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lifeflame's avatar

If you were born handsome, is the attention more likely to make you introverted or extroverted?

Asked by lifeflame (5912points) June 18th, 2012

Let’s say there’s a baby, who is naturally very handsome or beautiful. Probably the type of attention they will receive growing up (both from adults and their peers) will be quite different. Are they more likely to be extroverted or introverted as a result of this attention? Or does it not matter? Is there something that genetically predisposes you to introvertism/extrovertism that is independent of what you look like?

What if we acknowledge that physical beauty is not inherent, but the result of care and management? (i.e., instead of appearance causing introvertism/extrovertism; it’s the introvertism/extrovertism that causes an attentiveness to one’s appearance.) Is an extrovert is more likely to care about what other people think about their appearance, and groom themselves better? Or is the pretty cheerleader/ nerdy nerd myth bogus?

[note: there are many assumptions in this question about introvertism/extrovertism and the nature of beauty, but for this question, let’s play along and pretend that introvertism/extrovertism are opposites, and that the beauty discussed here is just about physical appearance…]

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25 Answers

blueiiznh's avatar

My feeling is there is no connection.

Dutchess_III's avatar


Pandora's avatar

I was a pretty baby growing up. I had times where I would showboat and other times when I couldn’t squeak out a word. I think it changes as we grow and become more self aware. No matter how cute you are as a kid you will eventually lose the baby cuteness and you will react to different people differently. I found myself showboating for people who loved and adored me and who I knew well. I would shy away from people I didn’t know and trust.
In the end it think its about trust. That will play a part into it. The rest has to do with self confidence.

bookish1's avatar

I was of the impression that being introverted or extroverted is more a matter of the genetic dice and perhaps very early childhood. I am an introvert from a family of introverts.

@lifeflame, Where did you get the idea that beauty and introversion/extroversion might be directly related? This never would have occurred to me.

tups's avatar

I know many handsome people who are introverts, just like I know a lot of not so handsome people who are extroverts.
I believe the introvert/extrovert thing is based on the inside and nothing more.

mrrich724's avatar

Sorry, the question was TL;DR

However, based on the title of the question, I’d say IMO that one doesn’t have to do with the other. I’ve seen both very attractive and quite unattractive people be extroverted, and I could say the same with introverts.

I think there are other, more important environmental, self-esteem affecting factors that play a huge role.

marinelife's avatar

I think that beautiful people are more likely to be extroverted just because of the attention lavished on them from birth.

That said, I don’t attractiveness can come from being either extroverted or introverted.

Dutchess_III's avatar

Well, I’m pretty sure that the things I said and did wer tolerated, or deemed “cool,” more than usual because I was good looking. Not by adults, but by my peers, and that can give you a sense of confidence, whether it was misplaced or not.

I FEEL like I’m an introvert inside…but on the other hand, I’m super-outgoing a lot. And Mom said when I was smaller, like 5, she had me at a birthday party and the guy was trying to take a picture of the birthday girl and I kept sticking my face in front of the camera! She said it was embarrassing.

Today I asked to go into the “control tower” at work. Our jail is one of the most high-tech facilities in the state (it was just built in 2008). The control tower is about a story above the cell blocks, so you can look down on all of them. It’s pentagonal and it looks like a space-craft inside with all kinds of computers and stuff. The walls are all glass, that slants outward, and the last three feet of the floor is glass also. It’s like you’re floating. (It’s cool!) You feel like you’re hovering in some space ship above everything. Well, the controller can see into all 5 cell blocks just by turning his or her head, but the guys can’t see in unless the controller turns on the lights, which they can, individually. They are just like spot lights in front of the glass wall looking out over each cell block. They’re on a dimmer too. Well, this is the 2nd time I’ve been up there, and I SWEAR next time I’m going to walk right up to the G &H block window and strike the MJ pose he takes just before he does the moon walk and ask the guard to slowly turn up the lights while I’m in front of the windows! And then I will try to do the moon walk. And the funky chicken. And I’ll probably pretend to trip over my own feet and stuff. I’m gonna do it, if they’ll let me!! I am!

Maybe…I’m not really an introvert at heart.

zensky's avatar

I was born this way. I am a little bit of both. I don’t think there’s a connection. My son was born very handsome (lucky guy resembles his mom) and he is painfully introverted. There are all kinds of “handsome” for beauty is in the eyes of the beholder – and there are shades of characteristics, qualities and traits. JMHO.

Coloma's avatar

Looks have nothing to do with the introvert/extrovert dichotomy. Temperament is genetic and external attention doesn’t make any difference.
I was born an enthusiastic and high spirited extrovert female and while my looks have garnered me attention over the years ( I’m gettin’ older now and my looks are fading but my personality remains the same. ) my natural energy has nothing to do with receiving attention, I’ve always been outgoing and friendly and approachable. :-)

Supacase's avatar

I happen to have very pretty eyes. Strangers often stopped to tell me so and I was always so uncomfortable and embarrassed. I have learned to respond with a simple “thank you” now that I’m too big to hide behind my mom’s leg. I’m most definitely an introvert. Make of that what you will.

