By Kathryn Jezer-Morton
At AskMen, we're always telling guys that a little confidence and attention to grooming are all they really need to be more attractive to women. What we don't tell guys (because, let's face it, the truth is just too depressing) is that all the good posture and freshly shaven, razor-burn-free cheeks in the world can't compete with a guy whose signature on a piece of paper can deploy an army or transfer a billion dollars from one bank account to another. We all have our strengths, but some guys' strengths are stronger. It's a bummer.
Case in point: How does a man of diminutive stature, with a reputation for rudeness and an abiding love for Diet Coke (rather than, say, fine wine) win over a former supermodel and singer considered one of the world's sexiest women? Well, if the man in question is French President Nicolas Sarkozy, the answer is, easily. His marriage in 2008 to singer/model/actress Carla Bruni proved yet again that some clichés are true. Especially the one about power being an aphrodisiac.
Here's a list (surely a far from complete one, given the consistency of this rule) of powerful men who have successfully wooed beautiful creative women. A special shout-out goes to New York City Mayor Mike Bloomberg, who planted a kiss on Lady Gaga at midnight during last week's New Year's Eve celebration at Times Square. It doesn't really count as wooing, but we're pretty sure if it was, say, Cleveland's Mayor Frank G. Jackson standing there at midnight rather than Mayor Bloomberg, Lady Gaga would have moved in for a hug instead. No hard feelings, Mayor Jackson. You know how it goes.
Ellen Barkin and Ron Perelman
Ellen Barkin has the sexiest stems of any woman over the age of 40 we've ever seen, and that includes Tina Turner. The actress and avid Twitter user was married from 2000 to 2006 to Ron Perelman, a business magnate whose financial worth via his holding company MacAndrews & Forbes hovers around $12 billion. He has a financial interest in cosmetics, tech, entertainment and more. He also happens to be bald, but when you're quite literally a cigar-puffing international mogul, you've probably made peace with your hairline. The two had a contentious divorce that cost Perelman millions, but we never said power's seductive effects had to last forever.
Andre Balazs and Uma Thurman, among others
Hotelier Andre Balazs is a pretty good-looking man, we'll admit. Even if he was working the desk at the local highway-side La Quinta Inn, he'd probably still have a girlfriend. But she wouldn't be Uma Thurman, nor would she be Chelsea Handler, Renee Zellweger or Courtney Love. OK, maybe Courtney, but not the others. And the real Andre Balazs has indeed dated the women mentioned here. His development company owns the Chateau Marmont, all those fancy Standard Hotels in all those different cities (the only one we've been to is the one in New York, and, yes, it deserves the hype), as well as some upscale residential developments in New York. Presumably he puts his lady friends up in style for free at his hotels if they need a place to crash. The La Quinta dude simply cannot compete.
Sofia Vergara and Nick Loeb
Nick Loeb is a former candidate for the U.S. Senate from Florida. Taken alone, that's not a credential with much impact. But he also happens to be the son of former U.S. Ambassador to Denmark John Loeb Jr., and his cousin is Edgar Bronfman Jr., of the Seagram family fortune. Going back a little further into the family history, Nick Loeb's grandmother was Frances Lehman, part of the Lehman Brothers banking family. In other words, he's a man you might call a scion and would definitely call a multimillionaire. Sofia Vergara would probably argue that she fell for him for reasons that have nothing to do with his personal wealth and pedigree, and we're sure that's true. But there's a reason why Ralph Lauren has made a fortune making clothing that helps regular folks look like they might have gone to a fancy private school once: Pedigree is almost as sexy as power.
JFK and Marilyn Monroe
Lately sex scandals can ruin a political career, but JFK's reputation has not been tarnished by his posthumous association with Marilyn Monroe. (Maybe people knew it was going on at the time? We're not sure -- it all happened before we were born. Old people, did you know about it back then? Please let us know in the comments. And by comments, we mean the place where people respond to the article at the bottom of the webpage. No, don't worry, no one will steal your identity if you enter your email address in the commenter signup procedure.)
Anyway, as far as we're concerned, JFK's reputation was burnished -- not tarnished! -- by his dalliance with Marilyn Monroe. He may have taken his position of power and influence a little too far when it came to seducing women, but Marilyn was a conquest that we'd like to think very few presidents would be able to resist.
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