Perceptions of Perfection is a study that shows there is no global ideal body. Part II of the study focuses on men. Graphic designers from different countries were given a base male image and asked to manipulate the photo to show their perception of the ideal man's body in that country.
Logically, if you'd been asked if you would think such a study would result in identical images (differences in graphic design notwithstanding), you would almost certainly say no.
But seeing the differences side by side drives that point home.
Yet remember, this isn't the actual average body of men in that country. Rather, the supposed ideal. Or rather, a representation of the ideal people have in mind. The ideal that, for better or worse, affects many people's perceptions of themselves and how other see them.
The site lets you drill down to some more details, and see more countries than I can show here.
What conclusions do I draw from this? Well, the US guy really is closest to my physical ideal. But seeing other bodies does help me question why. Because I'm actually holding a torch for Macedonia.
I don't know the history of Macedonia, so sorry if the "holding a torch" part brings up some awful event involving fire. Really I just mean he's cute.
This also reminds me how horrible it was to watch the Miss Universe pageant and see how certain standards of beauty were applied across all contestants. I don't have male beauty pageants to compare this too, but I just remember being pissed off that Miss Congo got horrible marks. By whose standard, I thought, even while watching as a kid?
But when you bring sexual attraction into it, there's another layer. Except who we are attracted to is not simply defined by societal ideals and we may be attracted to a certain body/face combo that is different than ourselves. We may hold prospective boyfriends up to our own personal ideal which may have something in common with the national ideal, but also may just be unique to us. Plus, just speaking for myself, I cannot sustain physical interest in someone who doesn't possess certain important qualities.
I do wish they could have brought rear views and full frontal into this too. Not to be obscene but just because I'm genuinely wondering what the ideal ass variations would be. As for ideal dick variations, maybe because dick size and shape isn't something people really have control over, it's out of the equation.
Meanwhile, do you know the long distance dial code to Macedonia? I just hope I'm that guy's ideal! Hell, use this thing to move to a country in which your current body is closest to that country's ideal. You'll be the belle of the ball.
[Via Huffington Post]