12 clear signs a guy is intimidated by your looks

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If there’s one thing men don’t like, it’s being intimidated by women.

Wondering why a certain guy is acting so strange around you? You know you’re beautiful, but for some reason, that seems to be a bad thing because the guys you talk to aren’t usually immediately comfortable with you.

There’s nothing wrong with you — it’s just that they’re intimidated.

In this article, we’ll go into 12 signs a guy is intimidated by your looks.

1) He was scared to approach you at first

Imagine being at a crowded party, looking for people to strike up a conversation with.

You meet the eyes of a guy and you can see that it’s registering in his head how attractive he finds you.

You expect him to come up to you to make the first move, but he drops your gaze only to glance at you from time to time, not saying anything and you know he wants to make a move but doesn’t do it.

Don’t worry — you didn’t do anything wrong. It’s probably just a sign that he’s intimidated by your looks.

You might be wondering why he’s intimidated if he wants to approach you anyway. It might be because pretty people look successful and feeling like he might not measure up to that success can hold him back from making a move.

Guys are scared of rejection, who isn’t?

But in this case, since you’re particularly attractive, he thinks you have your pick of men and couldn’t possibly give him the time of day no matter how much he wants it.

Fear of rejection can make him conscious of his own looks, magnifying yours and making it intimidating to approach you because he doesn’t want to find out that you aren’t interested.

The same can be said for if he does end up talking to you, flirting but never asking you out.

He’ll be thinking that you can get anyone you want because of how good-looking you are, so he’d rather not fail and feel humiliated if you say no.

2) He seems nervous around you

Another one of the signs that a guy is intimidated by your looks is nervous body language around you.

As the age-old saying goes, actions speak louder than words — and if his actions are obviously nervous and shy, it’s a pretty loud message.

Examples of body language for nervous attraction are fidgeting, avoiding eye contact, excessive laughter (but don’t worry, you’re funny too), and blushing.

For example, he finally works up the nerve to come to you and start a conversation. You notice that he looks at you when you aren’t looking or he laughs at everything you say (not just your jokes).

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This is a big sign that he thinks you’re good-looking and doesn’t know what to do about it.

It’s just the truth: people get anxious around attractive people. This doesn’t always mean that it’s negatively affecting them in a huge way; it mostly just means that they don’t know what to do with themselves when faced with good-looking people.

Much like in the rom-com kind of way that the guy gets all tongue-tied and clumsy around a girl he meets for the first time, if he doesn’t seem to be on steady footing when he’s talking to you, he might be intimidated by how good-looking you are.

3) He tries too hard

If he feels like he’s less attractive than you are, he might try over-compensating for that by puffing up his personality to catch up to your level.

Trust me. You’ll notice it.

He’ll show you broad displays of false confidence to compensate for the fact that he thinks you’re better than him in some way. He’ll brag about himself all the time, talk about all of his accomplishments and how he regularly goes to the gym, that kind of stuff.

If he wants to seem as hot as you are, he’ll do his best to use the body language that comes with it, like looking self-confident.

This isn’t necessarily a bad thing. It just means you’ll have to put up with some feather-fluffing.

It might come across as obvious faking or masterful illusions that you might believe — and he’s not really trying to deceive you in the manipulative sense. He just wants to feel as important as you are, something that comes with wanting to impress someone who you find attractive.

If you get into a relationship with him, this might mean that he won’t be as transparent with his true feelings because he wants to maintain the image of complete control and perfection. This one’s an actual red flag and something you need to watch out for in case things get serious.

In general, if he’s intimidated by your looks, he’ll try not to be by making himself feel bigger to mask his insecurity.

4) He compares other guys to himself

There’s a concept in psychology called social comparison and there are two kinds: downward (which is when you compare yourself to people you perceive as worse off than you) and upward (which is comparing yourself to people you feel are above you).

Constantly comparing other guys to how great he is — downward comparison — makes him feel bigger and better; like I said, he feels like he needs this to get on your level and that’s one of the signs that a guy is intimidated by your looks.

For example, you could bump into a friend together and, as soon as you’re not within earshot, he’ll sneak into a conversation that it looks like your friend doesn’t work out as much as he does.

He could also bring up his work achievements when you mention a guy friend you have that recently got promoted.

Small things like these show that he’s intimidated by your looks, so he’ll compare downwards to make himself feel better about it.

To an extent, it’s being judgmental toward others. This is a trait that people don’t usually find attractive, so he might even be accomplishing the opposite when trying to get somewhere with you.

But does his self-esteem get boosted by doing this?

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Psychology suggests that it depends on the state of his confidence, to begin with. It might be helping him feel better but it could also not be the healthiest way to do that.

5) He compares himself to “better” guys

On the other hand, upward comparison is comparing yourself to someone you perceive as better off and is another sign that he’s intimidated by your looks.

Like I said, he thinks that because you’re good-looking, you can get anyone you want.

Because of this, he’ll always feel like you want the rich guy or the really physically attractive guy and he’ll beat himself up for not being like those guys because he thinks you can do better.

This, he might not open up about.

If he feels inferior to another guy, he wouldn’t tell you because that risks showing a vulnerability about his confidence. Instead, you might know it because he might slip and look jealous or say things like “I bet he doesn’t have to worry about _____.”

With all the comparing, he might feel like he doesn’t measure up to those kinds of guys. He might feel like he’s not attractive enough, not smart enough, not good enough in the bedroom — all things he deems important for a good relationship.

