The argument about looks is always a hot topic in the pick up community. Some gurus claim that looks are totally unimportant and others say that they are vital. So what do you do if you are not good looking? Should you spend thousands on plastic surgery or accept yourself for who you are? Do your looks really affect your inner game and what can you actually do to change your image?
I have worked with a massive amount of guys when it comes to dealing with inner game and practically all of them had some sort of hang up when it came to their looks. Even guys who are remarkably good looking will have some sort of issue that will stop them approaching girls. Just because you are good looking does not mean you have automatic confidence and/or skills with women.
The main areas that men have concerns about their looks tend to fall into one of these 7 categories;
Teeth – crooked, chipped, stained and missing
Hair – colour, receding/baldness and poor style
Skin – acne scars, shaving rash, birthmarks, scaring and stretch marks
Weight – being overweight and underweight
Height – being too tall or too short
Unattractive features – big nose or just generally not very facially attractive
Dress sense – being unstylish or just dressing inappropriately
I was on skype with an American friend yesterday who has just visited the UK on holiday. He asked me “what is the deal with your teeth in England?” Compared to American we generally focus less on our teeth, however it is being much more common to have work done to improve your smile. So is having a Hollywood smile import for your confidence?
Read any pick up material and it will not belong until you come across the importance of smiling. Those who smile a lot tend to do better with not just women but people in general. If you have a great set of teeth and a nice smile then you are extremely lucky, as most of us have some hang up with our teeth that often prevents us from showing them too often. Think about it like this, if you had great teeth would you smile more? If smiling more improves our game, and if this is dependant on the state of our teeth, then I think it is something worth taking seriously.
The good news is that now there is a range of dental procedures that can dramatically improve your smile. Up until the age of 17 I had horrible teeth, they were small, crooked and several never came through. I was always conscious of my teeth and I always stopped myself from showing them when I smiled. I constantly thought about my teeth and this seriously affected my confidence. Fortunately I had veneers and bridges done on the NHS which transformed my smile completely. Since having the work done I smile a lot more and my confidence rocketed.
Although my dental work was extensive, the pain was eventually worth it. When I had the work done (over 10 years ago) I had little idea about what they were going to actually do and the effect it would have. The work I had was not just cosmetic but also functional, therefore I was given it on the NHS otherwise it would have cost thousands.
My dental work was extreme but I did need it doing. Most clients I see are concerned because they have slightly crooked teeth or that they are discoloured. I would advise to invest in your smile but this does not mean spending thousands on implants and veneers. Often just having your teeth professional cleaned or even whitened can have a dramatic affect on your confidence. When you smile and are proud to show your teeth it defiantly improves your confidence.
When it comes to your teeth and smiling, you do not need to have a dazzling bright white smile, just the ability to smile without feeling self conscious. If you have stained teeth, get them cleaned. If you have crooked teeth then it is worth speaking to your dentist to see if you can improve them, there are a lot of procedures now available. If you have nice teeth then you are very lucky, just make sure you take care of them.
Traditionally, men associate hair with masculinity, virility and attractiveness. Losing your hair can cause massive amount of stress and is often ranked highly in our greatest fears. More and more men are turning to cosmetic procedures such as hair plugs and transplants. Of course there are still the more traditional methods that include the trusty comb over, wigs, wearing a hat or growing it long at the back while having a bald patch. Not surprisingly most methods with dealing with hair loss are very obviously and rather unsuccessful.
When it comes to hair loss I am somewhat of an expert. I have always had really thin and crap hair! My hair started thin and gradually got worse, from about the age of 10(yes, aged 10). At school I was not allowed to shave my head, nor would my parents let me. So for my school years I had to put up with having very thin and embarrassing hair that singled me out and made me very self conscious. I remember at school a girl who I really liked asking me if I had cancer! This actually happened and it was not a one off.
As soon as I went to university I have my hair shaved off to grade 2. For the first time in my life my hair was not an issue. It suited me being short and it was actually an even covering so I did not have a bald patch or anything to deal with. This worked well for me for a few years, but then I noticed it was starting to go thinner on top and even when it was a few millimeters long you could see a definite horseshoe.
