Investing in Your Appearance to Get Ahead

Ambitious men and women use a variety of tools to advance in the workplace, and although it may seem controversial, improving your appearance is among those tactics. The common sentiment is that it shouldn’t matter how you look if you perform well at work, but has that ever stopped you from dressing up for a job interview?


By devoting time and money to your image, the resulting confidence could be the edge you need to outmaneuver your competition.

The relationship between attractiveness and success at the major life stages is well known. More adorable babies are said to benefit from more attention from their caretakers, known as the kewpie doll effect. Later on, teachers have higher expectations for cuter elementary school children, and they are more likely to give these students the time and attention needed to meet those expectations.

A similar effect is seen once we enter the workforce, with good-looking adults earning 4% to 8% more than their aesthetically average peers. During a person’s working career, the monetary advantages of being beautiful add up.

The working population is relying on plastic surgery more and more as a way to stay competitive in the aggressive business world. Most notably, baby boomers are turning more often to anti-aging cosmetic procedures to protect their jobs. The belief is that if you don’t look as fresh and energetic as you feel, you may be passed over when the HR department tries to accommodate the next budget cut. And for those currently looking for their next opportunity, take note that some hiring managers pick more vibrant-looking candidates over those who look tired or haggard.


The most popular anti-aging plastic surgeries are facelift and blepharoplasty, otherwise known as eyelid surgery. These procedures can help lift and tighten skin, giving patients a more refreshed appearance while reducing jowls, dark circles, and eye puffiness.

Other kinds of plastic surgery procedures, such as liposuction and breast augmentation, aren’t used so much to get ahead in the workplace as they are as rewards for financial success. According to the breast augmentation specialists at The Plastic Surgery Group outside of Syracuse, NY, most people who choose that surgery have long wanted larger breasts and are simply waiting for the right time in their lives. For many, this comes after succeeding in the workplace and reaching financial stability.


Perhaps the most popular type of cosmetic enhancement that’s tied to career confidence, though, is minimally invasive treatments. Dermal fillers such as JUVÉDERM® and Restylane® can help temporarily plump and lift areas of the face, helping patients smooth out the wrinkles and lines that come with age. BOTOX® Cosmetic, the most popular non-surgical cosmetic treatment in the nation, reduces wrinkles around the eyes and forehead. Laser and energy treatments can also erase wrinkles and age spots and tighten skin.

These kinds of treatments are preferred by working professionals mostly for their convenience. Most take just a quick treatment session and require no downtime. Non-surgical treatments also come with the benefit of very natural-looking results. If you’d rather not have your co-workers notice you’ve had work done, this kind of subtle enhancement is a good way to look refreshed and not “fake.”

Just like a career portfolio or education, investing in your appearance can be a smart career choice and can help you remain vital and respected in the workplace.