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Women should wear make-up

I used to think in this way, when I was a teenager. “Women shouldn’t wear make-up.” This was because I was afraid of sex and afraid of competition—the reason is the same here. Men compete to be more sexually attractive through the augmentation of their bodies—they work out. Women compete to be more sexually attractive with make-up. This is not some way to betray the evolutionary process—it is the process, it is the arms race.

The race is not somehow “fair” in its own terms—it is not that the most beautiful and intelligent (or the most modest) should survive or do survive. What survives survives. If a woman who is ugly is canny with make-up and she manages to have more children than a woman who does not wear make-up, then what survives is her ability to be canny. That is how it works—there has been no “decrease in fitness” (the original tweet is really a mish-mash of Darwin and religious ideas).

Man looks at the process and says “the most intelligent and beautiful should survive” (or, if he is insincere, “the most modest and kind”). That is not so. What survives survives—if it’s a single-celled sponge-like organism that outbreeds everything then that is what survives. Perhaps it is intelligence that survives in the end—certainly, man is the most intelligent animal on the planet and also dominates the planet.

Of course, it is conceivable that his intelligence will destroy him; and that, perhaps, only intelligence up to a certain level has survival value (it’s no good to be too clever—and very high IQ people struggle to reproduce or even survive, and there’s no reason why an AI couldn’t encounter similar problems in principle).

When people say “women shouldn’t wear make-up” it’s just a counter-signal. It’s an attempt to “neg” the woman, in part, but it’s also really mainly about an unwillingness to compete—it’s the same as the Puritan spirit, the Puritan who refuses to put big red feathers in his cap like a Cavalier (he won’t do it because aristocrats do it, because they do it he says it’s immoral and evil—so that he can garnish his status with plain clothes).

The person on the sidelines sees people who go out to clubs on Friday and Saturday but they can’t quite join in—refuse to throw themselves into life, perhaps because their personality is more neurotic, so they say “women shouldn’t wear make-up”. It’s an attack on the competition, but also a way to say—“I don’t have to compete because I’m too good to compete (it’s moral, I like plain things)”.

It changes the field of competition to a morals battle, and that has the advantage that morals cannot be empirically verified (unlike muscles). Your moral views amount to what you feel about a situation. There is no way to verify them on the empirical level—perhaps your morals are an intuition, perhaps they’re an instinct, perhaps they’re a tradition (with a proven survival value—that is empirical); but it’s not something we can agree on, unlike my muscles or my car or my demonstrable power.

So people who talk about morals want to shift the “field of struggle” to the emotional terrain where they think they can win (to think in this way is feminine, it’s women who use emotions to dominate the situation—hence it is probably a form of degeneration in a man, if we take the ideal type to be a viral man who demonstrates his effectiveness in a practical way).

A lot of things are like this—recycling, for example (it’s mostly pointless, surely—just showing off that you recycle?); and, also, Ikea furniture (so Spartan, you even assemble it yourself—and that might be partly about money, but it’s also being about the kind of person who “does his own work”; and it’s more about that the money—“I made it myself,” you say to yourself, as you tighten the last screw. It’s a delusion, but a pleasant one—perhaps you’ll go back and buy some meatballs).

Finally, you can tell the tweet is leftist because it speaks about “the good of the species overall”—um, wat? What is this “species” that evolution in some way protects or augments? “The species” competes with other species, individual races within the species compete with each other, family units compete with each other, individuals compete with each other, genes compete with each other—perhaps some sub-atomic particles compete with other particles.

It’s a non-standard take, not “the good of mankind” but “the good of the species”—the conclusion is the same “the competition must stop”. Women must not be allowed to enhance their sexual attractiveness. Whether or not men should be allowed to is not discussed, but the main thrust is to reduce the desirability of women so that the speaker can mate with them under moral pretexts, as opposed to under physical pretexts (I assume a man with a developed body and a woman who wears make-up go together—they seek to improve themselves, not harm themselves). I don’t see why women shouldn’t wear make-up.


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