What I’m Into: Sexy Aliens

I don’t have time to write a proper post this week, so I thought I’d rant at you about sexy aliens instead. Good? Good.

One of my favorite movies, Kissing Jessica Stein, has a conversation in it that goes like this (transcript via):

Jessica: He just wasn’t funny, you know? That’s always been my problem, I think. Not smart or not funny. Or not smart and not funny. Or funny, but in a totally unappealing way – like funny-stupid or funny-dopey, rather than funny-witty, or funny-ironic or funny-goofy. Or, you think they’re smart, and then you realize that they’re not – and that’s funny. But funny-tragic. And then, if you’re lucky enough to find someone who’s the right kind of smart and the right kind of funny, usually they’re just… kinda…
Helen: Ugly?
Jessica: Ugly, exactly. Oh my god, is that awful?
Helen: No, not at all. Ugly doesn’t do it for you. That’s okay. See, me, I’m kinda into ugly… But only if it’s sexy-ugly.
Jessica: Sexy-ugly? Define.
Helen: I was gonna say Mick Jagger. He’s the big one. Oh, Lyle Lovett, um, James Woods, Harvey Keitel, he’s very sexy-ugly.

I have occasionally described someone as “sexy-ugly” since first hearing the term in that movie, but it feels mean. I don’t want to call someone ugly when I actually think they’re attractive, and it seems like the word “ugly” is so often used to mean “conventionally ugly” which I don’t think is a very useful concept.

So, the solution: I’ve been calling these people “sexy aliens” instead, which I think is a) more flattering and b) more accurate.

Right now I’m on a total Sherlock kick, not only because it’s a fucking great show but also because watching Benedict Cumberbatch do his thing is utterly transfixing. He is a total sexy alien. He’s clearly very handsome, with an intriguing face and a body that’s babely in that scrawny-shrimpy-gangly way I’m totally into, but he’s also weird-looking. He looks like he’s not quite of this earth. And I’m into it.

I’ve put some other examples of sexy aliens in the photo above. Lily Cole is a model who looks like a live-action Tim Burton character. Anjelica Huston rocked the shit out of many sexy-alien film roles, like Morticia Addams and Etheline Tenenbaum (and she also dated another notable sexy alien, Jack Nicholson). Tom Hiddleston was recommended to me by a friend when I mentioned I was going to write about this; I don’t know much about him yet but I know his face is equal parts appealing and distinctive, as is the sexy-alien way.

There’s a tendency for people to say they have “unconventional tastes” when they like faces like these – as if these people weren’t, you know, models and movie stars, and therefore obviously pretty damn attractive. But, that said, there is something very empowering about the proliferation of sexy aliens in the media. It makes us unconventionally attractive weirdos feel a little closer to glamor and perfection.

Andy Samberg’s big ol’ schnoz makes me feel better about mine. Christina Ricci’s major fivehead gives me confidence in mine. Adrien Brody’s power-brows make me want to rock mine a little thicker. Jessica Paré’s teeth are just fucking adorable.

Who are your favorite sexy aliens? I wanna hear all about ‘em.

10 Easy Ways to Make Yourself More Attractive

I think we’d all like to be a little hotter. It doesn’t have to be about other people’s approval or attention; sometimes you just wanna feel foxy, for your own benefit. Or sometimes your confidence needs a boost so you do want to attract external attention.

Whatever your reasons are – and it’s no one’s place to judge, so don’t let them – here are ten simple ways to make yourself cuter, more appealing, more intriguing. Go get ‘em, tiger.

1. Stand up straight. Check your posture in a mirror. Don’t slouch. Hold your head centered and straight on top of your neck. Practice with books balanced on your head like a debutante in an old novel if you have to. Do regular check-ins throughout the day to see if you’ve maintained your posture goals. Eventually it’ll become second nature.

2. Smile. I have resting bitchface and so do a lot of people. I get it: it feels unnatural to walk around with a smile on your face. But it doesn’t have to be a massive grin, don’t worry. Just let a small smile play around the corners of your mouth when you’re out and about. This isn’t one of those “You’re obligated to smile because some dude on the street told you to” sort of things – it’s something you can do for yourself, if you want. A slight smile makes you seem more open, cheerful, relaxed, and approachable. If that’s an effect you want to achieve, give it a try.

3. Open up your body language. Quit crossing your arms. Roll your shoulders out and back. Look around you confidently instead of staring at your phone. Take big, easy strides. Fully face the people you talk to, and make good eye contact. Let your body be a billboard bearing this message: “I’m easygoing, friendly, and open to getting to know you!”

4. Cultivate passion. There are already things you’re passionate about; don’t be afraid to talk about them. And if nothing comes to mind (?!), find something to love boldly and deeply. Books, music, theatre, art, history, stationery, sex toys, sharks, woodworking, fitness, storm patterns, architecture, arboriculture, whatever. There are few things hotter than seeing someone’s eyes light up as they talk about something they love.

