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A woman who cares about herself is more attractive?


Miss M
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That's what a guy told me yesterday (I'll call him J). J said when a woman gives indications that she cares about herself, he finds her MUCH more attractive. He and I were talking about this because he was flirting with me, and specifically mentioned that he liked my outfit, my toenail polish, etc. I dress modestly and comfortably, so my outfit wasn't elaborate, and not sexy, or eye-catching (at least not to me), but he said he specifically liked the ruffles and flowery embroidery on a girly top I was wearing. (And wow, the hot pink toenail polish was driving him totally batty. J said the "girly" stuff is seriously a turn-on for him. I never ever feel "sexy," and I don't choose my clothes to be sexually provocative (in fact, usually it's just the opposite). And I polish my toenails strictly because I like how it looks (pretty) and not to seduce men. Well guys aren't usually so forthcoming about the reasons they are flirting with me, so I found all this interesting. J is married, so the flirting was pointless from my point of view, but since he had brought it up, I asked him more about the things he was mentioning.

 

We talked a lot about "girly" clothes, makeup, manicures and pedicures, ankle bracelets, earrings, cologne, and why some guys respond appreciatively to those things. J said he likes it when women have on a little lipstick, fingernail and toenail polish, a few ornaments of jewelry, ruffles and lace, because all that indicates that she values herself, likes herself, and cares enough about herself to primp up a little. But he stressed that dressing up so the guys will like it shouldn't really be the goal... he said that women should just do it for themselves, just because they enjoy being frilly and girly... and that's when it's a total turn-on for him.

 

All this rang true because I went through prolonged difficult period where I wore absolute no jewelry or frilly stuff. Then one day I polished my toenails, put on some sparkly earrings, ankle bracelets (on both ankles), a ruffled skirt, spritzed cologne, and wow, I could immediately see the difference. Well, the guys weren't suddenly propositioning me, but I just noticed they were looking at me a lot more, a lot longer, sneaking a second peek, and lingering downwind.

 

Of course I also know there are some guys who are specifically attracted to women who do NOT care about themselves, women who don't feel valuable and worthy. And I know there are definitely some guys who don't like women who primp. Numerous guys have told me that manicures, pedicures, makeup are a ridiculous waste of time and money, and it makes a girl seem stuck on herself, or it makes it seems as if she does NOT accept herself. (Actually it's downright weird how these same things can get totally opposite responses from guys. And I really think some guys resent it when a woman focuses any amount of attention on herself at all because some guys want all her attention to be put on the guy. (Unfortunately I've had a few too many boyfriends who complained just because I took some time out to polish my nails. But this conversation with J was interesting to me because he told me, yes, put on the lipstick, and yes, absolutely get my fingernails done so they can look as nice as my toes... and yes there are some guys who seriously delight in that.

 

And oh, J said the sight of a woman polishing her toenails is damned sexy. I was like "huh???" ... And now I'm thinking that, yeah, I must really have been hanging out with the wrong guys, because I've actually gotten yelled at many times for polishing my toenails.

 

Any thoughts?

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I like to see women enjoy certain luxuries for themselves like jewelry and clothes unless it's all-consuming. A lady with a cool toe-ring or really fine earrings can be dressed in sloppy clothes, but the jewelry tells me she likes good stuff too, and takes pride in herself. Nail polish turns me on.

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Ah yes, he also mentioned a "toe ring" several times. (Actually I'm convinced J has a serious foot or toe fetish... I kept having this strong urge to tuck my hot pink toes out of sight under my long skirt.

 

But anyway, the funny thing... on the way home, I stopped to pick up a do-it-youself manicure set. I really had to laugh at myself because I haven't had a manicure (on my fingers) in more than 15 years. Really weird how this guy (that I just recently met) had talked me into doing a manicure, wearing fingernail polish. Yeah, somehow he convinced me to "improve" myself to get attention from the guys, but he did it all in a way that was flattering, wasn't critical, and didn't make me feel ugly or inadequate. I pointedly told him he should not have been propositioning and flirting with me while he was married, but I have to give him points for knowing how to encourage a woman to make some "improvements," while doing so in a charming and flattering way.

 

(And wow, I really regret spending so much time around angry men who have such a general contempt for women. I just never knew... )

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I may be in the minority here, but unless a woman is a real sloth or a serious narcissist I tend to look past the wardrobe and accoutrements at the person underneath. You can paint stripes on a horse, but that doesn't make it a zebra.

 

Is a woman draping herself in lavish adornments showing that she cares about who she is, or is she trying to compensate for a perceived shortcoming? Answer: it could go either way, so to me it don't mean a thing.

 

i find it attractive for a woman to care about who she is, yes. External manifestations of that fact, however, vary from person to person. Some shun makeup and jewelry because they are comfortable with themselves as-is, while others find it a well-deserved treat to throw on a little bling and foofoo.

