A few years ago, I was your typical office-worker: stressed out, uneven energy, overweight, and inconsistent complexion. Now I'm just your typical 28-year old urban hunter-gatherer on a quest to be healthy, and having a few adventures along the way. See my full bio.
The Glow: the attractiveness of healthy skin
I was talking with one of my roommates about women last year (as we do), and he pointed out that nice skin is an often over-looked, but incredibly attractive quality. I completely agree -- skin quality is an under-appreciated indicator of good health.
Women know it, which is why they use make-up and eye-liner to trick men into thinking that they're younger and healthier than they actually are. Men, you need to learn how to see past these deceptions and assess her true youth and health.
The larger problem is that as a culture, we've grown accustomed to people with somewhat splotchy, broken-out, heavily made up skin. And if a girl does have nice skin, it's assumed to be genetic. Maybe she's born with it. Maybe it's Maybelline. But are those the only two paths to healthy skin? Genetics or make-up?
Of course not.
There's a third alternative: she takes care of her health. People with nice skin have that "glow". It's where you look at them and think, "She fertile. Make babies. Talk her. Get number."
As for examples, it's hard to find pictures of women online who 1) have good skin, 2) aren't wearing tons of make-up, and 3) aren't airbrushed. So I've chosen a couple pictures of Denise Minger over at Raw Food SOS. I don't know if she's wearing any make-up in these pictures, but I remember seeing her in person and thinking that she had the glow.
My friend Aleta is another person with beautiful skin, though she didn't used to. She's of an older generation than I am. I don't have a picture of her, but she looks 10 years younger than she actually is. She eats a super high fat paleo diet (and has leaned out the more fat she eats). She is aging beautifully. I mean that. If I were her husband, I would be a very happy man.
I sometimes get the "glow". When I went on Colbert two years ago, they sent me to the make-up chair, and the lady said, "Oh, you have such nice skin, I don't even need to do anything for you." She only put a bit of powder (or something) on my forehead to make sure there wasn't any glare.
I lose the glow too, depending on my lifestyle. Recently, I haven't been sleeping enough or working out enough.
My skin always feels amazing while I'm fasting. I can touch my face with my fingers -- something you're not supposed to do, according to the conventional wisdom -- but I can feel that I'm not going to break out from it. If you have unhealthy, weak skin, it probably doesn't help to touch your face. But if touching healthy skin with your hands caused break-outs, then skin quality wouldn't be a very strong indicator of good health. It would be an indicator that you didn't touch your face.
Men, just to be perfectly clear: you want to wake up next to a woman who looks great without make-up (and knock-out with it), and who, as she ages, looks ten years younger than she actually is. So look for a woman who cares enough about her health that she ends up with the glow. (And if she cares about health, that probably means you should too.)
Thanks to ADR for the thought.