Beauty Pays by Daniel S. Hamermesh
Why Attractive People Are More Successful

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Synopsis

Most of us know there is a payoff to looking good, and in the quest for beauty we spend countless hours and billions of dollars on personal grooming, cosmetics, and plastic surgery. But how much better off are the better looking? Based on the evidence, quite a lot. The first book to seriously measure the advantages of beauty, Beauty Pays demonstrates how society favors the beautiful and how better-looking people experience startling but undeniable benefits in all aspects of life. Noted economist Daniel Hamermesh shows that the attractive are more likely to be employed, work more productively and profitably, receive more substantial pay, obtain loan approvals, negotiate loans with better terms, and have more handsome and highly educated spouses. Hamermesh explains why this happens and what it means for the beautiful--and the not-so-beautiful--among us.

Exploring whether a universal standard of beauty exists, Hamermesh illustrates how attractive workers make more money, how these amounts differ by gender, and how looks are valued differently based on profession. He considers whether extra pay for good-looking people represents discrimination, and, if so, who is discriminating. Hamermesh investigates the commodification of beauty in dating and how this influences the search for intelligent or high-earning mates, and even examines whether government programs should aid the ugly. He also discusses whether the economic benefits of beauty will persist into the foreseeable future and what the "looks-challenged" can do to overcome their disadvantage.

Reflecting on a sensitive issue that touches everyone, Beauty Pays proves that beauty's rewards are anything but superficial.

 

About Daniel S. Hamermesh

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Daniel S. Hamermesh is the Sue Killam Professor in the Foundations of Economics at the University of Texas, Austin, and professor of economics at Royal Holloway, University of London.
 
Published August 2, 2011 by Princeton University Press. 229 pages
Genres: Business & Economics, Health, Fitness & Dieting, Education & Reference. Non-fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for Beauty Pays

Kirkus Reviews

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But Hamermesh’s findings give credence to the nagging hunch many readers have had all along: that “within most occupations, the better-looking earn significantly more” and that employers “believe that they will be helped if they hire better-looking workers.” He finds that "bad-looking men" earn, ...

Aug 21 2011 | Read Full Review of Beauty Pays: Why Attractive P...

Publishers Weekly

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This chatty, economist's-eye-view of beauty in the marketplace provides solid statistical evidence that beauty does pay.

Jul 04 2011 | Read Full Review of Beauty Pays: Why Attractive P...

Examiner

Hamermesh estimates that people with above average looks earn a 3 or 4 percent premium over those with below average looks.

Jun 18 2012 | Read Full Review of Beauty Pays: Why Attractive P...

New York Journal of Books

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Yippee?And these benefits are directly related to Mr. Hamermesh’s queries into how universal versus cross-culturally diverse standards of beauty figure into his equations.While the answers to the question of if beauty pays are pretty obvious, the hows are certainly interesting enough.For this rev...

Aug 21 2011 | Read Full Review of Beauty Pays: Why Attractive P...

The Economist

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For John Bradshaw, a biologist who founded the anthrozoology department at the University of Bristol, having some idea about how dogs got to be dogs is the first stage towards gaining a better understanding of what dogs and people mean to each other.

Jun 02 2016 | Read Full Review of Beauty Pays: Why Attractive P...

The Economist

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Even those who reject the notion that women are just not that into sex can support Ms Hakim's call for the full legalisation of prostitution and surrogate pregnancies for profit, thus giving women the freedom to earn a return on whichever personal asset they choose.

Aug 27 2011 | Read Full Review of Beauty Pays: Why Attractive P...

Macleans

Attractive people earn five per cent more than average-looking people, who in turn earn 10 per cent more than ugly people, says Hamermesh.

Sep 15 2011 | Read Full Review of Beauty Pays: Why Attractive P...

Carlin Romano

Hamermesh first quotes an online dictionary whose definition uses the unbeautiful word "aggregate," then moves on to a discussion of the relative merits of rating beauty on a 5-to-1 scale versus a 10-to-1 scale, and finally concedes that the statistics confirm that old idea that beauty is in the ...

Dec 11 2011 | Read Full Review of Beauty Pays: Why Attractive P...

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