Women get such warped information from media about what "beautiful" means. Billboards, shop displays, and almost any movie portray an ideal that we didn't choose, and probably will never meet. As a husband, you can protect your wife from the messages that would tear down her self-image by letting her know she is beautiful. After all, it's your opinion that matters to her most.

In the morning, not long after she wakes up, tell your wife she is beautiful

Women dress up, do their hair, and put on makeup in order to present a brave face to the world and to appeal to - you. Your wife needs your love even when she can't be brave, and those moments before she's slipped on high heels or placed breakfast on the table are the perfect opportunity. Frizzy hair, short eyelashes, and frumpy pajamas notwithstanding, remind her that she is yours, and she is amazing.

Wives, it's okay to give your husband a little soft-hearted guidance on this point. I recently asked my husband, "Does it bother you that I don't usually get out of PJs before I drive you to work?" He gave my appearance a cursory glance. "No. You're gorgeous, anyway." Wow. I was so glad I asked.

Touch your wife in gentle, non-sexual ways

While sex is certainly important to marriages, so is simple tenderness. Touch your wife's shoulder as you walk by, or drop a kiss on her cheek when she's not expecting it. These kinds of actions help to create the emotional connectivity that your wife needs.

If you really want to amplify this, ask your wife if there is a small kind of touch that helps her to feel loved. Early in our marriage, I handed my hairbrush to my husband and asked him to get the tangles out of my hair. "I know it's a little silly, but it just feels really good to have someone else do it," I said. Now, when he notices I'm having a stressful day, he occasionally offers to get the hairbrush and let me relax.

Best. Husband. Ever.

Help your wife pick out her clothes

I know. I know. You're a guy. You don't have much of an opinion about clothes. You do, however, have an opinion about your wife - namely that she is beautiful and ought to be as happy as humanly possible. By telling her, while shopping, that a shirt makes you notice her eyes, or that those jeans really look nice on her, you're creating memories and guiding her away from that trend you think is weird.

For example, my husband came with me to pick out a new shirt. (Just one, since I didn't want to make him miserable by staying at the store all afternoon.) Every time I wear that shirt, I'm grateful that he thinks I'm pretty. That means more smiles and love for him.

Encourage your wife to seek positive influences

You are not alone in your fight against the things that would crush your beautiful wife's self-esteem. Many of your wife's friends probably help to energize her and keep her grounded. By suggesting that she spend time with them, you allow her to experience their kindness, courage, and wisdom - all attributes of true womanly beauty. Recognizing the attractiveness of those traits in her dear friends can help your wife to value those traits in herself, too.

Despite my husband's shyness, he willingly accompanies me on double dates with my friends and their husbands. This is because he knows that I am cultivating relationships with women who help me to be sensible and optimistic, even when it comes to my appearance. I'm happier as a result, and a happy wife makes for a happy husband.

You are a powerful factor in helping your wife to feel attractive and valuable. Whether verbally or through your actions, you impact her opinion of herself immensely. So use these ideas to help your wife to see herself how you see her - beautiful, inside and out.

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