Basically, he’s attacking his own self-esteem because he feels small compared to you and to the “better” guys he thinks will stand a better chance with you. He thinks he doesn’t have what it takes to keep you with him, so the comparison is unavoidable.

6) He’s threatened by an alpha woman

Another one of the signs that a guy is intimidated by your looks is when he shows that he’s threatened by an alpha woman.

People expect pretty people to be successful, which is why he might see you as a dominant alpha woman.

Because alpha women are independent and know how to be alone, he’ll feel like you don’t need him because he sees you as the type of woman who doesn’t need to be with him all the time.

Not all guys like independent women. They like feeling needed and sought after, so he might be intimidated by your looks if that means you’re the more dominant person between the two of you.

This is another thing he might not be 100% open about, because who wants to admit that they feel inferior?

Instead, he might be more subtle about it, like acting cold whenever you ask for alone time or picking a fight when he thinks you’re working too much (when in reality, you’re just working).

Guys tend to feel worse about themselves when their partner succeeds because they see it as their own failure, even when they’re not in direct competition with you.

This is why your unapologetic confidence might be a threat to him, especially if his own self-esteem and confidence levels are low.

7) He always says he’s out of his league

Has he ever said that out loud, whether with you or with your mutual friends? Has it also made you uncomfortable when he does?

Because of your attractiveness, he perceives you as someone of a higher social status, which explains why he’s intimidated.

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If you’re not in a relationship and you’ve only just met, it might even be cause for him not to approach you at all. If he thinks you’re out of the class of people he’s expected to date, he might not bother trying.

He’ll flirt with you, sure, but he might not try asking you out because he thinks he’s reaching and doesn’t want to fall flat on his face.

In relationships, there’s the popular concept of “the reacher” and “the settler”: the reacher is the partner who is dating up and the settler is the one who dates down. In this case, he thinks you’re the settler and he’s the reacher; because he’s given himself that label, it makes him feel bad about himself.

If he’s labeled you as the settler, he might put you on a pedestal. This will become obvious to you when you’re around mutual friends; he might make jokes like “she’s way out of my league” or “why does she even date me?”.

He may be saying these things in a lighthearted way so that everyone can make light of it, but he might actually be feeling that way deep down.

8) He doesn’t want to make you unhappy

Ever heard of social media influencers? Notice how they physically look.

People see pretty people as having a specific influence that less attractive people don’t have. Because of this, there’s a fear of disapproval from the people with this influence.

If he’s going out of his way to make sure you’re never unhappy with him, it could be another one of the signs he’s intimidated by your looks. He’s thinking that if he pisses you off, you’ll badmouth him to your social circle and his reputation will be ruined.

More importantly, he’s overly conscious about his rep with you.

He thinks you’ll judge him because of how high in the social ladder he perceives you to be and he doesn’t want to do anything to jeopardize his “good standing”.

9) He’s competitive for your attention

Because he thinks you have your pick of men, he’ll do what he can to fight for your affections if he really likes you.

If he’s still trying to win you over, he might ask you out on a date after date to make sure your attention doesn’t wander off to other men.

In the same way, if you’re already in a relationship, he might get easily jealous because he feels like you can leave him for someone more attractive at any time. For example, he could get visibly annoyed if you mention a guy friend offhandedly or he’d send you a bigger gift if another guy gives you a platonic one.

This could easily become toxic behavior, especially if you enter a serious relationship with him. Imagine being on the phone with your parents and having him act up because it means less time with him.

He thinks he has to fight for your time of day because he assumes that people are lined up to please you, so if he chooses to enter the competition, he’ll bring out everything in his arsenal to win.

10) He tries to tear you down

This is the most aggressive sign that he’s intimidated by your looks.

Because of your beauty, you tug on his self-esteem and confidence.

“Am I good enough? What does she see in me? Won’t she eventually leave me? When?”

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Because of the internal conflict, he might lash out at you by attacking your confidence to make him feel better about his own. He might say things like “you’re not as beautiful as everyone says you are” or “there are more beautiful girls out there”.

He might try to tear you down to drag you down to the level he perceives himself to be on so that it’s easier for him to interact with you.

While this isn’t the most effective way to win your heart, he might not be able to help it because he’s thinking about helping himself. He wants to control the narrative, a power he thinks you inherently have because of your social influence.

11) He’s controlling

If you’re in a relationship, another sign he’s intimidated by your looks is that he’s controlling.

This could mean anything from limiting who you see to dictating what you wear; however it is, he wants to keep you to himself because he thinks that the more people see of you, the more they’ll want to steal you from him.

This one is definitely a relationship red flag because not all men are like this. It’s mostly the insecure ones who are controlling, contrary to popular belief that it’s the confident men who feel like they should have too much of a say in their partner’s life.

He feels like you have more social power over him, so he’ll do what he can to reassert his own power by being controlling.

12) He ignores you

Unfortunately, this is another sign that he feels threatened by how attractive you are; he’ll just flat out ignore your existence.

If he feels like he can’t measure up to you or handle you, he won’t even bother being shy about it. He’ll just exit the situation to keep him from wanting to make a move because he’s too intimidated to do anything about his attraction.

This means a certain lack of emotional maturity, so if you’re planning to go after him, maybe reconsider if that’s the kind of person you want to be around.

In summary

There are several signs a guy is intimidated by your looks.

If you find that he is, remember that it’s not your fault and you didn’t do anything wrong; it’s just something that comes naturally from trying to approach and date an attractive person.

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