Your Looks Aren't the Problem

(NOW: You can read Dategirl every day on the Daily Weekly!)     Dear Dategirl, How can I tell if I'm physically unattractive? The guy I've been hanging/making out with lately told me he thinks we should just be "really good friends," because "I'm so cool." This wouldn't be a big deal, except that the last guy I hooked up with wants to be just friends too. These guys always make sure to tell me how cool, smart, nice, and talented I am. These are things I'm already confident about, but I try to look nice too, and nobody's going out of their way to compliment me on that. My parents and friends tell me I'm beautiful, but I think they might be a little biased. My friends think my problem is that I'm too nice or intimidating, but I'm not sure I believe them. I guess I've always known I'm not drop-dead gorgeous, but I always figured that people's tastes varied enough that there'd be someone out there for me. Is that wrong? Should I be assessing where I fall on a scale of 1–10, and then seek people who correspond to my rating? That sounds super-crazy and unromantic to me, but I'm 23 years old, a healthy weight, and try to look as nice as I can—but I've only had sex once in the past year. What's wrong with me? —I Give Up? No, you should definitely not assess where you fall on a scale of 1–10! Your problem isn't your looks; it's that you're relying on other people (and 23-year-old boys at that) for validation. I have no idea what you look like, but if you were incredibly ugly or breathtakingly beautiful, you'd definitely know it by now. Alas, most of us fall into the vast spectrum between ugly and gorgeous called "average," of which there are varying degrees. Besides the body benefits, working out will present new man-meeting opportunities and activate your endorphins. Pay for a pro to shape your eyebrows. I realize this sounds idiotic, but eyebrows frame the face, and the right frame can make a huge difference. Make sure your clothes fit both your size and your personality—just because it's on trend doesn't mean it should necessarily be on you. And don't ever leave the house in sweats, unless you're on your way to work out or have decided to embrace celibacy. Women always tell each other we're single because men are intimidated, but Madonna is possibly the scariest woman on the planet, and she doesn't seem to be having any trouble getting laid. They might have a point with the "nice" stuff, though, especially since you have so many of these make-out "friends." A good rule is to avoid becoming "friends" with anyone you're wildly attracted to. I always fell into the trap of overcompensating with men I was hot for. This is embarrassing to admit, but I'd do favors, pay for dates, and paint myself as the "cool" girl who was fine with making out one night and listening to their girl problems the next. Don't be that girl. As much as it reeks of game-playing, men need a little mystery as much as they need a bit of a challenge. When you just put it out there, they tend to lose interest. I'm not saying you should turn into a cockteasing little turd, just hold back a little, whether we're talking about your life story or your ass. Whatever you do, don't ask a guy if he thinks you're pretty—just assume everyone does. Confidence is far more attractive than a perfectly symmetrical face. Most of all, don't settle for scraps of affection when you're looking for the whole book.

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