Billions of dollars are spent world-wide on cosmetics, hair-styling, plastic surgery, face -lifting, hair-grafting, herbal treatment for improving one's looks. Being attractive is personally pleasing, besides giving one a head start over others who are not so blessed. Many products are sold with the help of bright and good looking faces. Generally speaking, there is a premium on good looks. No wonder, so much attention is being paid over improving one's looks.
Faces of intelligent people glow as do the faces of most young people. lt is said that even the children of most animals look nice when they are young. Unfortunately, one cannot stay young forever. So, jf one is not endowed with natural good looks, the question is, can this glow be created or enhanced by any other process, other than by superficial external aids ?
The answer is Yes, since there is a connection between one's mind and the facial appearance. There is an inner glow in everyone which comes through if one is clear-minded. There is a verse in Bhagavad-Geeta, "O son of Bharata, as the sun illuminates all the universe, so does the living entity, one within the body, illuminate the entire body by consciousness" (13.34).
And consciousness is of the mind. If the mind is clear, the soul's illumination comes through as a glow on the face. Clear mind is same as a controlled mind. Unfortunately, not many are fortunate enough to have controlled minds ; if anything, most people are preoccupied with endless thoughts. And, if the thoughts are of the negative nature, one's face would show darkness - the opposite of glow. A person with a controlled mind is not preoccupied. On the other hand, he is very alert.
Of course, positive attitude helps, which is being optimistic, determined to succeed with confidence in one's abilities. There is a connection between intelligence and positive attitude since being negative has no benefit whatsoever. Happiness, which is the state of one's mind, also comes through as glow on the face. On the other hand, unhappiness also comes through in a negative way. This reminds me of a verse in the Bhagavad-Geeta : "One whose happiness is within, who is active and rejoices within, is actually the perfect mystic" (5.24).
Such purity of thoughts helps. There is a connection between innocence and purity. Innocence should not be confused with ignorance but should be taken as not being conniving. The proof of this statement is in the fact that the face of a person with nothing to hide comes through as clear and innocent. Dirty minds can generally be spotted in the same way as a thief with shifty eyes. Fears, anxieties, worries, etc are enemies of good looks.
Too much enjoyment of the senses or even such a desire may dull one's appearance. In another verse in the Bhagavad-Geeta, Lord Krishna states : "An intelligent person does not take part in the sources of misery, which are due to contact with the material senses" (5.22). Excessive enjoyment of one's senses also may affect one's health, which in turn would have some effect on one's looks. Healthy people have a natural glow on their faces. One can see the evidence of this statement by comparing the face of a person immediately before and after a nice workout. Then celibacy helps ; the saintly persons, who practice celibacy, have generally a bright aura on their faces.
Therefore, if one wishes to improve one's looks, it is important that one strengthens one's mind by controlling it. Internal purity would help the natural glow on the face while excessive sense enjoyment would tend to lessen it. A satisfied person looks better, as does a good person. Good health and happiness are friends of nice looks, whereas evil thoughts and acts are its destroyers.
To conclude, it is important that we realize the fact that good looks and a healthy glow are better achieved by the above processes than by any external aids. In any case, the external aids are artificial and temporary, whereas the internal processes are more of a permanent nature. Needless to say, by internal processes, even older people can, in fact, have a glow on their faces.