5. Wear clothes that fit you. Get some stuff tailored if you need to (and you probably do). Get rid of anything unsalvageably baggy or tight. (If you’re the type who holds onto clothes in the hopes of one day being able to fit into them, fuck that – live your life now, not later.) Put on a belt. Cinch your waist with a jacket or cardigan. Get your pants taken up so they don’t drag on the ground. You’ll feel so much more capable and confident when your clothes complement your body instead of hiding it or squeezing it.

6. Speak with conviction. Don’t be a mumbler! Speak clearly and at a volume that’s definitely audible but situationally appropriate (no yelling in the library, please). Say each word like you chose it specifically and carefully. Try to eliminate transitional, buying-for-time words and phrases such as “like” and “you know” and “um” (but don’t beat yourself up about it, because it’s hard). If swearing makes you feel tacky, give it up; if swearing makes you feel boss and badass, go right on ahead. Believe that your words and ideas are important and speak them accordingly.

7. Stay informed. Follow the news. Keep up with culture (the parts that you like). Learn new words. Read. Form educated opinions on things. You don’t have to be a genius, but some level of intelligence and awareness is almost universally smokin’ hot.

8. Do stuff. Get out into the world. Meet people, go on adventures, have experiences. Learn new skills, try new things, visit new places (in your city or in the world). Sitting at home and surfing the internet every night is incredibly fun and relaxing (I’m a geeky introvert; I get it) but it leaves you with not much to talk about and not much experience to draw from. Like Sarah Dopp says: “Make at least some choices based on what will make for the better story.” People who do lots of stuff are generally more interesting than people who don’t do much.

9. Improve your conversational skills. Read Dale Carnegie’s book and any materials you can find on active listening. Ask people about themselves. Come up with some interesting questions you can ask just about anyone, like “What are you passionate about?” and “What’s the last book you read?” and “What are your goals?” and really listen to what people say in response. Join the social skills subreddit for some extra help and support. Practice coming up with follow-up questions for when people tell you stories or mention things in passing, like “What did you think of that?” or “How did that go?” or “If you could do that over again, would you do it differently?” Try to remember what people have told you about themselves before, and bring it up the next time you see them: “So what ended up happening with your mom’s art show/your dog’s vet appointment/your job interview?” To state all this more simply: ask people about themselves and be genuinely interested.

10. Work on your self-love. I’ve written about this before, so have a read through that. I still wholeheartedly recommend writing or speaking positive affirmations about yourself on the daily and looking at Gala Darling’s writings on “radical self-love”. Phase haters out of your life, both the kind who hate on you and the kind who hate on people in general (e.g. tabloid magazines, YouTube commenters, overly negative friends). Remind yourself of your value daily, even if that means you have to shove your insecurities to the back of your brain in order to shine a little light on what you’re most proud of. Always always always remember that hotness is subjective, so even if you don’t like what you see in the mirror, there are plenty of folks who would – even if that seems absurd to you, trust me, it’s true, it’s true, it’s true.

What else can a person do to make themselves hotter/cuter/more likeable?

How to Receive Desire When You Feel Undesirable

Honesty time: I may be a sex blogger, but I hardly ever feel sexy.

I’ve grown up with a chubby body and a face that’s definitely not “conventionally attractive.” But truthfully, insecurity and an ugly self-image can plague anyone, regardless of what they look like on the outside. Even the most gorgeous, magazine-worthy folks have their own self-love struggles to deal with.

Dissatisfaction with your appearance can cause problems in all sorts of areas, but one place where it feels especially weird is when you find yourself being wanted by someone. When you’re the target of desire and flirtation, it can feel foreign, misplaced, or even like a mean trick. Even after years of working on my self-acceptance, I still find myself assuming that compliments I receive from flirtatious strangers are really just a joke, and that they’re mocking me, Regina George-style.

That said, here are my best tips for how to deal with being desired when you feel undesirable. These work for me… most of the time.

Work on your self-love. Everyone could use a boost in this area, I think. I am a fan of Gala Darling’s “Radical Self-Love” materials, as well as the book You Can Heal Your Life by Louise L. Hay. You can also keep it simple by just paying yourself a compliment every day in the mirror. (Are you surprised to see hippie-dippy self-love stuff on a sex blog? Don’t be! Self-acceptance is mandatory for fulfilling, healthy sex, methinks.)

Remember that attraction is subjective. Oh, this is a big one for me. I look at myself in the mirror and think, “That’s not hot!” and so I assume, implicitly, that everyone else feels the same. Well, they don’t! Everyone is attracted to different qualities and body types and personalities and faces. Sometimes it helps to remind myself of all the quirky-looking people I’ve been attracted to. They weren’t supermodels, but I adored them. And it’s perfectly understandable for people to feel that way about me, too.

