Why is skinny considered beautiful

By M.Farouk Radwan, MSc.

How beauty standards are shaped

When i talked about the psychology of attraction in many of my articles i said that there are two types of qualities that humans find attractive.

The first type of qualities are the ones that are already built-in inside our brains. The preference for that group of qualities is already present inside the brain of every human before they become fully conscious. A perfect example of those qualities would be facial symmetry. See Physical attraction psychology

No matter where a person lives or where they come from they will still find a symmetrical face more attractive than a face with less symmetry. This has nothing to do with race or ethnic background. No matter what a person's race is they will still be considered more attractive if they had highly symmetrical facial features. See Why do we find some people attractive.

The other group of qualities are learned qualities that are affected by our culture , our society, the media and our friends. In other words a person or a group of people could be programmed to believe that a certain quality is attractive until they develop that belief.

And just as you may have already guessed a perfect example of those learned qualities is the quality of being skinny.

Why is skinny considered beautiful

In The psychology of physical attraction guide i said that being skinny wasn't considered an attractive quality long ago. You can easily verify that by checking out how top models used to look like few decades ago.

You will quickly realize that curvy women were considered more attractive. The logic behind that is simple. Long ago food was scarce and as a result being skinny was a sign that you don't have enough food. The opposite of course was considered true and this is why curvy women or even obese ones were considered more attractive. See also Attractiveness and culture.

This is why in some isolated tribes you might still find that obesity is the attractive quality where as being skinny is the repulsive one. Nowadays as food became scarce the opposite has became true.

People have learned to associate many negative qualities with obesity such as lack of self control, laziness and poor self regulation. In other words as the cultural beliefs changed the attractiveness preferences of people changed. See also Does being obese affect your self esteem

The only thing that remained constant through out the years is the waist to hip ratio for women. The ideal waist to hip ratio for women was always 0.8 and it will always remain the same because it's one of the qualities that are hard coded in the brain. This is why men find women with an hour glass body shape attractive.

Your self esteem will depend on your beliefs

In the Ultimate guide to becoming confident i said that your self esteem depends more on your beliefs than anything else.

If you think that it's a good thing to not be skinny then you will still feel confident and no further action will be required. If however you believe that being obese makes you less attractive then you will hardly feel confident or attractive before you lose weight.

In short do the actions that your belief system implies and you will be a confident person.

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