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There are few guys that dont appreciate it when a lady takes the time to really do up her make up, nails, hair etc. Men always complain about women taking for ever but when she gets out of that bathroom or wherever, the first reaction is a slack jawed one or a "wow! you look amazing". Humans are visual creatures, they are mostly simulated by sight thats most human beings but this is no fact however so I may be wrong.

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I think it's really nice how you were getting complimented for things you had chosen to do for yourself before any man even commented on it.

 

Hey, if it makes you feel good to give yourself a manicure and dress up a little bit 'girlier' - go for it!

 

All the better, 'cause yes, I have noticed that men pay more attention when I put that extra effort into my appearance. It's actually amazing and shocking - still - the difference in how one is treated bc of some make-up, or nail polish, or nice clothes.

 

That said: I like it how there are men who like the natural look too, 'cause I'm a more "If I could wear a swim suit and sandals every day, I would!" bare bones type of gal.

Nail polish that is coloured is for fancy days. lol.

 

Enjoy yourself, Miss M, you certain deserve it.

 

p.s. French manicure is my favorite...what are you going for with your manicure this time?

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There are few guys that dont appreciate it when a lady takes the time to really do up her make up, nails, hair etc. Men always complain about women taking for ever but when she gets out of that bathroom or wherever, the first reaction is a slack jawed one or a "wow! you look amazing". Humans are visual creatures, they are mostly simulated by sight thats most human beings but this is no fact however so I may be wrong.

 

I am soooo dating the wrong men!

 

I've dated several guys that didn't seem to care about the effort I make. I always have toenail polish, earrings, necklace, bracelet, and usually wear something "girly." I never leave the house without lip gloss and mascara.

 

yeah, all those relationships failed....

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Thanks all, for your comments and feedback. It's all appreciated. I'm usually/naturally into the girly stuff, (no, not "lavish" by any description) and I just seem to be drifting back to it after a prolonged difficult period of dowdiness. And I've usually done this primping just for myself, simply because it's fun, and not ever for any guy. Like I said, most of the guys I knew complained about it, so obviously it was never for them. I just ignored them because I wasn't doing it for them. I just found J's comments interesting because I really never knew there were any guys who also really like it. I feel like "why didn't anybody ever tell me this before???" So... if I'm naturally a girly girl, maybe I should opt for a guy who enjoys it that I'm that way? Well, that was a real "light bulb" moment for me. I just hadn't ever considered that before. Just thinking... I could have been having much more fun, instead of getting criticized, scoffed at, yelled at, bleh.

 

p.s. French manicure is my favorite...what are you going for with your manicure this time?

Well, the french manicure seems the most prevalent thing, so I bought that kit, but also bought more nail polish, cause I do have a thing for "pink." So yeah, it might just end up getting painted over... we'll see. And thanks hon, for your good wishes. I do appreciate that.

 

Annie, your comments made me LOL, and too familiar. Yeah, we both probably need to reconsider the kinds of guys we date, ha!

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Okay, so I've suddenly gone from nubby little pitiful looking nails to instant elegance. Ah, this is fun. \\ ... And just think, all for less than 6 bucks... (yeah I'm cheap )... although I almost permanently glued my fingers together several times. ... Yep we do-it-yourselfers are brave souls, but we do take lots of risks.

 

So now I'm trying to resist the urge to paint them, at least for a couple of days... And oh my, I have to learn how to type again. LOL

 

And hey, the first guy who takes notice (favorably) gets a great big warm... smile.

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does that mean when all the guys I did meet were telling me they liked my nails, they were hitting on me????

Ya see, that's why he's only getting a "smile"... 'cause guys are always telling me(us) exactly what they think I(we) wanna hear. Compliments?... bleh... those are often totally meaningless, or a ploy. And hey, that's just another reason to primp only for yourself.

 

A do-it-yourselfer? Now, that is definitely attractive.

Heyyy... is that a compliment??? ... Um, I might need to reconsider... I think I do like it after all.

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I don't think caring about oneself is necesarily reflected by makeup or feminine clothes. For example, when I go to the gym, I end up completely, well, drenched - my hair is typically up in a messy bun, etc. That however is one way I take care of my body. Also, I read to children who live at a homeless shelter about once a week - that is how I take care of my soul. I try to do some intelligent reading almost every day and I keep up with current events - how I care for my mind.

 

I definitely believe in being clean, my hair in a flattering style and wearing flattering well-made clothes, accesories and jewelry appropriate for the occasion - and yes, some makeup, etc. But what I think my boyfriend appreciates even more is how I take care of myself in the ways I described. I know plenty of women who get manicures, are into accessorizing, etc - they are admirable for looking put together but I'm not sure that's how I would define taking care of oneself. I wouldn't want a man to focus on those things in me as impressive in how I take care of myself. Those things are fairly easy to do or pay money to get done for you. If a man focused on that too much I'd feel like a barbie doll.