The first time I shaved my head with a razor was an interesting experience to say the least. When I first looked in the mirror and stroked my newly smooth head I thought I had made a massive mistake. It therefore was a big surprise to me when I actually started to get complements about my hair (or absence of it to be precise). I now shave my hair with a razor 2-3 times a week to maintain my cue ball like head. I also use a bit of daily self tan to give my scalp a bit of colour so I don’t stand out like a light bulb!
Hair is extremely important to men and we will do anything to keep hold of it, regardless of pain and cost. I have seen lots of guys with hair plugs who look awful and fake. Trust me, girls pick up on things like this right away.
My advice is to be self accepting when it comes to hair and do not try to battle nature. If you have good thick hair (you lucky people) then make sure it is styled correctly. Instead of having the typical £8 short back and sides, actually invest a bit in your hair and have it done at a reputable salon. Ask girls for their advice (even use it as an opinion opener) and take a read of some fashion magazines to see what celebrities are sporting.
If your hair is thinning then I whole heartedly suggest that you resist trying to cover up the issue and just shave it off. If you have short hair and it is obvious you are going bald on top, then whip out the bic and go the whole hog. In my experience girls always prefer men with shaved or bald heads as opposed to those who are trying to cover up their hair loss with comb overs or plugs etc. Since I started using a razor for a comb, I now get girls opening me to stroke my head and I always get a lot of complements.
Losing your hair is not as bad as you think. Bite the bullet and do the right thing. Everyone knows you are going bald and it is a battle that you can not win! By shaving your head you actually regain control which will increase your natural confidence.
Having bad skin can seriously lower your self confidence. Remember being at school and having spots? How embarrassing was that. As we grow older we tend to have less acne issues (although some people do still suffer) and instead we have the scars that acne left behind and also other issues such as stretch marks.
When we feel self conscious about our bodies we want to hide them away from others, even our partners. Not wanting to get naked or being embarrassed about our bodies can cause a lot of issues ranging from approach anxiety through to sexual problems.
Another skin type of issue that we have to deal with is blushing. If there was a competition for blushing, I would win and probably set some kind of world record. I blush at everything and as I am naturally pale and completely bald, it is very obvious. Over the years I have been to see doctors, dermatologists and therapists to work on the problem, but nothing has ever solved the issue. It wasn’t until I realised that the only person who was bothered by it was me, that I finally let go of the issue and its hold over me diminished. Blushing is like hair loss, it is something I can’t control so instead of fighting it I simply embraced it.
I also suffered from another skin complaint, when I was young I was suffered severe sunburn leaving me with a lot of scaring all over my chest, shoulders and stomach. For years I would avoid taking my top off when on holiday and I even refused to go swimming with friends. When it came to more intimate situations, then it really became an issue and often I wanted to leave my shirt on. To deal with this I went to the doctor and he gave me a steroid cream that cleared up the 95% issue and improved my inner game no end. I could not believe that such a big issue for me was sorted out in just a couple of weeks.
If you have a skin complaint then these days there are options. Acne scars and stretch marks are the most common issues and can be dealt with the most. Instead of avoiding the issue and covering up, seek out professional help to see if you can improve your situation. If you can’t then you simply have to accept that you can not change and work on other areas of your life. Remember that women are a lot less focused on things like stretch marks than guys are. If you can do something then do it, if you can’t then let go of it. No one really cares about it apart from you.
When I work with guys, their weight or body shape is often an area of concern. I do believe that being healthy is important, however we really need to take a sensible approach to this. In the media we are constantly bombarded with heavenly bodies that sport perfect biceps and abs that you can great cheese on. The dieting industry is built on fantasy and projects a completely and totally unrealistic image of the human body. I have worked with some guys who are in amazing shape, yet because they put on a few pounds over Christmas they are extremely self conscious and their inner game is terrible.
Cases of male eating disorders are rising at an alarming rate. Cosmetic procedures such as lippo suction and gastric bands are increasing in popularity amongst men as we truly enter the age of the metrosexual. Men get obsessed with working out and going to the gym, starving themselves of food replacing it with protein shakes.
