Hot in a Gay Way

Girls like girls and boys like girls, but these are rarely the same girls.

Feature by Kirsty Logan | 11 Mar 2010

There is some overlap between queer and straight taste, obviously; most people like clear skin, a healthy figure, and a nice smile. Everyone's taste is different, and no woman is 'every lesbian's dream' or 'every straight man's dream'. But an attractive queer girl is not the same as an attractive straight girl.

The average 30-year-old British woman spends £253 every month on fake tan, fake hair, fake nails, fake smells, fake breasts, and other 'beauty' treatments. (By the way, that adds up to £180,000 in a lifetime – you could buy a yacht!) This dyke says that these things do not make you beautiful.

Glamour girls like Jordan and Jodie Marsh spend a fortune on their appearances, and while I'm sure they're both lovely ladies, the thought of kissing them makes me vomit into my mouth a bit. The taste of that greasy lipstick, the crunchy feel of hair extensions, the knowledge that those nice soft breasts are just bags of salt water – sorry, had to run to the bathroom there. Some of this is just personal taste: I like curvy girls with short blonde hair and glasses. But I don't think I'm the only dyke with an aversion to fakeness.

The previous winners of Miss Gay UK have cropped hair, B-cups, and shiny cheeks. They win their sashes wearing t-shirts, jeans, and trilbys. They're all very cute, but none would appear on the cover of FHM or Maxim in frilly undies and a vacant stare. Yet they've been voted as the most attractive gay women in Britain.

Tegan and Sara, twentysomething twins from Canada, are the darlings of the lesbian music scene. Every queer girl I know has a crush on one or both of them – they are identical, after all. With their asymmetric haircuts and make-up-free faces, they are most definitely hot in a gay way. But would heterosexual men find them attractive?

Spend ten minutes in your local gay club (any longer and the Mariah Carey dance remixes will drive you to madness): you'll notice a distinct absence of females in high heels and low-cut dresses tottering to the toilets every few minutes to reapply their lipstick. That's not to say that we dykes don't make an effort: the precise sweep of that choppy hairstyle over the left eye took hours, and those skinny jeans don't sit too low on our hips all by themselves. The days of dungarees and hairy armpits are long gone; it takes work to be a queer hottie. What I'm trying to say is that many lesbians try to look like a slightly different version of themselves, rather than a painted and teetering doll.

I hope you hetero ladies are paying attention to the next bit, because it's got blokes in it. In researching this column I asked a few of the men in my life – my brother, my friend's boyfriend, the chef at work – what they thought about fake beauty. Some didn't care either way; if a girl was attractive and interesting, it didn't matter which of her body parts were real. But when I dug deeper, I discovered that guys just don't get the fake look. I spent fifteen minutes listening to complaints ranging from "Lipstick tastes bogging" to "I hate when girls complain that they can't walk properly in their shoes" to "What’s the point of fake eyelashes anyway?"

These men can't speak for all of mankind, but I can't interview all of mankind so they'll just have to do. And mankind says: we don't care. Men want you to be interesting, funny, smart, and look like you've had a wash fairly recently. It also helps if you can manage to laugh at a few of their jokes, however awful. Maybe it would be better to take some of that £253 you spend on beauty products every month, and put it towards a yacht instead. Just an idea.