Accompanied you around today. Great posts!
First point, that I mention simply FYI as I find it silly, but there
were many psychological experiments to test beauty. For instance they
show babies a picture of someone and measure how many seconds
(milliseconds) they look at the picture before moving their eyes.
Supposedly the prettier they find the person the more they look.
Anyway, in these test I think they tried to prove that certain
symmetries are considered objectively beautiful. That a symmetric face
is better and so on. Whatever.
Second point is a bit more complicated. I will try to describe it in a short manner, but that will mean it will not be very precise. I would like to distinguish between beauty as an image, as in a picture, and beauty in movement and in life. The first is what some might call physical but I would say it is mostly symbolic beauty, while the second is effected a lot by character.
For example, I think a happy person will be beautiful in all cultures. I think very quickly being around them they would take the place of the beautiful no matter what culture they are from and have arrived to. On the other hand, simply as an image, the usual image of a beautiful woman is actually a sad one.
Of course, what I'm saying is somewhat superficial. I mean a deeply happy person, not simply someone very cheerful, seemingly happy. I think these people would also look beautiful as an image in their own culture, as I think they would naturally, unconsciously, gravitate to take that role. They would radiate it in some way.
But then, also, it is a 2-way street. If someone for some reasons would not be good looking in their own culture (genetics/accident), it changes the character.
There is here some confusion between attractiveness and beauty, but both I don't know to exactly say the difference and in any case it would be too long. Also, the effect is from the entire character together, as an atom, and not simply this trait or another.
Characters are what is attractive, and though it is true that it won't be immediate, it won't be from an image, I do think that is what passes and is objective in a way. It might take a bit though. While beauty as an image is more immediate,and is very culture dependent as it is mostly symbolic. (By symbolic I mean that something symbolizes something else, like kings used to wear crowns to represent that they are the king, or some today walk with long elaborate canes to symbolize they are pimps. It is the same way with people's body, such as blond hair etc.) Like muscular men represent strong ones in a very specific context (for instance the American one) while not necessarily elsewhere, or some people can claim evolutionary ground, whatever.
Now it definitely doesn't work the other direction. That is, beautiful people do not necessarily, ahem, ahem, have great characters. And then would they be beautiful in a different culture - not at all. They can build themselves as a picture, go to plastic surgeons, and they will definitely be beautiful in their own culture, but not more. (though well, that is enough no. I have nothing against that.) Their beauty is not objective.
The post is a bit confused but I think it's point is rather simple.