[To begin with, apologies for the low level of activity here at this blog, and elsewhere. I am still catching up with comments here. Hopefully I will have time to respond to them today. The next few weeks will be very busy for me, and posting and commenting will be erratic, at best. So don’t be surprised if my weekend, religious themed posts are the only ones I make. Not sure how long this will continue, but into October at the very least.]
Short post today, following up with something I said in my most recent musings post. Therein I said the following:
Something that I want to address as well is the Looks/Athleticism versus Personality debate that seems to show up all the time in the comment section at The Rationale Male. A lot of folks there place too much stock in Looks, as compared to the other LAMPS/PSALM attributes. My suspicion is that the reason why is because Looks and Athleticism are obvious to everyone, whereas Personality/Power can be much more difficult to pick up. Not sure when I will get to writing it, but would love to finish it sometime this month.
To clarify, when I say Looks in that quote I meant the more general category of Appearance, which is used in the simpler alternative to my LAMPS/PSALM formula, APE, to encompass both Looks and Athleticism. I don’t think most of Rollo’s commenters distinguish between the two, so for the remainder of this post I will use Appearance, or A, in lieu of Looks and/or Athleticism.
To quickly summarize what many argue over at Rollo’s blog: Appearance matters more than anything. Good looking men get all the good looking women. Personality and “Game” only gets a man so far. If you aren’t born good-looking, you are just out of luck.
There’s more, but I think I got the heart of it. As for my response, well, I think that argument is bunk. Which should surprise no one, really, since I’ve argued for over a year that the most important part of male sexual attractiveness is a man’s masculinity and personality, which are both tied together. I think there are two reasons why many of the men there have come to that erroneous conclusion.
The first reason is that handsome, good-looking men are also more likely to be confidence and assertive, and those score stronger on their Personality/Power attribute. This comes about because Appearance is the easiest attribute to evaluate. You just need to look at a man to get a fairly accurate reading on where he falls on the scale of Appearance. Since women notice it so easily, they will often direct a lot of attention early on at handsome men, in order to evaluate them more fully (although they may not consciously realize this). Such attention will often, at least initially, be positive. Good-looking men who receive this kind of positive attention are likely to build their confidence more easily, as well as to hone their communication skills with women. This in turn will, over time, improve their Power/Personality scores as well.
So it isn’t simply that handsome men just have their looks going for them, they often will also have their confidence and interpersonal skills going for them as well. But those talents/skills aren’t as visible as a man’s looks. So those who observe the success of handsome men with women don’t realize that a lot more is going on beneath the surface than just looks. This is supported by reports from many in the ‘sphere of conventionally handsome men who were able to get initial attention from women but quickly lose it due to personality defects. Whether that is shyness or feminization leading to an emasculated personality, those men find themselves victims of the fact that Power/Personality is more important than Appearance to female sexual attraction.
The second reason for this disconnect is that women want it all. Women want a man who scores well on all the LAMPS/PSALM factors. If given the choice between a good-looking man “with Game” and an average-looking man “with Game”, women will choose the former (at least, in so far as attraction is concerned). Since good-looking men tend to be confident, they “have Game”, more often than not, it stands to reason that a good-looking man will simply be more attractive all around than a man who isn’t good-looking. Surmounting that hurdle is possible though. Strong External factors, such as social Status or Money, can give an average-looking man an edge. But relatively few men can have that kind of Status or Money. So in the present SMP good-looking men have a significant advantage over men who are only average (or below) in looks. This is only heightened by the fact that women can often achieve decent Status and Money values for themselves, thus raising the bar for men. Personality can compensate for a deficiency in Appearance, but it is very, very difficult to have Power/Personality score that is high enough to beat out a man with a high Appearance score and a high Power/Personality score.
Taken together, those two factors- good-looking men also have a high Power/Personality score, and women wanting it all, explain the phenomenon that the commenters at Rollo’s blog have observed and described. Of course, my readers are free to disagree and voice that disagreement in the comments.
I should note that I also have another post on attraction which I want to work on, although I have no idea when I’ll have the time for it. I want to explore some alternate theories of attraction, including that which Rollo seems to advocate.