Beauty is in the eye of the beholder. And the beholder has grown up watching the Victoria’s Secret Fashion show that’s not really a fashion show and digesting Sport Illustrated swimsuit covers. We, as a people, have a general idea of what’s attractive, even if what’s “attractive” is often the result of a trainer, hair extensions, good camera lighting, self-tanner, a great diet, lots of exercise, Photoshop and good ol’ genetics.
But aside from the world of the “Professional Pretty” class of folks who get paid for giving good face (actors, models, entertainers, singers, etc.), there are the many, many more of us in the much more difficult to categorize land of “regulars,” where all beauty is relative.
Enter, stage right, this woman:
While I’m no Elle Macpherson, I’m tall, slim, blonde and, so I’m often told, a good-looking woman. I know how lucky I am. But there are downsides to being pretty — the main one being that other women hate me for no other reason than my lovely looks.
If you’re a woman reading this, I’d hazard that you’ve already formed your own opinion about me — and it won’t be very flattering. For while many doors have been opened (literally) as a result of my looks, just as many have been metaphorically slammed in my face — and usually by my own sex.
I’m not going to delve into whether or not the author of this, Samantha Brick, is comely. Because, again, she opens with saying she’s not a member of the professional pretty class like Elle Macpherson, but one of “us” –regulars. And she wants her attractiveness judged in that context. Maybe she’s thinner and blonder than others in a land of the short, squat and brunette. I don’t know. I’m not in her life. But what is and isn’t pretty is often a matter of taste among us regulars.
Like I had to accept oh-so-long ago that I was not Professional Pretty “hot.” Hot in that ethereal, unreachable way that some women are just born into being. I’m cute. I can be pretty or lovely or even beautiful depending on what day it is and if I bothered to use concealer. But universally good looking? Hot? No. I am not hot. Even the guy who “thinks” I’m hot for whatever reason is usually referring to some body part of mine that would be oh-so-hot all on its own if it weren’t attached to 5’3” of awkward black nerd girl.
But in the land of regulars, how do you know if someone is hating because they’re muy celoso or because you’re just one of those obnoxious slags who refuses to acknowledge that you may be a jerky-mc-jerkface and people don’t like you because you’re rude or lacking interpersonal skills?
1) Are you able to make and retain friends, often for years?
If yes, stop. Why are you taking this quiz? Everyone’s supposed to hate you so much they can’t be friends with you, ugmo. Back to the line.
If no, continue.
2) Are you in a public place?
If yes. Stay where you are, I have questions.
If not, go some place public to finish this quiz, a café, coffee shop, your job, school, wherever anyone can see you.
3) Is anyone looking at you?
If no, stop. No one is jealous of you. Everyone knows that the truly gorgeous turn heads and people can’t stop staring.
If yes, continue.
4) Is the person looking at you looking like they’re full of desire or disgust?
If desire, continue to No. 5. If disgust, skip to No. 7.
5) Mmm. Desire, eh? Do you think they’re cute too?
If yes, that’s interesting. Go on to No. 6.
If no, DON’T MAKE EYE CONTACT. They’ll walk over! See if there’s someone else looking who’s less terrifying, then go on to No. 6.
6) Do you hate them for being cute?
If yes, then yes! I believe that you believe people hate you because you’re beautiful because you’re the kind of sad person who projects your lookism (yes I made that up) onto others and judges them for it. Because you hate people because they’re good looking. Because you’re a narcissist. Or perhaps you have histrionic personality disorder. You just need to be the prettiest. The fairest of them all. And in your self-obsession you push those thoughts onto others. Because while we all deal with occasional jealousy and competitive lookism at some point in our lives, if folks are still “hating” because you’re cute and you’re over 25 it’s only because you’ve never, ever left high school and you’re a cast member on Basketball Wives.
If no, you’re probably a healthy, well-adjusted person who realizes that only a maladjusted person would be so petty to judge people solely by their looks post the age of 25 and not take into account all the other things about us that make us interesting. Besides, you’re good looking and secure in being good looking. You stopped caring what anyone thought a long time ago. You win in life. Jealous people are just sad folks who haven’t grown up. But you’ve transcended. Bully for you.
7) They’re disgusted, eh? Did you forget to wear pants to the coffee shop again?
If yes, go home and put on some damn pants, girl. You’re way too goofy for anyone to hate.
If no, tell me this …
8) Do you still think you look awesome even though they’re giving you the stink eye, refusing to consider that something just may be off about you?
If yes, people probably hate you for how you look. But it might not be jealousy. Perhaps something about how you present yourself reminds them of their own personal fears and horrors. Just because you’ve transcended to a point where you feel no shame about wearing four inch heels and a Bodycon dress to Starbucks like it’s the “clerb” doesn’t mean we’ve all advanced to your level of not giving a crap. Pity us, those who still care about social norms and mores, not hate. Sure we may shout “PUT ON SOME PANTS” when you walk down the street, but screw us. What do we know about your life?
If no, you’re normal. No one hates you. Stop being so darn paranoid.
Also, constantly complaining about other lady people “hating” you for being beautiful sounds like something a jerk would say. Because it’s good to be pretty if you are pretty, and most attractive people know how horrible that sounds to complain about something so hard to obtain and keep. Because if you truly are beautiful, inside and out, the good outweighs the occasional weirdness from someone who never graduated from the 9th grade every time.
What do you care what a few petty, sad people think? They’re not even worth talking about. You’re beautiful.
Unless you’re beautiful, but a jerk.
Then you should probably be concerned.
And if you’re just regular and a jerk … it’s not us. It’s you.