The Fear of Beautiful Women – Caligynephobia

Afraid of Beautiful Women?

Have you ever come across a person who panics at the sight of a beautiful woman? They don’t feel simply nervous or shy, but actual panic.

How about you? Do you perhaps shut down when you encounter a gorgeous woman? Is it nerve-wracking just to utter a few words around them?

Those who struggle with such symptoms may be suffering with a condition called caligynephobia, or the fear of beautiful women. This fear is also known as venustraphobia. It is different than gynephobia, which is a fear of women in general. It is also limited to a specific gender and does not involve a fear of men.

This situation can be a nightmare for anyone. The sight of a beautiful woman leaving you frozen in fear or causing panic can be embarrassing. But thankfully, there are several ways to overcome it. Read on to learn more.

What Causes the Fear of Beautiful Women?

Intrinsic Cause

Researchers studying this phobia of beautiful women work to determine the root cause. Several studies suggest that some men might inherit caligynephobia. These men, in time, become extremely anxious and sensitive around beautiful women. It also indicates a type of anxiety disorder.

Negative Association Cause

It is also possible that the phobia might arise due to a past negative experience, even though the theory of inheritance of this phobia is popular. If a man has been a recipient of a rejection, joke, ridicule, or insult by a beautiful woman, he might develop this phobia over time. He may begin to associate negative experiences with beautiful women, thus resulting in caligynephobia.

Observational Cause

Some men do not personally have to go through a negative experience to develop this phobia. Research has suggested that some men observe other negative experiences and make associations. They may observe a negative experience involving someone related to them or even a co-worker. This association can be unconscious and unintentional.

Stress-Related Cause

Stress can be one of the triggers of caligynephobia. Some men undergo stress when they are placed in situations involving beautiful women. This stress can intensify an already manifesting phobia.

External Cause

Men who are more impressionable and suffer from low self-esteem often live with caligynephobia in silence. Impressionable men might come across films or television series that suggest how stressful it is to be around beautiful women, and they accept that as a fact of life. Friends and family may also lead some men into believing exaggerations about beautiful women which may not be true in reality.

Quick Q&A

Can a woman have caligynephobia?
Men or women can suffer from caligynephobia; adults and children as well.
What is a caligynephobic person afraid of?
The intense fear of beautiful women.
What is acute caligynephobia?
Intense or long lasting fear of beautiful women.
How do you overcome caligynephobia?
Self-help or professional therapy.

What Are the Symptoms of Caligynephobia?

There are several symptoms for those suffering with caligynephobia. These symptoms are not just physical, but also psychological.

Physical Symptoms

  • Trembling or shaking uncontrollably
  • Screaming or crying
  • Abnormal heartbeats or palpitations
  • Sweaty palms or hands
  • Nausea, vomiting, or headaches
  • Breathlessness
  • Heavy breathing

Psychological Symptoms

  • Feeling zero control over foolish actions
  • Often finding oneself in embarrassing situations
  • Constant feeling of need to run away
  • No sense of reality
  • Choking or gasping for air sensations
  • Assumption of going blind or passing out

In severe cases of caligynephobia, a person might continually feel self-conscious. This affects their self-esteem and relationships. While others may not consider this phobia a serious issue, it is a troubling situation for people who suffer from it. Some men suffering with caligynephobia might even consider remaining single all their life to avoid risking interaction with beautiful women.

How Does One Tackle Caligynephobia?

There are several treatments you can try to overcome a fear of beautiful women. Phobias are generally irrational, and the ways to overcome them often begin with self-help. If the phobia persists, seek professional therapy.


Various self-help techniques assist in dealing with caligynephobia by building self-esteem. There are several ways you can rebuild your self-esteem. Make sure to give attention to self-care during this process. It is crucial to take care of yourself when working to rebuild your self-esteem. This may include doing what makes you happy, being around your loved ones, and checking in with yourself from time-to-time.


This is a proven relaxation method. Meditation is significant to harness self-esteem. This method provides control over feelings and emotions, which in turn help you manage your outlook on any external situation. Obtaining control over your emotions is an effective way in dealing with any phobia.

Build a Support System

Surround yourself with supportive people as an effective way of dealing with caligynephobia. These people offer you the confidence and a cushion of support that you require and which helps ease the stressful situations for you. Trusting your loved ones to understand your phobia is the first step towards building a support system.

Understand Your Feelings

Finally, it is vital to understand your feelings. Dealing with feelings can be stressful at times, but it offers a direct insight into your phobia.

Professional Help to Deal with Caligynephobia – Options Available

Occasionally, self-help techniques are not enough to overcome a phobia. In this case, professional options are available.

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy

Cognitive behavioral therapy helps increase the person’s awareness of their thoughts and actions involving the phobia. Identifying these can help the person identify exaggerations that exist around their fear.  Cognitive behavioral therapy also aids in identifying false threats. It promotes change in the negative thought pattern a person experiences because of the phobia.


Desensitization is another professional therapy in dealing with caligynephobia. In this therapy, the person suffering from the phobia is gradually exposed to the object of their fear—in this case, attractive women—until their panic and anxiety subsides. This exposure is performed in a controlled setting. The therapy begins with imagery desensitization, usually for 15 minutes each session. There is persistent encouragement and positive assurance throughout each session. Eventually, the phobic is encouraged to practice this behavior with actual women. The imagery desensitization builds up self-esteem and helps the phobic to experience a normal response around beautiful women.

Learning to Handle Caligynephobia

Phobias are irrational, therefore there is no definitive treatment that can guarantee a cure. However, with time and effort, therapy can help you learn to overcome or at least better cope with your fear.

If you consider your own physical appearance to be a cause of your fear of beautiful women, try an exercise regimen. Regular exercise boosts confidence and helps rebuild self-esteem when dealing with caligynephobia.


The next time you feel panicked in the presence of a beautiful woman, try and understand where the fear originates from. Take a deep breath, and lean into the self-help techniques covered above. Being free of fear is a beautiful thing.

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