A very common misconception that men have is that once they get a good body, they will somehow magically be able to get girls. Just because you lose weight/gain muscle it might give you a little more confidence, but you will still be the same person underneath. Your personality is far more important than your body, often people simply want to paper over the cracks instead of dealing with the real problems.
We need to start getting realistic and sensible about our bodies and stop aiming for the totally unrealistic image we are sold by the various industries that capitalise on your misery. There will always be another product, another diet or pill that “guarantees to get you ripped within weeks”. Although I believe that girls are more attracted to guys who are in shape than guys who are overweight or really skinny, you do not have to be male model.
Having a good body is just part of your overall attractiveness. Girls are much less shallow than guys, they do not have a visual rating system, i.e. she’s a 8, like guys do and are much more turned on by your confidence and personality than just your 6 pack.
I knew a friend at uni who was about 6 stone overweight. He was a nasty piece of work and was not able to attract girls. He decided that the reason girls did not like him was his weight and chose to go on a massive diet. Over one summer holiday he spent several hours a day in the gym and literally starved himself, losing in total about 4 stone and really toning up. Image his dismay when he came back to uni and girls still didn’t like him. He was still a nasty piece of work, but now he just weighed less. He thought that once he was slim he would be happy, this is deemed to failure from the start.
My advice is to stop comparing yourself to others, especially those in magazines and in the media. It is important to be in good shape for health reasons, but do not let it dictate your happiness. I am currently overweight and I plan on losing about 2 stone. This is more for health reasons than anything, but most importantly I am doing it for myself. My size has never stopped me being with girls as I have worked hard on my interpersonal skills (or game I suppose), on my personality and lifestyle. Instead of trying to work out ways to lose weight, it is far more beneficial to work out why it is there in the first place.
Like hair, height is something that men are extremely self conscious about and give far too much meaning to. Height is the only category from the list above that I actually excel in and have not had to work on. I am 6’ 2” and very happy with it. I have always been tall so unlike all the other categories it is the only one where I can not sympathise or give personal experience from. It is my one saving grace :)
I have however worked with a lot of guys who are shorter than I and they let it damage their confidence. Height is like weight, we like to make it a scapegoat for our problems. You can not change how tall you are so it makes it easy for us to blame our height (or lack of it) rather than deal with the real problem, your personality!
A guy I knew a few years ago was about 5’ 8” and he said it was the one thing that held him back in life. He said if he was taller he would be more successful with girls and practically every other area. He believed it so much that he went for extensive surgery to have his legs broken and lengthened. The whole procedure cost him thousands of pounds, a hell of a lot of pain and months not being able to walk.
After the surgery and rehabilitation, the guy was a bit taller, however he was still the same person but now he had a limp. The only thing that really changed is that he thought he was more attractive and this change in mindset actually got him results. I personally believe he could have achieved this mindset without the painful surgery, it would have certainly been my first port of call if I were in the same situation. Although this procedure “worked” for him, I certainly would not recommend it to others.
If you are not the height you want to be then it can be frustrating. You do have options, leg lengthening surgery being one. Are women attracted to taller guys? Well the statistics say that they are. Does this mean that shorter guys can not get hot girls? Does it bollocks. Your height is not the issue, it is how you feel about it that is. If you are a shorter guy, then yes I admit it is a slight problem, but being annoyed and frustrated by it is not going to solve anything. Once again you need to accept the hand you are dealt and play the best you can.
Unattractive features is my nice way of saying ugly. Some people are born beautiful, some people are born with a face only their mothers can love. Life isn’t fair, deal with it. Again this is a category where I fall victim. OK I am not really ugly, but I would never consider myself to be good looking. This used to bother me a lot when I was younger, however I genuinely believe I am getting better looking as I get older. This is just to do with my face, but everything including my style, body language and personality.
If you have an unattractive feature, then you have two options; either do something about it or shut up! The worse things you can do is to make no attempt to change the issue, but instead constantly go on about it and making it your favourite excuse.
