Does Beauty Beat Beast for Marriage?
Matchmakers are commonly asked, "What does he do?" and "What does she look like?" In short, females have tendency to focus on a male's occupation, and males are generally more concerned with a woman's appearance.
By James Lee
The natural assumption that can be drawn from this is that physically attractive women have a better chance of getting married. But does that mean ``physically unattractive'' women have more difficulty getting married? Does physical appearance really play a key role in a woman's ability to wed?
To determine the correlation, if there is any, between a woman's level of physical attractiveness and the chances of her getting married, we conducted a research survey on 1,340 women who have married within the past ten years.
The subjects were categorized into four groups: very attractive, attractive, normal/average, and not attractive. Then the women were asked how many blind dates they had gone on before marrying their husbands.
If the assumption that attractive women have it "easier" than less attractive women were true, there would have been a difference in the number of blind dates. However, our research showed that the women went on approximately the same number of blind dates before getting married, regardless of their level of physical attractiveness. The theory that attractive females have a better chance of getting married was not supported by the data.
According to this research, a woman's physical appearance is not the determining factor in getting married. The results of the research indicate that factors other than physical attractiveness are involved and play a significant role in men's decision to get married.
Over my past 20 years of working in the matchmaking business, I have observed that physical attractiveness does play an important role in the initial stages of a relationship. However, there are many other factors, such as personality and values that must be taken into account to sustain a healthy long-term relationship. Internal rather than external traits will have a larger effect on the stability of a marriage.
For example, there was a man who married a beauty pageant contestant. While the two were dating he treated her like a goddess. He would spend months deciding what to buy her and he never hesitated to spend lavishly on her. Do you think he was still infatuated with her after marriage? Definitely not.
Only two months into the marriage the couple had a big fight. During the argument the man saw his wife's face filled with anger, and his image of her was shattered. He regretted being so foolish for marrying his wife solely based on her beauty.
It is true that physically attractive women receive more attention from men than less attractive women. However, the attention those physically attractive women get are simply infatuation. When searching for suitable wives, many men actually prefer average-looking women with great personalities over physically attractive women that are superficial or have other undesirable characteristics.
As an example, a woman that was in the "not attractive" subject group of the research study stated that she would receive many requests for second dates; apparently, her personality was very attractive to the men.
To apply the results of the research in a practical way, you shouldn't let insecurities about your appearance affect how you interact with other people. Moreover, you can compensate for any perceived external flaws in many other ways, so try not to let a negative self-image mentally defeat you, especially in the dating process. Often, our beliefs about ourselves turn into self-fulfilling prophecies, so we should be careful about comparing ourselves to others and remember that many individuals view a positive attitude and a charming personality as more attractive than any physical attribute.
James Lee is CEO of Sunoo, one of Korea’s largest marriage matchmaking companies, which has arranged 20,000 successful marriages since its foundation in 1991. Lee is working to globalize his business through www.couple.net to introduce Korea’s unique matchmaking model around the world.