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Study: Managers don't want to hire beautiful people for less desirable jobs

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Being attractive tends to pay off. Studies suggest that good-looking people are more likely to get hired, promoted and elected to public office.

But new research published in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology found that attractive people may not always be better off.

Researchers from the London Business School conducted a study with over 750 participants who were each given a photo of an attractive person and a photo of a less attractive person and asked to theoretically "hire" one for a job. The study found that participants were less likely to choose attractive people for less desirable jobs.

The reason? Participants felt the good looking people were entitled to good jobs.

Study co-author Margaret Lee, a doctoral candidate in organizational behavior at London School of Business told Quartz, "We found that people perceive attractive individuals to feel more entitled to good outcomes than unattractive individuals."

Since participants felt the better looking people would want higher quality jobs, attractive people ended up getting passed over for jobs like warehouse worker, housekeeper or customer service representative.

Part of the reason for this phenomena is that participants did not want to subject nice-looking people to jobs that they think are not enjoyable. But those assumptions could be hurting those in lower socioeconomic classes, explains Lee.

"Our work suggests that we may need to think differently about low-level jobs," she told Quartz. "Jobs that are considered to be less desirable are typically those at the lower end of the socioeconomic spectrum, including a disproportionate number of people who might be particularly vulnerable if they become victims of discrimination."

A previous study conducted by psychologists at the University of Essex and the University of Cambridge found similar evidence of bias against attractive people. Their research found that scientists who are perceived as attractive are less likely to be seen as "good scientists" who conduct sound research.

In an interview with "Live Science," Ana Gheorghiu, one of the study's authors, said, "I was very surprised that attractiveness could be a negative quality."

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