Does magic invalidate consent?

Okay, serious story question:

In my fantasy world, people can wear charms made of siren scales which make them seem slightly more attractive. Not everyone owns these, but actors, sex workers, and the elite commonly do. They can’t change your appearance, just make someone notice your good qualities more.

For instance, if someone was unattractive to you they would still be unattractive, but slightly less so.

It does NOT:

  • make the wearer more attractive than anyone else in a room
  • act like an aphrodisiac
  • compel you to obey the wearer
  • lower inhibitions
  • make the wearer attractive to people who would not usually be attracted to their sex/gender.

Disclaimer: I am asexual and building this premise off what I assume “attractiveness” is.

People of all sexes and genders started having cooties when I hit puberty and never really stopped. I couldn’t guess a “hot” celebrity from Jane Doe at Walgreen’s. I’m also aromantic, and averse to emotionally intimate non-platonic relationships.

Given that, it didn’t occur to me that hooking up with someone who’d made themselves slightly prettier would be an issue of consent. I figured the charm was basically the same as make-up everybody likes. However, I’ve gotten some feedback that suggests it’s dubious, and now I’m worried.

So I want to open this question up to the class:

To people who experience attraction: do you feel that an individual’s use of this charm would affect your ABILITY to consent to sex?

Since this can be a delicate topic, I’d like to make this a safe space to respectfully give opinions on the topic. I don’t want to accidentally write something that makes people uncomfortable by being insensitive. Your feedback would be appreciated!

2 thoughts on “Does magic invalidate consent?

  1. If the charm doesn’t lower inhibitions, compel obedience or in any way affect the free will of other people then I would have to say no, it doesn’t invalidate consent.

    This doesn’t sound any different to using clothes, make-up or other cosmetics to make yourself more attractive. I might find a woman slightly more attractive if she adorns herself in a particular way, and that might make her harder to resist if she were to try and seduce me, but ultimately, I am still in control of my own actions.

    It’s also why you can’t use provocative dress as an excuse for raping someone, incidentally. So assuming I’ve understood your charm correctly, I don’t see any problem with it.

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