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Tanner Guzy @tannerguzy
, 18 tweets, 3 min read Read on Twitter
I was walking out of the gym the other day when I saw a woman talking to one of the guys at the front desk.

She had a great build and was wearing short cutoffs and a plaid button-up.

Kind of like a modern Daisy Duke.

Her legs were lean, long, and tan.
As I was walking past she turned around and I was surprised by her face.

What my mind had pictured was a woman in her mid to late 20's.

That's the story the body told.

But her face looked like it was 50.

I was genuinely shocked - the inconsistency was striking.
Right away I knew what she was - a bikini competitor (we have five or six of them at our gym).

What's so interesting about it is that the women who are in their mid 30's often end up having the faces of 50 year olds.
Their bodies look 10 years younger than they are, but their faces look 15 years older.
I can attribute it to three different things:

- Little fat in their face makes their cheeks and eyes look more gaunt

- They're always tan and a lot of them have skin that's showing signs of that

- There's a lot of lip injections, botox, and plastic surgery going on
Essentially, their faces look older because they take on all the same characteristics of older women who are trying to regain their youth.
So what gives?

Why are they making themselves look worse instead of better?

They're experiencing what many people in very insular tribes or sub cultures go through

An Aesthetic Feedback Loop
Most of these women live in a world where the standard of beauty is the professional bikini model.

That's who they follow on social media.

That's who they consider to be their competition.

That's who they want to be.
And it often comes to the exclusion of any or every other standard of beauty.

And in that tribe, being show-ready looks very different than what most of us consider to be beautiful.
AND, because intra-tribal status competition is something that exists in every subculture their standards of beauty are taken to extremes.

You see the same thing with the men in the body building world.
Their perceptions of "small" and "jacked" are very different from the average person or even the average athlete.

Because they're competing with other top tier men, their standards of size and proportion are incredibly removed from what the rest of the world sees as appealing.
And it's not just the fitness community.

You see menswear nerds constantly taking things to new and ridiculous levels - not to look better at work, but to compete with other menswear nerds on Reddit or Style Forum.

You see it with SJW's and their pursuit of ugliness as beauty.
You even see it in private schools with uniforms - the way in which those uniforms are worn is often very specific to how those kids will measure and meet out status amongst each other.
Now, these aesthetic feedback loops aren't necessarily a bad thing

But most of us don't lead lives where our entire identity is built off of one tribe.

We aren't just the music we listen to, our political leanings, or the types of workouts we prefer.
We're a mix of our work, family, religious, hobby, and lifestyle tribes.

And if we lean too far into the aesthetics of one, it often can have negative effects on how we interact with all the other cultures we're a part of.
Women like these bikini competitors lose sight of what beauty looks like for everything but that particular tribe.

And, while it may mean success in that singular pursuit,

It can also mean setbacks in others.

It can be a tricky balance.
If you focus too little on tribe then you're perceived (and treated) as an outcast.

But if you get too insular with it, you get into a serious feedback loop and have the negatives there as well.
Also, for all of you getting hung up on why they look that way, that’s not the point. What matters is they willingly look that way because of the tribe.
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