As in the Disney movie Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, the evil queen is obsessed with being the fairest, or most beautiful, woman in all the land. The word beauty, by definition, is the quality present in a thing or person that gives intense pleasure or deep satisfaction to the mind, whether from sensory manifestation, a meaningful design, or something else such as personality. But what is beautiful to me may not evoke the same response or feeling from you. How is the queen to know she is the fairest in everyone’s eye if not everyone holds the same definition of beautiful?
Why is it that we are attracted to some people and not attracted to others? The well-known phrase, “beauty is in the eye of the beholder” may hold some truth. Perception dictates how we view everything. People’s views are gained through experience and the environment in which they live. With that being said, our ideal depiction of beauty may slightly differ because no two people experience the same things in life, but aspects as to what people find attractive overlap. These overlapping qualities can be grouped into categories, which include the influence of personality, facial beauty, and body beauty and how it’s changing with society.
Both males and females, at some level or another, are concerned with how they look to others. Typically, females are more preoccupied with the idea of looking beautiful. Don’t misinterpret what I’m saying; males care about what they look like as well, but generally not to the extent of that of females. This paper will focus on the perceptions people have on beauty as it pertains to women.
Influence of Personality on the Perception of Beauty
A study was conducted in which a group of researchers wanted to examine if the influence of personality affected the ratings of physical attractiveness of women’s body sizes (Swami, Furnham, Chamorro-Premuzic, Akbar, Gordon, Harris Finch & Tovee, 2010). Contrary to the notion that “beauty is but skin deep”, the researchers believe that beauty is multi-faceted and should include variables of dynamic attractiveness; personality.
This study was conducted in Greater London, which may reveal different results than if it had been conducted in the United States. The experiment included females of different body sizes ranging from emaciated to obese and personality information (some positive, some negative, and some weren’t given personality traits) about the women which were given to male participants who would act as judges. The results showed there was no significant difference between the groups as to which body size the judges found most attractive. Meaning they all found a certain body type to be most attractive. But the judges that were given positive personality information about the women had a wider range of body sizes that they found attractive and the judges that were given negative personality information found a narrower range of body sizes to be attractive (Swami, et. al., 2010). This hints at...