“Very unattractive” participants earned significantly more than those who were considered attractive, according to a study published in the Journal of Business and Psychology. The study, which looked at data on 20,000 young Americans, also disputes the belief in a “beauty premium,” which suggests people who are considered attractive earn more. This correlation was found when controlling for personality factors, health and intelligence.
Without controlling for other factors, “attractive” people tended to earn more, according to the researchers from the London School of Economics and Political Science and University of Massachusetts. They looked at data from thousands of young people who were interviewed about physical attractiveness three times between the ages of 16 and 29.
“It appears that more beautiful workers earn more, not because they are beautiful, but because they are healthier, more intelligent, and have better (more conscientious and extraverted, and less neurotic) personality,” the study reads.
Overall, the study found little evidence that attractive people earn more across the board and disappears completely when controlling for other factors.