The Economics of Attractiveness

A recent article in Time, under “Economy,” details the economic advantage of attractiveness, a topic we don't address in our interpersonal textbooks when we talk about attraction theory, interviewing, workplace success, and similar topics. Reality is tough to write into textbooks. The article, based on research reported in Daniel Hamermesh’s Beauty Pays: Why Attractive People Are More Successful, reports that the difference in life-time earnings between the typical attractive worker and the below-average worker is $230,000. On a five-point scale, men who score 4 or 5 (indicating above average in attractiveness) earn 17% more than men who score 1 and 2. For women the difference in 12%. One conclusion is that good looks are more important for men than for women, at least financially. Even more dramatic is the conclusion that discrimination against the unattractive costs the economy $20 billion per year.

1 comment:

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