The original "It" girl, Clara Bow. She wasn't the prettiest, sexiest, smartest or most talented, but she had "It". It - that indefinable quality that transcends physical attractiveness and yet, is more compelling than sex appeal or modern day good looks. Well, that's what the studio wanted the public to believe! But maybe they were absolutely onto something!
"It" is far more to be preferred than mere attractiveness. Because, frankly, looks fade but "It" stays with you to the grave and beyond!
Humphrey Bogart was NOT traditionally good looking, but there's no question he had "It". Can you picture Bogie wringing his hands over his overbite? Did he ever give the impression that he wished he was a bit taller or more muscular? Not on your life! He was unapologetic about who he was. He didn't try to hide his flaws because he didn't see them AS flaws! BINGO! That's "It"!
Sense of fun
"It" people laugh! They have fun! They find humor in themselves, others and everything! Probably because they're not overly self conscious, worried about how they look or what others are thinking. They seem to be able to get outside of themselves and just have fun! And that fun is infectious, making others gravitate to their presence! Does ANYONE seem less self conscious than the Divine Miss M? My favorite Bette Midler line? "That's enough about me! Let's talk about you. What do you think of me?!" She's hilarious and every girl's girlfriend!
Not afraid to be different...
Though not TRYING to be different. Anyone can be different for the sake of being different, but where's the originality in that? How is that being true to oneself? Johnny Depp could've remained just a pretty boy actor in a sea of good looking faces in Hollywood. But he was different and he embraced those quirks. It's obvious watching him, that he doesn't have an affected quirkiness. His is genuine and real! How else can a 50 year old man pull of the looks he does?! Because he has "It"!
An independence from the physical
Nowadays, it seems to ALWAYS come back to the physical. In our struggle to stand out, we end up blending in. We try to duplicate someone else's "It" only to lose our own. That's why celebrity faces aren't as interesting as they used to be. Because they've been morphed into an amalgamation of what the press says are the most desired and beautiful qualities. Big lips are in, ergo every actress is running to get lipids injected into her pucker. Youth is "in" and maturity is "out"? No problem. There's a doctor who can take care of that for you! So you'll have no unique characteristics....who cares? You'll look "young"!
"Beauty is what's on the inside, and it reflects in your eyes. It's not something physical." Sophia Loren
Sophia Loren has never seemed to get caught up in her sex appeal. She knows that there is far more to her than her figure. And it shows. It truly is captured in her eyes. And interestingly enough, as she's let go of this dependence on and definition of sex appeal, she is even sexier than ever!
And what does the oldest woman ever to appear in the iconic Pirelli calendar (2007 she was 72!) have to say about youth and it's appeal?
"There is a fountain of youth: it is your mind, your talents, the creativity you bring to your life and the lives of people you love. When you learn to tap this source, you will truly have defeated age."
Listen, there's always going to be someone prettier, smarter, slimmer, more talented, more muscular, sexier.....basically more ANYTHING than you.
But "It" isn't in any of those things! "It" is being unapologetically and unabashedly YOU!