Have you ever noticed how male peacocks are bright and colorful, but female peacocks are brown and dumpy-looking? Well, here’s a fun fact: all peacocks were probably brown and boring at one point, but the lady peacocks would only put out for colorful dude peacocks and now all the brown male peacocks ARE DEAD. Girl power, am I right?
This is an example of sexual selection, in an evolutionary sense; not a “who to take home for some naked Twister” sense (although they are related). Basically, it's the biological reason that we find some people more attractive than others. And by looking at the traits humans are biologically inclined to find attractive, we can use makeup to make other find us more attractive. Cool!
Let’s look at the peacocks again. Do you think that the bright plumage of the male peacock is helpful to its survival? Of course not! It’s basically a neon sign that tells predators “Hey, tasty peacock meat right over here!” So, based on natural selection, this trait should have died out. But it didn’t, just because female peacocks thought it was sexy for some reason.
So while most traits we find attractive are directly linked to perceived fertility, like health and youth, many could be totally arbitrary. For example, the “monolid” many people of East Asian descent have may have started as a way to protect their eyes, but eventually they decided it was hot and just went with it.
Since dudes can complete their reproductive duties in, like, 10 minutes (maybe), they can have practically unlimited babies. Women, on the other hand, need to devote at least nine months to the ordeal, and also have a pretty solid chance of DYING while giving birth, so we try to make each “reproductive encounter” count. This leads to women being choosier about their sexual partners, while men are more competitive, trying to get with the more desirable females.
These evolutionary behaviors are still in play even when reproduction isn’t the goal. Like how frat parties only allow a certain “ratio” of guys to girls, so there are way more girls at the party than guys. This lowers competition, making it more likely for them to get to do The Dance With No Pants, even though I guarantee none of these frat boys are looking to knock a girl up.
Human females, however, want to make themselves more desirable in order to increase competition for their magical lady bits, so we can choose a more desirable male. We use makeup to enhance the traits men have been known to find attractive--biologically, that is--to make them fall in love with us and stuff (which only makes them easier to destroy).
Clear and even skin is preferred because it indicates health and therefore fertility, so go ahead and put on some foundation and concealer. I primed with NYX Studio Perfect Primer and then used Makeup Forever HD foundation with concealer from the Coastal Scents Eclipse Palette. Then I used the Balm Stainiac stain in Beauty Queen on my cheeks for a healthy flush.
Dot on the apples of your cheeks, then blend in with you fingers in a circular motion. I then dusted my face with Make Up For Ever HD Finishing Powder to set everything.
Cool, now let’s CONTOUR. Defined cheekbones show that you’ve gone through puberty and are therefore reproductively mature, which is very sexy. The point of contouring is you shouldn’t be able to see it, so I created a helpful visual aid to show you where to put your contour color.
Use a contour brush and sweep the color onto those areas to give your face definition. I used Buck from the Urban Decay Naked Palette.
We’re going to contour our noses too, because men prefer smaller noses. This is one of those arbitrary traits that don’t make us more reproductively viable, but at some point in our evolution we just decided we liked. Draw a stripe down either side of your bridge, starting in the corner of your eyebrow. Keep the lines STRAIGHT. Symmetry is also important because asymmetry implies that something went wrong while you were chilling in your mom’s womb, and therefore something is wrong with you (but we’re all a little asymmetrical, so don’t sweat it too much).
Blend like the wind! The goal is to create a shadow, not a stripe.
The name of the game here is size and contrast. Basically, men like big eyes because they make you look young (known as a neotenous trait) and young women are generally better at making babies, especially before hospitals existed and stuff. They also find high contrast between a woman’s eyes and the surrounding area super hot. This is probably an arbitrary trait that men just decided they liked at some point.
We want to contour the lid to make the eye look rounder, so highlight the center and add a shadow color to the outer and inner third of the eye. I used Foxy and Tease from the Naked 2 palette.
I then used a bit more Foxy in the center since it can get muddled when blended, and then I brought Creep, also from the Naked 2, through my crease. To line my eyes and create contrast, I used Blackout, a matte black. Create a rounded line, thin in the inner eye, high in the center, and thinner towards the end. Then line the outer quarter of your lower lash line.
Then I tight-lined using NYX Eyeliner Pencils in White and Champagne, blending them together on my water line so the white wasn’t so WHITE, but you still got a widening effect. I also used the white liner on my inner corners.
Then curl your lashes and apply loads of mascara, top and bottom, to open the eye. Hint: waterproof holds curl better. Maybelline The Rocket is awesome.
Lips should look full and pink. Plump, pink lips are a universal symbol of health and youth, which gives guys fertility boners.
Moisturize and exfoliate before applying color. I used the Stainiac stain again, applying one layer and blending it with my fingers for a lighter wash of color.
Then I added another layer on the center of my lips for a stronger color. This gives you a more natural look, but you can apply more layers of the stain to get a really bright pink.
Shiny, healthy-looking hair is, once again, a symbol of health and youth. It indicates that you’ve been healthy and getting proper nutrition for at least as long as it took for you to grow said hair. So get your serum on.
I used Healthy Sexy Hair’s Soy Renewal Argan Oil, which I only have a tiny sample of but really like. I totally plan on buying a full-size one. Use it mostly on your ends, then use the leftovers on the fly-aways near your crown.
THE FINISHED LOOK
Hooray! It’s very natural and pretty, I think. And it’s biologically designed to land a man, if you’re into that sort of thing.
Go forth and find someone sexy to come back to you place for a game of Monopoly or, you know, whatever.