Phoenixism's post, entitled, "The Plain Jane and the culture of artificiality," addresses this very issue and raises the question of whether what men think they want is preventing them from finding what they actually seek, relationally. This excerpt from ths post boldly points out the truth:
We men are fond of sanctifying the the gilded image of feminine perfection while failing to live out our own sense of perfection. I see way too many men in this community who are ragingly superficial while acting the part of mindless clowns, which is fine because this gig will work and it will get some guys laid. The problem as I see it is that their own personal offerings do not invoke the quality of female perfection they act entitled to. The woman they desire and not-so-discreetly reward is the flashy temptress who willingly immerses herself in the same social outlets the men do and which affords both the ability to meet on mutually artificial terms. Men seek the brainless, whored out image they have learned from television and the rest of pop culture. Men, playing the feminine role of pretentious attention whore only serve to encourage and proliferate the same behavior in women who are their natural mating demographic.There is a strong tendency, especially in those who are seeking new ways of perceiving and approaching relationships, to kow-tow to the current cultural trends and adopt such mindsets, almost uncritically. Given that Game theory places a strong emphasis on appearance, social status, and external communication, it is quite easy to fall into the trap of changing one's ideals, without even realizing that a change has taken place. When a man begins to be acutely status-conscious, he consider the implications of every word, every garment, every public interaction and every woman he dates. While an awareness of the social impact of certain things isn't harmful, it is quite easy to become enslaved to the whims of other peoples' perceptions, instead of adopting a fixed, rational foundation for considering what should be done and said. That is a trap which must be avoided, since much is as stake. As Phoenixism points out in his post, often the superficiality that many men absorb causes them to overlook women who might make much better relationship prospects.
The dating scene amongst the majority of 20-somethings (extending into their early 30s, as well) seems one that is etched with subdued superficiality and half-hearted standards when in fact the overriding impulse is one of purely physical and visceral pleasure.