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What I wonder from the OP is whether the guy in question would be ok with a woman who did herself up as described but was a chain smoker and/or heavy drinker, or who was thin and "looked" good but was bulimic. The guy in question seemed to focus on shallow attributes of "looking good" - reminded me of a guy who used to critique my outfits whenever we went out - because of that and a few other things I believe we had five dates tops.

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I don't think caring about oneself is necesarily reflected by makeup or feminine clothes.

Sure, that certainly possible... but it's also certainly possible that all the ways you said you take care of yourself aren't necessarily indications that you really do. For example, some people go to the gym as a way to self-torture, because they hate themselves. Some do charitable work (e.g. reading to children at a homeless shelter) as an escape from the fact that they can't nurture themselves, or so they can feel superior to those at the homeless shelter. Some people read intelligent literature as a way to convince themselves they aren't really as inferior as they feel inside. Some people even post so-called "helpful" advice on this board, trying to convince themselves they're actually helping, when they really are just trying to overcome their feelings of inferiority and inadequacy by trying to feel superior to others. So, any activity at all, no matter how seemingly noble, or healthy, or charitable, or self-nurturing, can be viewed as taking care of oneself, or it can really be a crutch or a cover-up, for something else. It really just depends on the underlying motives of the individual.

 

What I wonder from the OP is whether the guy in question would be ok with a woman who did herself up as described but was a chain smoker and/or heavy drinker, or who was thin and "looked" good but was bulimic. The guy in question seemed to focus on shallow attributes of "looking good" - reminded me of a guy who used to critique my outfits whenever we went out - because of that and a few other things I believe we had five dates tops.

Well, we didn't get far enough into the conversation for me to make inquiries about whether he would accept a dolled-up chainsmoker/heavy drinker, bulimic. Besides cheating on his wife, he seemed like a very sincere and caring person. What I wrote in the OP is simply how I perceived our conversation in the way it genuinely seemed to me. Of course you can doubt it, second-guess it, question it, if that's your inclination, but I probably won't be inclined to try to convince you of something that you already regard as suspect. I guess you just had to be there. I started this thread to get other's thoughts on this topic, but not to debate, or to defend, or substantiate my perceptions of this encounter.

 

[Ah, I'm starting to get the hang of typing after all. ]

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... reminded me of a guy who used to critique my outfits whenever we went out...

I already mentioned this (but maybe you missed it?) I've also been "critiqued" in that way by guys, but with J I didn't feel "critiqued"... I felt appreciated. (There's a subtle difference, but like I said, you probably had to be there.) So I thanked J for offering me a new perspective, but I also told him new ways to go back home and "appreciate" his wife, to which he seemed very agreeable, even grateful.

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That's interesting - didn't realize you were having this discussion with a married man.

 

Yes, of course you can read negatives into working out 3 times a week, reading to homeless children and keeping up with current events - just like you can read negatives into anything. To me, those things are far more of an indication of caring for oneself than being able to apply makeup and wear the latest feminine fashions. But that's just me.

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That's interesting - didn't realize you were having this discussion with a married man.

It's in the last sentence of the first paragraph of the original post...

Thus... "J is married, so the flirting was pointless from my point of view..."...

And btw, I do appreciate it when someone who responds to my post in a critical/skeptical/judgmental way has at least taken the time to read ALL of it.

 

Yes, of course you can read negatives into working out 3 times a week, reading to homeless children and keeping up with current events - just like you can read negatives into anything. To me, those things are far more of an indication of caring for oneself than being able to apply makeup and wear the latest feminine fashions. But that's just me.

I'm getting the idea that you don't like it when someone unjustly reads negatives into your behaviors where there are none? Well guess what... I'm exactly the same as you in that way. I'd ask you to be understanding and considerate enough to please stop doing that in my threads.

 

Otherwise, whether you disapprove of how I care for myself is not really the point as far as I'm concerned. And I'd also like you not to make this into a competition of who does the most noble and/or admirable and/or legitimate self-caring behaviors.

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I'm happy for you, Miss M.

From my point of view, for you, this isn't just about having pretty nails or getting compliments.

This is a TRIUMPH of Miss M in asserting her real self and being PROUD of who she is.

And, in the process, seeing there are plenty of people who delight in you when you are letting your colours shine.

 

You've come a long way from the earlier posts I remember reading from you.

I think it is fantastic, and it makes me beam.

 

Glue on nails, eh? Hehe. A friend of mine beat a strong nail-biting habit a while back. It was so cute and funny to see her tappity-tapping her new 'long' nails and discovering the 'oh god, this feels weird, i have to accomdate the nails' factor.

 

Oh btw: you've inspired me to splurge on a little treat for myself....way to get my girly side going, Miss M.

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