Why Do Women Who Wear Makeup Earn More Money?

Patricia Bright


How much do you spend looking polished for work? I get my nails done, have my hair regularly highlighted, invest in good clothes and makeup and skincare that I’m passionate about – not just for me, but because I like to put my best face forward and feel confident while I work.

On the other hand, I have a friend who works just as hard as I do but rarely gets her hair cut and doesn’t wear any makeup at all, through personal choice. I wouldn’t expect to earn more than her based on that alone, but according to a new study, that’s exactly what happens.

This video from The Cut talks about the amount of money we spend on making ourselves look good in comparison to what we earn.

To be honest, makeup, hair care, clothes, and skincare is all part of what makes me feel good. I would do it even without a career that requires it, and I’d never judge someone’s ability to work based on their appearance. But apparently this happens.

What are your thoughts, girls?

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  1. Honestly, I’m not really surprised! When you look more put together, people take you more seriously. It’s part of the notion of “dressing for the role you want to have”.

    Brittany | thechicette.com

  2. Unfortunately in my line of work, I’m an associate professor of voice at a university, my wearing heels, dresses, and makeup everyday has worked against me as I look too pretty to be taken seriously as an academic even though I have three degrees and have been teaching for over 15 years. I also live in the south which is very old boys club.

  3. you are a walking billboard, you are your brand… Why not take the time to make sure all you i’s are dotted and t’s crossed before you leave the house in the morning. I’ve learned that when people see that you invest in yourself that will prompt them to invest in you as well.

  4. This is so interesting! I totally agree with you about wanting to feel good. When I feel good, I’m more confident in myself and in the work I do. I think that where this gets a little complicated is that some women may feel more confident without taking time on their appearance and it’s upsetting that they aren’t as rewarded in the long run.

  5. Well I’ve needed an excuse to get my hair cut :) This is so interesting and part of me hopes it’s not true as I’d have seriously sabotaged my chances over the last couple of years…


  6. Well this was interesting to read. I do think it is important to spend some time, even if just a little to work on yourself and to present your best self. I don’t enjoy wearing make up all the time but I consider it my war paint when I go to work in the morning where I work with all men. It does add confidence =o)


  7. I think it is good to take care of yourself, I dont think woman need to wear a lot of make to look nice, it is important to look clean and natural and to hide some imperfections if you dont have a perfect skin (I don´t so for me make up is a must), but I dont like a lot of make up on woman, I am for natural look, a little bit of make up and nicely done eyebrows, lashes, some blush on the cheeks….

  8. Personally I think this is depressing. I think anything beyond what is hygienic and basic (ie washing, brushing your hair, wearing clothes that are clean and not wrinkled, etc.) wearing make up and going for manicures should not impact on how much you earn. It is interesting that these studies are focused on women. I wonder if men who go to the gym and invest in skincare earn more than those who don’t…

    Inma x

  9. Wow! I am surprised by this! Certain professions want you to look well-dressed and certain professions ask you to look more formal than dressy. Wearing makeup and looking good definitely boosts your confidence but girls who don’t spend so much time on this and work equally hard should also be taken seriously. You don’t have to break the bank and buy the most expensive designer clothes or bags but at least look presentable.


  10. Whatever makes you feel good. The rest is just what society wants us to believe in.


  11. Wearing makeup to me is just how I downplay my flaws and accentuate my assets. I won’t go overboard like some do, but since I take pride in my appearance I’m calling it the warpaint that helps me look my best in my dealing with men in this world where men still rule :)
    xx Alexis
    YouTube “Travel with Alexis”

  12. Wearing makeup for me is to downplay flaws and accentuate assets. I won’t go overboard ever, but since I take pride in my appearance makeup is the warpaint necessary for me to face the world with confidence thus do my best work.
    xx Alexis
    YouTube “Travel with Alexis”

  13. Not at all surprised . Wearing makeup and looking good definitely boosts my confidence. Feeling good definitely helps


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