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Vitamin Q: the book!

~ Sunday, February 01, 2004

A baker's dozen of beauty standards:

1 Familiarity Looks - those which set off that pleasant sensation derived from perusing an old friend or colleague of whom, however unattractive or unconventional, one has grown fond.

2 Super Looks - bland, perfectly symmetrical, mathematically provable good looks which are instantly forgettable. See: any clothes model.

3 Beholder looks - having one of those features (snub nose, eagle nose, jutting chin) or looks (china doll, fop, tomboy, goth) which do it for 5% of us but not for the rest.

4 Teller Looks - Mild but unthreatening good looks, a few degrees above ‘plain’, of the sort required by law in order for you to work in a bank.

5 Ooh! Oh! Looks - Remarkable first impressions which fade fast. ‘Ooh, he’s good looking! Oh, actually, now I look closer, eurgh!’

6 Blind Looks - those which seem only to appeal to a loved one. The way a mother in denial feels about a child with especially interesting physiognomy.

7 Character Looks - otherwise known as ‘joli(e)-laid(e)’ ie pretty / ugly. Unusual looks which are somehow at once both attractive and unattractive.

8 Fleeting Looks - those which are down purely to age and sadly won’t last.

9 Fox Looks - having ‘fox looks’ means to be basically conventionally unattractive, but still to cause sensations of lust in the majority of onlookers.

10 Kind Looks - those belonging to someone who, though short of sexual charisma, you instantly want to befriend and settle down with.

11 Transplant Looks - applied to people who are physically unattractive, but have other things going for them such as fame or money. Think inbred heiresses, fat comedians and gangster rappers.

12 Glow-in-the-Dark Looks - some people's faces just change in the darkness during intimacy, making them radiantly beautiful (even if they aren't to begin with), as if lit from within. There's no telling who will have this capacity and who won't. It seems to be like tongue-rolling or finger-clicking - you can do it or you just can't.

13Side-on Looks - that phenomenon by which someone can be very handsome in profile but somewhat frightening face-on. Side-on looks are often encountered on train journeys, when you realise that the apparently dishy character you have been sneaking looks at across the aisle is not all they seem.

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