Invite more flirtatious energy into your life. I am an advocate of relationship models that allow for flirting with people other than your partner, because I think that flirty energy is enormously healing and uplifting for most of us. But even if you’re in a strictly monogamous relationship, you’re still allowed to enjoy crushing on others and being crushed on by others, though you may need to keep those feelings inside yourself. You can also watch movies or TV shows where there’s a lot of romance going on – I find that works almost as well as the real thing! The more commonplace those flirty, happy, romantic feelings become in your life, the easier it’ll be to believe that you can be (and are) the recipient of desire.

Fish for compliments. Honestly, fuck people who tell you not to do this. (I don’t mean “fuck them” in the sexual way. I mean it in the “oh, fuck off, you asshole” way.) Obviously it’s annoying when someone is constantly complaining about how ugly they feel, in an over-the-top attempt to garner praise. But if you’re feeling shitty about yourself, you are allowed to ask for reinforcement and affirmation from those who adore you. You are allowed to say, “What is your favorite thing about me?” or “What is the sexiest part of my body?” I used to be a hardcore advocate of the idea that you have to love yourself before anyone else can love you, but then I learned that actually, hearing about how much other people love you can be a great way to shore up your own self-love reserves.

Adorn yourself lovingly. Fuck what other people think looks good on you. What do you think looks good on you? What clothing, makeup, and/or hairstyle is going to make you feel your cutest and most fuckable? Put that stuff on (or go out and buy it, if you don’t already own it) and wear it as often as you reasonably can. Physical trappings may be deemed shallow by some, but they can work wonders on your self-image, so you may as well use them as the tools that they are.

Choose, and embody, a sexiness role model. When you’re at a party or some other environment where you tend to feel like an ugly shrinking violet, choose a celebrity or real-life person who you view as strong, sexy, and desirable – and then pretend you’re them. Try to take on their posture, confidence, and energy. This is a “fake it til you make it” sort of approach, but it works. (Another similar thing I like to do sometimes: imagine your sexiness role model, or your latest crush, is watching you do everything you do. You will automatically act – and feel – sexier and cuter!)

Improve your nutrition and activity level. This is boring and bordering-on-preachy, but I do find I feel sexier when I’m eating well, drinking a lot of water, and getting a decent amount of exercise. This is especially useful for those of us who don’t like our bodies. It’s hard to hate your body for how it looks when you simultaneously love your body for how it feels and what it can do.

Consume more images of people who look like you. Make a Pinterest board or photo album of people who have whatever physical “imperfections” you don’t like about yourself: big hips, big nose, big feet, whatever it is. I promise you there are sexy-as-fuck people in the world who are totally rocking that feature that you hate on yourself, and I also promise that filling your eyes with images of these people will slowly-but-surely shift your perception of that feature.

How do you make yourself feel sexier when you feel distinctly un-hot?

Sharing the Sexy #7

• Here’s the 7 dumbest myths about gay sex.

• Modern Family actor Jesse Tyler Ferguson is launching a company that sells stylish bowties to benefit pro-gay rights organizations. I don’t know about you, but I love being able to buy cute things and support my favorite causes at the same time!

• This dildo is apparently spiritually charged. Would you buy one?

• This theory of attraction purports to explain why we get into certain kinds of relationships with certain kinds of people.

• This headline is so ridiculous, it requires no commentary: Man Tries to Rape Raccoon, Gets His Penis Bitten Off.

• Got a vaginal infection you want to cure naturally? (I am so amused by the suggestion to put garlic in your vagina. I’ll definitely try this next time I get an infection…!)

• This guy’s penis inhaled a condom…?! “Basically you know when the tip goes inside out and inside your penis? That’s it.” Uh, no, I don’t know if I’ve seen that one before.

• I made a list of examples of how our society actively encourages women to suppress our sexuality. Can you think of any more?

• The Pervocracy writes about that age-old battle: vibrator vs. penis. My thoughts, as someone who owns a zillion vibrators and has a wonderful boyfriend with a wonderful cock? Both are satisfying. Both are immensely pleasurable. And both have their time and place in my life, absolutely.

• Feeling generous? A Steampunk’s Guide to Sex is taking Kickstarter donations.

• In sex-positive circles, we spend a lot of time discussing all the kinky and out-there things we’d like to try… but what don’t you want to do in bed? My list: scat (but I’d give watersports a shot), armpit-licking, group sex with four or more people, ass-to-mouth, and getting fucked with anything over 8 inches long (sorry, huge dudes!).

• This man cut off, cooked, and served his own penis. I’m speechless.

• In honor of Bi Visibility Day, Carrie wrote about being an out-and-proud bisexual. Hell yeah!

• Rush Limbaugh is seriously blaming small penises on feminists. What the fuck is wrong with this guy?