTake, Screenwriter.
    • I bow gratefully in your general direction Lliam... We hang around long enough, we can put these things into context.

  • Browneye57
    You my dear are absolutely brilliant!
    • Yep, some days I pull my brains out of my ass! Kisses to you and yours!

    • Couldn't give you MHO. Then I'd be kissing my own ass. But NEXT time...

  • Meropatrick
    Very interesting 👍🏼
  • COMMODOREII
    Amen sister!!
    • You are so sweet. I hope everybody you like kisses you today or some day coming up... everybody who's healthy, I mean...

    • Yeah sweet love!! 😂

  • SecretGardenBlood65
    Good take.
  • realmind
    You can't run away from nature
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