Fri
Oct 7 2011 8:42am

Judging Your Make Up by Your Make-Up

Natalie Portman in Black SwanWant to move ahead? Wear makeup.

The more makeup a woman has on, in fact, the more they’re judged as attractive, competent, likeable and trustworthy.

The study showed its participants women wearing makeup at levels described as “natural,” “professional” and “glamorous,” and women with the “glamorous” look were deemed as likable as those with the “professional” look, but were found significantly more attractive and competent (though less trustworthy).

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7 comments
Megan Frampton
2. MFrampton
Not only that, it was done by a Harvard affiliate! So, yeah, probably men. Lots of white men.
Natasha Carty
3. WickedLilPixie
Then my point has been made! S likes me WITHOUT make up, so there Harvard!
Marian DeVol
4. ladyengineer
Think of it as war paint – the psychological edge it would be criminal to deny yourself. Just as when you put on a power suit or try for a more put-together fashionable look in clothes, the right make-up draws attention to your eyes and face and encourages those around you to pay attention to what you are saying. Indispensible in any important meeting – such as an author’s meeting with her publisher to negotiate the advance for her next novel. Examples of the significance of this can be found in almost any episode of TLC’s “What Not To Wear”. I have personal experience with this. At 22 fresh from college and looking about 14, I had a very tough time being taken seriously by other engineers in my first job in a factory in Georgia. Had I been more inclined to wear make-up and more business-appropriate clothes, things might have been easier. Now, some 30 or so years and several career shifts later (now in IT in academia), I am grateful to still look 10+ years younger than I am and find make-up helps me in meetings with upper management and opinionated customers (faculty). I will use any advantage I can! ;->
Marian DeVol
5. ladyengineer
This is more the way it should have posted (my first posting here):

Think of it as war paint – the psychological edge it would be criminal to deny yourself.

Just as when you put on a power suit or try for a more put-together fashionable look in clothes, the right make-up draws attention to your eyes and face and encourages those around you to pay attention to what you are saying. Indispensible in any important meeting – such as an author’s meeting with her publisher to negotiate the advance for her next novel. Examples of the significance of this can be found in almost any episode of TLC’s “What Not To Wear”.

I have personal experience with this. At 22 fresh from college and looking about 14, I had a very tough time being taken seriously by other engineers in my first job in a factory in Georgia. Had I been more inclined to wear make-up and more business-appropriate clothes, things might have been easier.

Now, some 30 or so years and several career shifts later (now in IT for academia), I am grateful to still look 10+ years younger than I am and find make-up helps me in meetings with upper management and opinionated customers (faculty).
Myretta Robens
6. Myretta
I guess I'm out of luck. Good thing I work at home, eh?
CindyS
7. CindyS
Hubby says he prefers me without makeup - I take him at his word mainly because I can't see why I need to cough up an easy 50 bucks just to get foundation and a blush - although now that I'm 40 and we're heading into winter I'm considering it!

What I couldn't understand was how garish make up could make a person look more competent. The number of times I've seen someone wearing unflattering makeup is higher than those who look good (in real life). If I'm noticing that your blush is more purple than rosy then I'm not thinking about anything other than 'can't they see that?' (This was my Aunt for a few months - looked almost like light bruising but I was a teen and I wasn't going to say boo about it). Meanwhile another aquaintance of mine wears navy eye shadow. Navy. It's beyond smoky and into black eye territory. I've known her for 15 years and her eyes have never changed and I wouldn't dream of approaching her about it. She's near 50 now and I figure if you're still in it, then you are happy.

CindyS
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