IS BEAUTY? WHY
HAVE PLASTIC SURGERY?
THE SCIENCE AND EVOLUTION OF BEAUTY. WHY IS IT IMPORTANT?
"Turning a cold eye to beauty is similar to responding
with indifference to a baby's cry."
"Our sense of fashion is not the same as our sense of
beauty. " Fashion is "amusing and enticing, appetizing,
icing on the divine cake." "Not the cake itself." Nancy
What is beauty? "I cannot define it, but I know it when
it walks into a room." Aaron Spelling.
Beautiful people have imperfections. And it is precisely their
beauty that throws their "flaws" into bold relief. Strikingly
beautiful faces have minor deviations from "perfection."
"Trivialities make perfection, but perfection is not trivial."
Beauty is clarity, symmetry, harmony, and vivid color all wrapped
is geometric form and balance." St. Augustine.
"Beauty is order, symmetry, and definition." Aristotle.
Beauty is made up of an eternal invariable element and a relative
circumstantial element. The latter is defined by the age, its fashions,
its morals, and its emotions.
I defy anyone to point to a single scrap of beauty that does
not contain these two elements. That is, an "eternal invariable
element and a relative circumstantial element." Charles Baudeliane.
Beauty provokes pleasure, rivets attention, and impales actions
that help insure the survival of our genes.
Beauty influences our perceptions, attitudes, and behavior
Looking good has survival value.
From infancy to adulthood, beautiful people are treated preferentially
and viewed more positively.
Beautiful people find sexual partners more easily, are more
likely to find leniency in the Courts and elicit cooperation from
Beauty conveys modest, but real social and economic advantages,
and, equally important, ugliness leads to major social disadvantages
Research suggests that while average is attractive, the most
beautiful faces are not average, but have features that deviate from
average in a small number of predictable ways.
We see frequent fashion shifts and crazes despite their instability
and our constant cravings. Fashions change but they never get more
"Beauty is a greater recommendation than any letter of
It is ones' eyes that express the nuances of ones' feelings.
The differences in facial bone structure around the eyes is one of
the most enduring parts of our visual signature and is as unique as
The eyes and periorbital regions are the windows to the soul,
and the gateway to communication. Communicating attentiveness, intent
and state of mind.
The mouth and perioral region expresses the emotional state,
conveying happiness, unhappiness, satisfaction, and dissatisfaction.
Babies teach us that response to physical beauty is automatic
and irresistible and it starts early and runs deep.
Appearance and reality. "Lookism" is one of the most
pervasive but denied of all prejudices in the United States today.
"There is no excellent beauty that hath not some strangeness
in proportion." Frances Bacon.
"A thing of beauty is a joy forever." John Keats.
"Beauty is the flower of virtue." Plutarch.
"Perfection has no limits." Jonathan Livingston Seagull
"I like style - I don't like fashion. Fashion disappears.
Style remains." Yves St. Laurent
"A difference to be a difference must make a difference."
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©Copyright 2001, Dr. John M. Shamoun, M.D. All rights reserved.