What Is Beauty?

We often speak of beauty in different ways. Some would say that beauty is subjective, while some others would say it is objective. Beauty is commonly defined as a subjective feature of things which makes these things aesthetically pleasing to see. These things include sunsets, landscapes, humans and other artistic works. Beauty, along with beauty, is perhaps the most important theme of aesthetics, among the various branches of aesthetics.


We have touched upon beauty in our introductory articles on philosophy and aesthetics. In this article we shall continue to discuss it from an objective point of view, that of an aesthetician. Our aim is not to discuss whether beauty exists or not; rather we will try to explore the idea of beauty through the eyes of an aesthetician.

Aesthetic appreciation may concern many things, such as beauty in its various forms, including beauty in architecture, literature and film. However, when talking about beauty in a more personal context, the person most likely to respond is the beholder. A good example is a person who may worry about having ugly skin, yet cannot look at anything else but her fair skin. This person is a beauty in aesthetic appreciation. A person who may worry about her pretty face but cannot look at her face may not be a beautiful person, because only the beholder can see her beauty.

Beauty has many connotations, depending on the culture and society we live in. For instance, in America, beauty often refers to physical attributes, such as being tall and thin. A physically attractive person can feel beautiful, without having to put too much thought into it. On the other hand, in most other countries and cultures, beauty is often related to emotions, or a perceived overall state of health or well-being. A healthy person, for instance, may feel beautiful because he or she is tall and thin. A sick or diseased person may feel beautiful because she or he has long, beautiful hair.

But beauty in the beholder must not be judged harshly. Beauty is a subjective concept, which means that what a person sees as beautiful is not necessarily what other people will consider to be beautiful. We all possess different perspectives and ideas of beauty. What one person may consider beautiful or unattractive, while another person may find it very appealing. Beauty is a personal concept, which means that it depends entirely on the individual.

The definition of beauty varies between people, just as it does among cultures and countries. Beauty is important to all of us, but there is no universally agreed upon beauty standard. Some people may look at your body type and see only muscle and bone, while another may be more attracted to your eyes and smile. Your own sense of beauty is only just as valid as anyone else’s. So, if you are looking to yourself as the beauty-besoul/model, then you need to be careful to not let others tell you otherwise.