Pretty Privilege


Have you had experiences that hinged on your looks? The kind where a guy offers to pay for your drink or the girl laughs out loud to your pretty dead jokes? Or are you on the other end of this spectrum where you never get to experience these things – saddle up because we are going to lay some pretty neat discussions here, you ready? First of all, this might be one of the most controversial opinions you have heard today but anyway, let’s begin.


Pretty privilege essentially means having access to the finer things in life, whether socially or professionally, because of your looks. Pretty privilege is as old as time, and it wasn’t until some years ago that people began speaking up about it. It is something that, in my opinion, cannot be unlearned; however, if you don’t fit into the ‘category,’ you can still make it work for you. I will be sharing a couple of tips on how to do that.

A definition of pretty privilege that I find somewhat all-encompassing was shared by Janet Mock in Allure Newsletter. She said, and I quote, “Pretty privilege can give way to more popularity, higher grades, more positive work reviews, and career advancement. People considered pretty are more likely to be hired, have higher salaries, are likely to be found guilty, and are sentenced less harshly. Pretty people are perceived as smarter, healthier, and more competent, and people treat pretty people better. Pretty privilege is also conditional and is not often extended to women who are trans, black and brown, disabled, older, and/or fat”.

After going through a couple of videos and articles on pretty privilege, it is clear that pretty privilege is two-sided; it has its pros and cons. But people tend to focus only on the pros and choose to neglect the very harsh cons.

If we are honest, at some point in our lives, we have probably hated/disliked that fine girl or guy in class that always seemed to get attention, and you were often inclined to be a tad bit excited when you heard a rumor about them or when they got into trouble. It often soothed your aching heart and troubled esteem (this is a bit too extreme 😅😅 , but you get what I mean). Anyway, let’s draw up a list of pros and cons of pretty privilege (you can add yours too in the comment section 😊😊).

The Pros and Cons of Pretty Privilege


  • You get a lot of free stuff ranging from food to money to anything at all
  • Attention Attention Attention
  • You are rated higher in social skills and dominance
  • Better opportunities have a tendency to find you (e.g., ambassadorial deals, gigs, etc.)
  • Preferential treatment is your go-to guy


  • Your looks can be overly sexualized
  • You are judged by other women
  • People tend to prey on you and misjudge you
  • Your intellect is often downplayed
  • Your achievements are not recognized based on your ability but on your looks
  • Unwanted to dangerous attention from men
  • There’s this bar that has been set for you, and it’s usually unrealistic
  • Your mental health is at the bottom of the barrel (you’re not supposed to have to deal with that)
  • Pressure to preserve your good looks.

There are many more pros and cons to pretty privilege, and they affect our lives significantly, even more than some of us want to admit, but that is a topic for another day. The truth is, we cannot choose to see only one side of the coin; we have to be honest and acknowledge every part of it because that’s the only way to deal with things objectively.

Here are 5 Undeniable things about pretty privilege

  • It affects all genders: Don’t think that pretty privilege only applies to women because it doesn’t. Naturally, attractive people, irrespective of their gender, get more attention than other people. This attention can either be good or bad and is usually dependent on the people they are surrounded with.
  • You don’t necessarily need pretty privilege to be attractive; I’m sure you disagree, but just read what I have to say. We are all basically treated according to how we look, so the saying, the way you dress is the way you will be addressed rings true. In essence, if you want to have some form of pretty privilege, then you have to look the part. You cannot be dressed like a hobo and expect to be treated like a bombshell; not all of us can get away with that. So if you feel you look average or a little bit average, you have to put in some extra effort to experience pretty privilege.

Side Note: Don’t sell yourself short just because you don’t have nearly as much pretty or nice stuff as another person has. I really believe pretty privilege often makes people who don’t fit into that narrative feel less of themselves. It’s normal to want attention, especially when you dress up and feel good about yourself, but you have to learn to not tie your happiness to those things. 

