Some great news: we as a society no longer have to endlessly strive for unattainable perfection. Get. IN!
But seriously, heavily edited magazine covers, Instagram pages and the omnipresence of immaculately-chiselled movie stars on our TV screens can really get you down if you let them. The reality is that those perceived “flaws” that you convince yourself are holding you back from achieving that 10/10 ideal self status don’t actually exist. Essentially: you’re fucking great, Hercules doppelgänger or not, and you need to realise it.
We’re not just talking physical appearance here. You, a slightly awkward man, might have wondered that your nervousness around people has a knock-on effect on your sex appeal. Again, forget it.
Don’t take our word for it, though. Rather, let’s consult the self-proclaimed “front page of the internet”, Reddit, shall we. In a recent post to the site, users were asked “what society-deemed ‘flaw’ do you find attractive?”
“I'm turned on by self doubt. There ya go,” was an early comment. “A little shyness can sometimes be endearing,” said another. A lot of people, male and female concurred. Another read: “If a girl is awkward and socially inept that makes me feel more comfortable about being awkward and socially inept.” Makes sense.
It wasn’t just endearingly clumsy conversation-starters getting these Redditors hot under the collar, though. Oh no. Want to know what else people are into? Prominent noses; pointy ears; big foreheads; conservative clothing (“Turtlenecks fuck me up”); girls with messy, uneven hair; lisps; glasses; really small people; really tall people; small boobs; pale skin; guys who finish quickly; women who are bang into woodworking (who the fuck thinks that is a flaw?). Just a few examples there.
One of the most popular and frankly lovely comments came from a guy discussing his attraction to scars. “I had a crush on a girl in university with a scar on her face that looked like someone sliced her from the edge of her lip to her chin,” he wrote. “One day I asked her how she got her scar. She was a very confident, athletic girl but when I asked her she immediately acted shy and self-conscious. I was so enamoured by her scar, I completely forgot that others might not see it that way. I was taken aback by her reaction.
She got the scar from a stove accident when she was three and had been teased about it most of her life. When I told her it didn't cross my mind that anyone wouldn't see it as beautiful, her face lit up with the brightest smile.”
A lot of the female commenters said they found outwardly emotional men alluring, and there was a whole lot of love for the humble Dad bod.
Carving yourself a six pack probably isn’t going to do you any harm in the romance stakes, but the I-may-as-well-sleep-in-the-gym look doesn’t do it for everyone. “I would take someone who is bigger over someone who is skinny or all muscle,” one woman said. “My boyfriend still doesn't think I'm truly attracted to his body because he doesn't think girls are attracted to dad bods.”
Annoyingly, I didn’t see any comments about people particularly digging one ear that noticeably sticks out more than the other one. Not that I have one of those or anything. Just, you know, would have been nice.