I was out with a friend the other day and he has quite a large nose. He always goes on about how it has held him back and he is very bitter about it. He constantly complains that it isn’t fair that he has such a big nose and that if he had a small nose then girls would find him much more attractive. I had to be straight with him, I said “dude your nose is the least of your worries. Your clothes are terrible (he was wearing trainers, old baggy jeans and a jumper with a sports slogan across it), you are going bald and trying to hide it, your finger nails are filthy, your teeth are stained and you are wearing some nasty aftershave. Worst of all you are often bitter and claim life isn’t fair, well it isn’t so get used to it. Now you have been banging on about your nose for the 3 years I have known you and done nothing about it. I know you can’t afford to have it fixed, so instead stop going on about it because no one cares. Sort the things out you have control over and stop making excuses”.
OK I did have quite a big go at him, but he has talked about his nose being the issue for a long time. His nose is not the issue, his personality is and the way he takes care of himself. If he nose was slightly smaller would he have been able to go and approach girls that night, nope. Having a big nose gives him an excuse not to approach, but no one cares. Your life is not what you think, feel or believe, it is what you do.
If you have a feature you really don’t like then having it fixed can improve your confidence. I know it certainly did with my teeth and skin. However, often you can not change the way you look and you have to accept that. If you fail to accept how you look then you will be bitter and have “why me” syndrome, which will repel people away from you faster than any facial feature.
Dress sense and style
The biggest thing we have control over when it comes to appearance is how you dress. I can not stress the importance of how being well dressed raises your confidence and the way other people perceive and treat you.
Being well dressed does not have to be expensive and I always see guys making the classic mistake of wearing branded clothes to try and show off. Yesterday I saw a guy wearing a D&G Jeans t-shirt. This doesn’t even make sense, wearing a t-shirt that is advertising jeans.
How you dress says a lot about you and it is the one area about how we look that we have the greatest control. I have never liked the idea of peacocking, just trying to stand out for the sake of it with gadgets and gismos. Dressing well is not about having attention because of wearing labels or flashing lights, it is about dressing to be attractive to the kinds of girls you like.
A private client came to my clinic last week and said that he was trying to meet classy girls. He was wearing trainers, baggy jeans and a humorous t-shirt. This guy was actually a dentist and was making over 50k a year, however he was dressed more like a student. He also paid little attention to his hair, but he was quite a good looking bloke.
People make snap judgements about you based on your style and body language. I have found that girls have a different rating system than men do. Men rate girls on a 1-10 scale whereas women tend to just have “yes” and “no” categories. Women pay much more attention to men when it comes to clothes as this says a lot about the person, wealth, status etc. When a man looks at a hot girl however, he will be focusing more on her body than what she is actually wearing.
The client I was working with said that he did not want to brag about his wealth and he wants girls to like him for him. I think this is crazy, he is trying to play himself down in some sort of “Coming to America” strategy. There is a big difference between trying too hard and showing off wealth (i.e. designer branded gear), and just taking care about how you look and investing in your wardrobe.
Our fashion stylist Ollie has an ebook available on his page and he also contributes to this blog. I thoroughly recommend checking his stuff out and learning about how to dress and become more attractive to girls.
Apart from how people judge you, how you dress has big psychological on yourself. When you look good you feel good, and when you feel good it is much easier to interact with people. When you know you are dressed well it does give you a certain sense of confidence and a swagger in your step. Remember that dressing well doesn’t mean you have to be outrageous, just that you have put a bit of time and effort into your look.
So are looks important for inner game? I say that they are as it improves how you feel about yourself and how others perceive you. More important is how you feel about your looks and if there is something you don’t like then can you do something about it? The quickest and easier things to change are your hair and clothes, just by doing this you will look completely different. Once you have nailed your style then you may find that other hang ups you had start to disappear.
I recommend spending time on how you look and present yourself. Regardless of what Mother Nature gave you, you play the hand you are dealt. Start to work on your weak areas i.e. fashion or weight, and just see how much this improves your confidence alone. If it something you have little control over i.e height, then I advise to seek some form of therapy to help you to accept yourself more. There is no use being bitter over an issue as this will only drive people away.
If you can fix something then fix it, if you can’t then learn how to deal with it.