Beautiful Boys

by Lisa Runge

Zac Efron

The Jonas Brothers

Robert Pattinson

These young pretty lads figure prominently on news rags, gossip blogs and magazines. But we can’t blame the media…it is simply giving the public what it wants. And apparently, people want feminine-looking young men. Mostly teenaged people. But throw in a few from the minivan majority 30 and 40-somethings too. Yes, they are buying, reading, and poring over the pictures in the news rags and magazines featuring these young pups.

Back in my day it was Nick Rhodes from Duran Duran. Remember him? I can’t tell you how many teenaged girls I knew had a big crush on him.

I was more of a John Taylor type myself…ooh, flashing us his sexy smile all too infrequently in music videos. But here’s the thing…he wasn’t wearing full-on eye makeup complete with mascara, eyeshadow, and eyeliner. Okay maybe eyeliner. But in a masculine way.

The point is, what is it about men wearing makeup…or at least looking pretty enough to LOOK like they wear makeup so attractive to women? One of them is a vampire, I get that…very sexual in nature, so it makes sense that Robert Pattinson is a popular little goth. Zac Efron, a.k.a. “Lipgloss” just completely goes over my head. I hear he also has a hard time not looking at himself and checking his hair. That being said I would kill for his eyelashes. And the Jonas Brothers? I laugh! Sexually attracted to juniors who have just reached post-peachfuzz? Not going to happen. I’d feel dirty and cougar-ish. I kind of do already, just writing it.

Which brings me to my next point, or perhaps just a stark realization: I am not their target market. That may be obvious, yes. But…what saddens me and my sense of importance in society doesn’t matter, because these little squirts are making money without me, without my support or say-so. They are selling records and movies and TV shows without a dollar spent from someone like me.

Hmmm, would you look at that…now that I can see the pictures of John Taylor, he really IS pretty isn't he?!!! Perhaps I do get it after all...


  1. Yes, but John Taylor was a product of his times, when every pop star - male or female - wore makeup. His face has gorgeous lines all on its own. Plus he could groove, baby.

  2. Don't get the whole pretty boy thing but I do admit to having a thing for a younger Rod Stewart he he.

  3. Back in the day - I only had eyes for Simon Le Bon! I think the pretty boys of today appeal to an even younger age demographic. I think the key to their physical appeal is they have to look soulful and sensitive but capable of being bad at the same time. It's that powerful mix that I went for at that age. ;)

  4. Great post Lisa. I've been researching this age demographic for a YA novel that's been churning in my head. What's the appeal? It's all about the eyes for me.

    I also grew up in the days of Duran-Duran. (I'm with you about Simon, Joanna.) And dare I say it... Donny Osmond and David Cassidy were also hot back in my day, too.

    Now I really feel old.


  5. Thing is too, the boys of Duran Duran weren't teenagers...(were they?) They were in their 20s at least! Yes, kids today have strange taste...not like us at all...LOL

  6. Lol. In my time, it was boy bands. Boyzone, Westlife, Take That. Backstreet Boys.

    Then again, those guys were young but they were closer to 20 or already crossed that line.

    I don't understand the pretty boy fascination either. It was always the grittier that won my attention, like Kevin Richardson in Backstreet Boys. Ronan Keating of Boyzone was actually handsome, not just pretty.

    Yes, kids have strange taste indeed!

    A boy who's crossed into manhood of the early twenties I can understand (think Rafel Nadal and Chace Crawford), but the Jonas Brothers? *big big eyes*

    Loved the post, Lisa. It was fun!



  7. Great post!

    Just the other night on Life On Mars, a 1981 character had posters from her childhood on the wall featuring David Cassidy!

    I do think it's like Joanna says, they look soulful and sensitive with a touch of 'bad boy'.

    Loved this.


  8. John Taylor was 22 the first time I noticed him with his wine-colored hair and floopy bangs. Big Sigh. Wanted to marry that boy big time. I blame him for my love of all things English.

    He's still a good looking man, even if the lifestyle's marked him.

    And thank God Robert Pattison and the boys from Supernatural are in their twenties (in fact, I think Jensen Ackles just turned 30) because I'd feel super creepy if they weren't.

    As for Zac, he doesn't do it for me, but the more that kid on Friday Night Lights, who's playing Gambit in the Wolverine movie is a doll.


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