Heck, there are days I look like the best thing mankind has ever experienced, but I don’t get any looks, and guess what? I don’t care because when I feel confident- it shows and, when I feel like something the cat dragged in or a very underpaid cartoon Villian – it shows. So what am I saying? Stop letting the way other people get attention, free stuff, money, better deals, or jobs affect the quality of your life. Sure, it will suck but move on. 

Find your style or what works for you and use it the same way pretty privileged people use theirs. Just don’t box yourself in because you don’t feel pretty enough to go to that party or wear that dress. Do it anyway; who knows, someone might take an interest in you, and every other thing will be history. Heed my advice because it will help you in the long run.

  • Pretty privilege is time-bound: Some people enjoyed pretty privileges as children, but as they became teenagers and puberty set in, the tides changed. Vice versa, some people never enjoyed pretty privileges until they were young adults, but even then, it’s usually not eternal. Beauty can fade, and the pressure to keep up can force people to take drastic measures that can harm them physically and emotionally. So don’t get hooked on looks; yeah, they sure open some doors and earn you some nice stuff, just don’t lose yourself in it. Be smart!
  • Pretty privilege can be abused- You! Yes, You! Quit being a pain in the derriere. Just because you enjoy these privileges doesn’t give you the free will to mistreat other people. Try to use your privileges to help out your friends and people around you, so they don’t feel terrible about themselves. Yes, we understand that you owe it to no one to help but come on, be nice; at least it can help you add philanthropy to your resume 😂😂.
  • Pretty privilege will never go away: The sooner you come to terms with the fact that pretty privilege is not going anywhere, the better for you. It is as old as time, so no matter how unfair you feel about it, it will always exist. It is easy for you to point out how bad it is or how it justifies unfair treatment, but hey, you’re only complaining because you don’t benefit from it. If the tables were turned, I don’t think you would be firmly against it (you know what I mean). Accept its existence, but don’t let it ruin your life. Don’t isolate yourself just because you don’t feel desirable or not an A+ in the looks department. There’s so much more life has to offer, so go enjoy it.

It is okay to want a little attention; everyone wants it but at varying degrees. Even though some people will bet their left kidneys that they are fine without it (especially guys and those hard-headed females out there). My point is, it is a normal human emotion to want to feel desirable. There’s nothing wrong with wanting a little bit of attention, especially when you haven’t experienced it before.

Everyone wants some good ol’ loving from time to time. So, don’t give up or have a defeatist mentality, i.e., I don’t have pretty privilege, so I don’t care about how I look; it’s not like anyone finds me desirable even when I dress up. You see this right here, DELETE IT! Remove that mentality entirely from your mind, appearance, and everything that concerns you.

Don’t box yourself simply because you’re not getting the attention you want. Change your environment if need be, look good no matter where you are headed, be more outgoing, network intensely. There are various things you can implement that will not only improve the quality of your life but make you happy and boost your confidence. You cannot be complaining about not being desirable when you are doing absolutely nothing to change that. 

PS: If you want a guy/girl to pay attention to you, then you have to be the kind of person they want to hang around with. You don’t necessarily need to change your entire self; just take note of what they like. You can also try to strike up a conversation to feel how they respond and think. This will help you make your decision to either like them or not faster. Most importantly, be your specs spec, i.e., Be the kind of person your crush can fall in love with. Your crush likes watching football, find out more about football (Check sports news), If they like to cook; learn some recipes. These things can literally give you an upper hand if you apply them well. Don’t sleep on this.

Word of advice: Don’t be fixated on gaining attention, validation, or favors from people because it gives room for messy things to happen. In short, Don’t be desperate. Enjoy your life, desire good things and work hard to get them if need be. There is so much this world has to offer you, don’t lose sight of the numerous possibilities by focusing on trivial things- Life is too short for that. So, Live!


I hope you enjoyed this article. Remember to like, comment, and share with your family and friends. See you next time.



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