A few weeks ago, I had an awesome idea for a post. I figured it would be insightful and would hopefully help to codify a highly debated topic. Then I sat down and started typing it up.

I got through the introduction and then typed a grand total of two sentences after that. Stopping, I realized that it was almost impossible to be objective and left the draft at that.

What was I trying to define, you may ask?

An absolute version of the “1-10” scale.

What I realized was that even though I could define, say, a “5” as a “plain jane, neither cute nor ugly.” The problem arises when you get into the 6-9 range.

Note: I don’t believe that 10’s exist for extended periods of time, they’re like mayflies with extremely short lifespans.

How could I have the temerity to say, “this is a what a ‘6’ is, and fuck you if you disagree!”

Which brings us back to the old saying you hear in the Manosphere:

“My 6 is your 8, bro.”

And to be honest, it is true because every guy has his own view of what’s hot and what’s not. Sure, there are some ratings that we can all agree on, but when out and about in the world most guys won’t agree with your rating at all.

The “1-10” scale is, and will always be a relative one.


For those that are curious, here’s what I wrote before I realized my hubris:

If you’ve been around this part of the internet long enough, you’ll come across descriptions of how attractive a girl is based on a 1 to 10 scale. This is a handy way of giving a general idea to readers what the girl looks like (unless they’re lying or embellishing). I myself have used this scale many times.

The problem I’ve seen is that instead of being utilized in an absolute sense, the scale has morphed into a relative one.

Many of you are familiar with the scales used to measure temperature, being Fahrenheit (in the US) and Celsius (everywhere else). These scales are based relative to the freezing and boiling points of water. The key word in the last sentence being “relative.”

Now, for the non-scientists in the audience there exists an absolute temperature scale based on molecular motion, the Kelvin scale (easily converted from Celsius, just add 273.15). This scale has the temperature where molecular motion completely stops as 0, which is also called “absolute zero.”

What does this have to do with the 1-10 scale for looks?

Good question.

The idea behind having a scale that isn’t relative to anything allows for it to be more universally applied and (hopefully) understood. At its current state, the 1-10 scale has become a relative scale that loses all meaning outside of the guy doing the rating of the girl. Recently, Steve Jabba created a graphic pointing this out rather cheekily.

I myself have noticed this too. For instance, usually a guy posts a picture on Twitter or a blog of a girl and some Real Alpha Male™ drops in and shouts “Pointy elbows, one eye is bigger than the other, 4, WNB!” This used to perplex me because usually the picture shown was of a cute girl, but then I came to the realization that these keyboard jockeys do this (which became a running joke in the Manosphere, by the way) to gain “status” and signal two things:

  1. The Real Alpha Male™ gets way more girls than you do.
  2. The girls the Real Alpha Male™ gets are way way hotter than what you get; the “my 6 is your 8” trope.

For the second point this could possibly be true for this guy, but you usually see this boasting in a comment thread without actual proof of their claim. Like the saying goes, “on the internet nobody knows that you’re a dog.”

The Absolute Scale 

The absolute 1-10 scale is centered around the “5” rating, which I’m going to define as “plain.” A 5 is neither ugly, nor cute. She’s just a plain, ordinary looking girl.



2 thoughts on “Hubris

  1. You certainly could come up with a more quantitative scale based on facial symmetry and BMI, but skin tone, eye color, and hair color prefefences may not be universal. If such preferences were universal, however, an absolute scale for beauty would be possible but would also require more information than is currently available.

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