Here's a good-looking James McAvoy.
File: James McAvoy by Gage Skidmore 2.jpg - Wikimedia Commons - Labeled free for reuse)
Is it the hair?
Nope. Still goodlooking.
Ah! Now we're getting somewhere. This guy isn't good-looking.
Hollywood does it with women too. I could drop examples all day long.
But how does a writer describe this? Without referencing movies or actors. Someone who has pleasing facial features, but there's something that keeps them from being good-looking. Some darkness in the eyes, the way they move their face, there's just something.
Or, do only a few people see what I'm talking about?
Have you ever looked at a picture of someone from history and thought, "Wow, that person is incredibly good-looking," and then found out they did something deplorable? Or do you see the pictures and think, "This person is almost good-looking, but there's something keeping me from feeling attracted or recognizing the beauty"?
This blog post is a two-part question.
1) Do you recognize evil in someone when you see it, and find it unattractive?
2) How would you describe that?
Original: ~ One of the captors who held the girl's chains, a young man who would be quite desirable if not for his villainous choices, chuckled at the question. ~
Improved attempt 1: ~ One of the captors who held the girl's chains, a young man who was handsome behind his aura of evil, chuckled at the question. ~
Improved attempt 2: ~ One of the captors who held the girl's chains, an almost desirable young man if not for the hatred radiating from his grin, chuckled at the question. ~