That’s hot!

Fat was once sexy. A full figure meant you could afford to eat and was thus a symbol of wealth. You likely wouldn’t imagine a plus-size person as a mainstream symbol of sexiness today. The permed mullet hopefully won’t be making a comeback anytime soon, but that was the hot look of the ‘80s. The ‘70s saw the bell-bottomed jeans with turtle necked shirts and flower-prints in a wonderful “it” hippie look. Clearly, the definition of “sexy” is not static.

Weight is often more of a concern for women than men, and though being overweight isn’t healthy, neither is being underweight. As I am sure you are well aware, anorexia and bulimia are ever increasing issues but the fact remains that some men prefer women with “meat on their bones” while other men prefer twigs.

Belly shirts were all the rage way back in middle school. Britney Spears, Christina Aguilera, and the like were all baring a little mid-riff in their music videos. This was a hot look for the ‘90s. And belly rings were soon to follow. However, now we see high-waisted skirts and pants, far from the former love-handle-revealing clothes of old.

Women in pairs are often found more attractive than the lone wolf. It’s the typical male fantasy of being with more than one woman, while of course other men are purely monogamous. This is maybe a more static typical case of sexy.

Strong burly men at one point were the ultimate symbols of sexiness. The chop down a tree, fight a bear, protect you from all the evils of the world kinda man. Tall, gangly men were far from this standard, but then the geek revolution, with help from characters like Seth Cohen of The O.C., we saw the sex appeal of our nerdy friends rise tenfold. Soon to follow were skinny jeans and v-neck shirts on guys and the definition of sexy for men has never seen such drastic variations between the scruffy manly man and the over groomed metro-sex appeal — there’s quite the range there.

I’ve personally never understood Fabio, but what hairstyles are sexy has also changed over time for men. I don’t want to think of a time when a mullet was attractive, or rat-tails but apparently it happened. I hope to never see the return of such hair monstrosities. but they say what’s old is new again, so maybe one day. . . Maybe.

Now I can’t write a piece on what’s sexy without mentioning the most recent movement of sexy. Vampires. Twihards are obsessing over Robert Pattinson and Taylor Lautner. They are the two hottest stars right now and they are changing the definition of sexy as we speak. Kisses on the neck have never been hotter post-Twilight and who ever thought bed-head would make People magazine’s hottest hair for 2009?.

Johnny Depp was People’s sexiest man of 2009 but don’t worry; the guys from Gossip Girl and Glee made the list as well.

Clothing and fashion plays a huge role in sex appeal, as well. Soft, touchable fabric is almost always sexy, unless you’re wrapping yourself in teddy bears or dead animals. Vegans wouldn’t be too attracted to that, although I`m sure a few dogs would chase you if you were covered in small stuffed animals. Lace has always been a sexy look for women, but — just a heads up — it doesn’t have the same effect on men. White and lace have the air of purity and femininity. Polyester doesn’t have the same sex appeal. However, on the other end of the spectrum, you have the sexy leather biker girl look.

Clean, even-toned, beautiful skin is always sexy. However, its becoming more and more acceptable for men to take time for their skins health. Face masks arent exclusive for women anymore, news Im sure Olay and other beauty product brands are happy with.. Bigger markets means bigger profits.

In a lecture on the history of beauty, Umberto Eco argued that a beautiful object must always follow certain rules. A nose can only be beautiful within a certain range, while an ugly nose can extend however long you can imagine — like Pinocchio. Thus ugly has an infinite amount of possibilities but beauty is finite. So although it`s easy to set parameters for what may be beautiful, the extremes of ugliness are sometimes far more interesting. Facial features often are more attractive the more symmetrical and balanced they are. But ugly knows no bounds. Isn’t that comforting?