Aethelwine's avatar

<——— born cute. very much an introvert. =)

@Supacase Compliments always embarrassed me and made me feel uncomfortable when I was a child. I hated the attention. I’ve always liked to keep to myself.

wundayatta's avatar

For decades, I thought I was ugly. I was also introverted.

Some people tell me I’m good looking now. I’ve also been working hard to become more extroverted.

Have I been good looking all my life and didn’t know it? Or have I been working at becoming more extroverted and people respond to that and think I am better looking as a result? Or is there not particular relationship between the two aspects of me?

I don’t know. But I am very skeptical that I am good looking. If anything, just being more outgoing has made people think I’m better looking.

Trillian's avatar

You’ve left out all the variables.

lifeflame's avatar

@bookish1 – You know, I have no idea how I made that connection between beauty/intro-extrovertism. This question was written at 6am, and I think the wiring gets a bit funny that early in the morning. I’d just written a response to a question about attractive qualities, so most probably the idea of beauty came from there. Ah yes, I was musing about a conversation I had with a new friend of mine where I told her about my past boyfriends and what it was that attracted them to me; and how they were both very strong introverts. That’s where the introvert/extrovert connection came to be.

I have read studies that suggest that we do judge people by their appearance (here is a bit of a long article that cite studies that suggest that people assign different personality traits to people with different facial features—e.g., people with dominant facial features are more likely to be perceived as strong, independent, and dishonest…), so, I guess it got me wondering if there was a correlation between appearance / intro-extrovertism, and if so, how we might or might not explain the causation.

@Trillian – yes, many variables. That’s why this question is in social. You are free to go with your gut; or set the variables yourself. The essence of question: Is there a relationship between appearance and intro-extrovertism, and if so, how might it be explained?

Trillian's avatar

@lifeflame I don’t believe your question can be answered with any degree of accuracy as stated.
As stated, I would have to say absolutely no relationship. Even if attenetion were somethiung a person enjoyed, it would have nothing to do with a person’s intro or extroversion. Nor would their looks.
Your second question is even more false and unfounded.

Imadethisupwithnoforethought's avatar

I grew up chubby and was introverted.

I am now in decent shape and I have been told I am absurdly hot.

The odd thing about the question is you are still you. Other people react how the are going to react.

Here is an example: A woman calls me from an airport and says her flight is delayed, I say of course she can stay at my apartment. I meet her at the airport. I tell her at the bar “My place is a mess, I did not expect company.”

The bartender, who is female, says “Oh, I am pretty sure women don’t care how your place looks when they ask you for a place to stay…”

I think being a woman is clarifying in some ways. You get to assume every man wants to screw you. Being a man is a lot more complicated.

augustlan's avatar

I was a good looking girl back in the day, and have always been an introvert. I was more social during the height of my ‘good looks period’, but inside I was still very much an introvert.

ucme's avatar

I’m fucking gorgeous….baby, but kind of mixed up ;¬}

Strauss's avatar

—I once worked for a man who would always say, “Why wasn’t
I born rich instead of good looking?”—
and believe me he was neither!

Paradox25's avatar

You’re asking quite a few questions here, and I’m not sure where to start. I’ll try this though, I was introverted long before I was even concerned about my looks, so I think this should answer a part of your question. I’ve received compliments throughout my entire life from women about my eyes, looks, etc, and I’d remained just as introverted as ever.

Obviously the answers here will vary from person to person, but there is a difference between a shy extrovert and an introvert. I don’t believe that introverts can turn into extroverts, and vice versa. ‘Introverts’ who turn extrovert were likely not really introverts to begin with, but were really shy extroverts waiting to come out of their shell.

fremen_warrior's avatar

First of all it depends on how much your personality is influenced by genetics. Having said that, there is the halo effect… add upbringing into the mix, the habits of one’s guardians (you can have both parents and still feel attached more to say your grandparents, hence the term) – that last bit is a huge influence on personality development after all.

In my opinion having more charisma (to use RPG terminology ;-) definitely can give a child a push towards extraversion, it is not the deciding factor however. There are quite a few gorgeous people who claim to be introverts. Heck, I’m a fine example of a handsome introvert (though I tell myself I’m just a ‘badass lone wolf’ type dude) heh.

My question for you is do you think it is better to be either one of the two (assuming for a moment that we are not living in an extrovert-dominated world)?

lifeflame's avatar

@fremen_warrior – You mean, would I prefer to be a handsome introvert or a handsome extrovert? I’d prefer to be a handsome introvert… but then, I’m an introvert, what can I say?

fremen_warrior's avatar

@lifeflame I mean do you think either introverts or extroverts are inherently better, physical attractiveness aside. Now that you rephrased that, I am not entirely sure what my question meant lol

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