Makeup = Competency?

by Elizabeth on October 18, 2011 · 3 comments

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A recent NY Times Article shares a new study that found makeup is linked with levels of trustworthiness, competency, attractiveness and likeability.  There have been studies in the past about how  makeup affects a woman’s confidence and researchers at Harvard, Boston University and others have teamed up with corporations like Proctor & Gamble and Dolce & Gabbana to find out the effect makeup has on a woman, her career and success on life.

There were four looks chosen ranging from no makeup to little makeup to professional makeup to glamorous makeup. One researcher guessed that glamorous makeup (the most makeup) would have an adverse affect but in the short term, this was not true. More makeup meant more likeability. But, over time people began to question the competency of those with a ‘glam look’ a little unlike the professional makeup look.

One female professor on the study was outraged about the link of competency and cosmetics. She stated:

“Twenty or 30 years ago, if you got dressed up, it was simply to please men, or it was something you were doing because society demands it,” she said. “Women and feminists today see this is their own choice, and it may be an effective tool.”

So cosmetics are a strategy. And not only a woman’s strategy but a feminist strategy? (Thought feminism was dead? Think not my friends.)

What do you think? Are cosmetics linked with competency? Is there a real strategy when applying makeup to get what you want? Are there society pressures to still wear makeup?

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{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

William R. Smith October 18, 2011 at 11:00 am

Femininity is for women who truly understand decent men…..Feminism is for Communists, lesbians and ugly women who can’t get dates as they have a chip on their shoulder…So disregard what ever they say….As long as the glitter sparkles on the neck, shoulders and cleavage don’t make it into the 9-5 office world things should be OK!

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Elizabeth October 18, 2011 at 11:34 am

Femininity is for women who understand decent men? What about women who like to be feminine just to please themselves and it has nothing to do with men at all. The problem is you’re assuming that women only consider men when they make choices about their body and appearance, it’s more complex than that.
You should not disregard feminists. You’re making assumptions about who a feminist is and what they stand for. You’ve just made chauvinist remarks and I have not disregarded you, could you maybe pay the same amount of respect to women and their views. Feminism has nothing to do with your political stance, sexual orientation or appearance it’s about the inherent inequality between men and women in society. Please try to be more understanding.

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Emily October 18, 2011 at 7:19 pm

Feminism is for Communists, lesbians and ugly women? That’s funny, because Gloria Steinem was a Playboy bunny. Betty Friedan was married. Helen Gurley Brown was very much about capitalism AND was the editor in chief of Cosmo. And speaking from a personal stance, I’m a feminist and I have never in my life had a problem getting dates, and have been in a committed relationship for 4 years…with a man. Stop listening to Rush Limbaugh and Pat Robertson and educate yourself before you make such inane statements.

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