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Good Looks Can Help Workers Get A Better Job And More Money

By Kate Merrill, WBZ-TV
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WBZ-TV's Kate Merrill Kate Merrill
Kate Merrill is an Emmy award winning journalist for WBZ-TV News and...
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BOSTON (CBS) – Being pretty pays! Professor Daniel Hamermesh, author of “Beauty Pays,” found above average looks will help you land a better job and your co-workers may even be nicer to you.

“There’s no question better looking people make more than less good lucking people,” says Professor Hamermesh. How much more? According to the Professor “the average worker who’s really good looking earns a quarter of a million more over a lifetime” than his or her less attractive co-workers. That’s an average of $230,000, just for being born attractive.

At Boston’s Model Club Inc. beauty can make or break a career. But the models and actors who make a living in front of the camera say there is more to getting the job than looks. ” I also think it takes a boatload of hard work to be successful,” says local model and actress Kimberly Giardino. Another Model Club Inc. client, Lee Edwards Simonds, adds “unfortunately that’s the way it goes if you’re better looking you get more gigs but it also has to do with personality.”

WBZ-TV’s Kate Merrill reports

So should those at a disadvantage because of their less-than-perfect looks be able to sue for discrimination? Professor Hamermesh says that might not be so farfetched. “Being ugly is not limiting the activity of daily life which is the criteria under American Discrimination Act. But, one could easily amend that.”

And there’s apparently little anyone can do to give your looks a boost. Professor Hamermesh says make-up, a better wardrobe, even plastic surgery will only have a small impact on your overall earnings.

His advice if you fall short of pretty? Play up your strengths.

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