Maybe we always knew it. Maybe we think our civilized society is too evolved for superficial things, but time and again it is borne out in study after study. “It,” is the fact that pretty people get more breaks. And in this tough economy, good looking men and women are more likely to land the job than their not so pretty counterparts. It isn’t clear how much more impressive a resume has to be to overcome the beauty index, but whether we like it or not, beauty rules. And what exactly is beauty? It was Plato who wrote that the ideal face is two thirds as wide as its length, with a nose about the same length as the width between the eyes. So much for the eye of the beholder. Economists estimate that a good looking man will likely earn $250,000 more than a less-attractive colleague, over his career span. Pretty women? Well, they can boost impressions of themselves by choosing clothes that show off their assets. Apparently, you can’t take the cave out of the man.
A recently published study from a researcher at Harvard University once again showed the “beauty bias.” But for all who think they are at a disadvantage for being a less attractive phenotype, there is hope. They can make a change with makeup. Who knew? Makeup. The Harvard study showed that viewers responded positively to women with glamorous makeup. And we think you can already define glamorous, but the study showed them with bright, pouty lips. The women who were judged as most attractive were also thought to be more competent. But this doesn’t mean the bulletproof lipstick gets you the job. The study showed that given more time, the heavily made up woman wasn’t attractive anymore. Viewers preferred the women who looked more “natural” in the makeup, but not the natural ones without makeup. It’s complicated.
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