- Rep Power
Why women want to change their man
She wants him to change, but he doesn't want to budge. (Thinkstock)
Shane Warne's not the only man to be given a makeover by their woman. It seems in-built in women to do so. But why? We talk to the experts to find out.
Spare a thought for Shane Warne. The Aussie bowler has undergone a radical metamorphosis at the hands of his famous-faced partner Liz Hurley. In just a few weeks Warne was transformed from a tubby, hard-partying lad into a svelte and stylish new man; but for better or worse he's not the only bloke who's been given a makeover by his partner. Our experts reveal why.
According to a recent survey conducted by men's grooming brand Wilkinson Sword, seven in ten women admit to giving their man a spruce up within weeks of meeting them. In addition, 60 per cent of women questioned by the survey also claimed that they 'knew best' when it came to how their other half looked, while 40 per cent felt it was a woman's job to makeover their man.
Why are they changing us?
It's clear then that our partners are intent on changing the way we look, but why? According to Dr Gian Gonzaga, senior director of research at eHarmony it's all to do with proving your worth. He says, "The popular stereotype is that women want to change their man and get him into shape, and to some extent it may be true. Often women want to make men prove they are worthy of a relationship, so they test out their partners by pushing them to make changes or make big displays of commitment."
So what to us men might look like a power trip on our partners' part, might actually be more of a support mechanism; something that can help them feel more secure in the relationship.
Relationship and behavioural expert Marisa Peer agrees. She tells MSN: "Women like to improve their men in order to increase their own value. We all know women judge each other on their clothes, style and looks; but they also judge other women's boyfriends in the same way. Therefore when women change their men, they are making him more of a catch; because for them, elevating their guy's worth in terms of attractiveness, coolness etc. also elevates their own sense of worth."
They're only trying to help
Of course it's also true that your spouse might just have your best interests at heart. They might simply dislike the way you look, dress or even smell; which isn't necessarily a bad thing.
We all have our bad habits, and most of us wouldn't know where to even start when it comes to touching up our appearance. This is where a little constructive criticism can help, as the outside input from your nearest and dearest can ultimately have a positive impact on your persona.
"If your girlfriend has a good sense of style why not let her help you, after all she may actually be improving your looks," Marisa Peer says. "A lot of men look better when women add input to their wardrobe. If your partner is in the know about cuts, fits, and fabrics, and wants to help, then a makeover at her hands can actually be healthy."
What if you don't want to change?
Of course your partner may only be trying to help, but what if you don't want to change? Should you resist or simply go with the flow? There's a distinct difference between your partner trying to help you and wanting to change who you are. In the end it comes down to personal choice. You need to decide if your partner is only trying to help, or if the man makeover is just the tip of the iceberg and a sign of something else that's wrong in the relationship. As always the best thing to do is talk.
"Ask her directly why she wants to change you so much and listen to her reply," Marisa advises. It's important that men are aware of the wider implications this might have on your relationship. Dr Gian Gonzaga says: "...partners need to learn to accept each other's flaws because in the long run, trying to change them will only backfire. If you ignore the things you don't like about your partner, and think you can change them, you are likely to be disappointed in the end."
The familiar power struggles between partners is of course at the centre of many a man's resistance to a makeover. The key is deciding if your partner's only trying to help, or if there's something more serious behind their plans to give your image an overhaul.
Each situation needs to be tackled on its own individual merits and it's up to you to decide if you're willing to accept your partner's help, or if their incessant attempts to improve your image will change the dynamic of your relationship for the worse.
"Respect and compromise is the key," Marisa concludes. "Allow your partner to have her say, but keep it between the two of you and make sure it's only advice. Just make sure she knows it's non-negotiable that you can still have your washed out misshapen T-shirts to wear around the house."