25 July 2011

Eye candy vs brain and heart candy

Is eye candy really worth it? Maybe brain or heart candy is better?
~ tweet by @Ambiguousviews
The question above was posed to me on Twitter after I commented on not seeing enough hot men at the football last week - my first football match.

Despite my desires for people to look past the exterior, I can be quite superficial - ogling good looking men on TV, in bands, bars, uni... anywhere really. I fall for blue eyes, great smiles, toned arms and scruff.

My good friend (also insightful and quite the romantic) Steve Tucker said "You cannot get to the brain or heart candy without the eye candy. Eye candy underpins attraction". 

Good point, but for me, things don't often start with looks. Or do they? Men often dismiss potential with me because of my looks. I have a killer online dating profile (with a killer picture of me, red face and all) - "Stylish, kind hearted and outgoing writer and TV presenter seeking friendship, romance and love" - what a catch!! No? "No thanks" say the replies.

I spoke about the difficulty of online dating on Triple J last week. One of the things I spoke about, but was edited out, was the way I feel attracted to other qualities in men, beyond their physical appearance. And I think this is because of my own experiences of finding it hard for people to firstly look past my appearance to get to know me, and then appreciate my appearance.

I have felt attracted to people, even loved them, based on intellect, conversation, humour and their ability to feel compassion and love. It's like the more I get to know and love someone, the more physically attractive they become. I've met a few people online, who I've bonded with via text/email and phone, and met them and felt almost instant attraction to their looks. I can remember two of these moments with two people - neither particularly romantic (in the car and playing with his dog), but it was then that their eye and brain candy collided with their eye candy. To make a giant heart lollipop?

I find articulate use of words attractive. Email and text exchanges can make me fall in love - and if they're a good speller, I'm planning my wedding. I find intellect attractive. If we can have an intelligent, meaningful conversation, my heart flutters. And if they are compassionate towards humankind and better still, me, they've won my heart. Looks rarely matter.

I believe heart and brain candy surpasses eye candy. There have been a few times where I've never been fussed about what someone looked like because I've loved their 'personality candy'. And then their physical appearance catches my eye and I'm a puddle on the floor. Their personality heightens their looks so much. It's like they're Simon Denny, Hamish Blake and Callan Mulvey morphed into one. With a personality I am in love with. 

Maybe this is dangerous? Falling in love with words. Over thinking. Being easily pleased by kind things being said (and maybe not always done?). I get hurt. I wonder if I will ever put eye candy before brain and heart candy, and I wonder if this will protect me more?


  1. Great entry, Carly!

    Physical (and sometimes intellectual) attraction is often the catalyst for getting to know someone better, and that's not necessarily a bad thing. Unless of course it is used as a means of not talking to people outright, and subsequently missing out on their unique perspectives and possible charms.

  2. The intellectual attraction has always won over looks for me. It's bizarre. Great post :)

  3. For me, it's definitely a combination of both. Or, more accurately, a person's behaviour or personality tends to augment (or detract from) their personal appearance. A person who is a jerk tends to look ugly to me, whereas someone who is considerate and behaves decently is attractive, regardless of how they may regard their own appearance.

    When it comes down to it, our looks are inherited from our parents anyway - they're not something we've earnt or created for ourselves. Personalities are the truly fascinating things!

  4. I met my hubby on rsvp. It's a long story but yes i was attracted to his photo but when writing to each other on email, if he was a crap speller i knew i wouldnt have been interested! I personally would take Billy Connelly over Brad Pitt any day!!

  5. To put it simply I have always blieved that really good looking people become ugly fast when their personality sucks, and average people become amazing when their personality rocks.

  6. Great post! Eye candy does not last. You're so right about brain candy heightening the eye candy factor :)
    Heidi xo

  7. I know exactly what you mean. People tell me that most of my boyfriends have been physically ugly, but had beautiful personalities (with the exception of a few who were ugly through & through). I find people becoming much more attractive when I love their personality, and I struggle to find someone attractive at all if I know they are actually a douchebag.

  8. Oh Carly, I almost strained my neck from nodding so vigorously along to this! (I'm COMPLETELY susceptible to falling in love with people for their minds alone!)

  9. I totally believe brain candy enhances eye candy. It's quite amazing how someone's personality can influence the way you perceive their looks - for better or worse. In my case, I'm trying to resist someone who has both...killer combination.


  10. Brain and heart candies both have the magical property of morphing into eye candy as well.


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