Make-up and the Boardroom: Will wearing make-up earn you more?
It is important to show your company and your colleagues that you care about how you represent them, physically. Women who wear make-up generally get better jobs, quicker promotions, and a pay increase (Times Online UK). The way that you physically present yourself is the packaging of your personal brand. Whether you like it or not, you will be judged on your appearance.
In a recent survey, 64% of directors said that women who wore make-up appear more professional and 18% of directors said that women who wear make up earn 30 percent more than those who choose not to (The American Economic Review).
Cosmetics can send signals about your career status. One study published in the International Journal of Cosmetics Science has found that people judge women wearing cosmetics as higher earners with more prestigious jobs. Researchers have also looked at which components of makeup are most appealing. A recent study has found that eye makeup has the most powerful effect on attractiveness, followed by foundation. Surprisingly, lipstick did not have such a major effect (Wiley Online Library).
In corporate settings, it is important that you are persuasive to your boss, colleagues, and clients. Physical attractiveness plays an important role in persuasion. Persuasion involves symbolic communication between two or more people with intent to change, reinforce, or shape attitudes, beliefs, and/or behaviors of the receiver. In essence, you want your audience to believe that you have credibility.
Picture this: Ugly Betty is selling a new make-up line and Gabrielle Union sells the same line. The majority of consumers will believe the effectiveness of the new make-up line if they can visualize Gabrielle Union selling it to them. The first step in persuasion is gaining your audience’s attention. Therefore, physically attractive people draw more attention and they are perceived as more credible sources. We assign positive characteristics such as friendly, self-confident, and socially competent to physically attractive people. Make-up gives you a more polished look, and it contributes to an increase in physical attractiveness in corporate settings. Not only will you appear more refined, you will feel more confident. So before you ask your boss for a raise, give you face some praise! You are worthy.